Health Care Blabbery

Jillian Bandes
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Posted: Feb 25, 2010 12:00 PM
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Opening statements consisted of platitudes - as Chris Frates at Politico pointed out, they "focused largely on the why of health care reform instead of the how."

Then came the Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) / President Obama showdown. Alexander wanted to know why, if reducing costs was the best way to get more people care, President Obama and House Democrats didn't immediately pass bills to curb medical fraud, which accounts for 15% of all medical costs in the U.S. Obama, of course, responded that fraud was one of many things his health care bill tackled.

Alexander also wanted to know if Democrats would immediately take reconciliation off the table -- a procedure Americans overwhelmingly disapprove of -- and Obama dodged the question.

Sen. Jon Kyl
(R-Ariz.) pointed out that there was a "big difference," in proposals, and kind of dove into the weeds with criticisms about cost control. That's in sharp contrast to the President, who has taken up most of the speaking time, usually to spin stories about his college years and talk about why Republicans are being obstructionist.

Perhaps the best line came from Sen. Chuck Schumer, (D-NY) when he called the event a "constructive" dialogue.