Obama: “Healthcare Now,” Goodlatte: “Reset”

Brent Finnegan -- March 9th, 2010

While President Obama is making his big push to pass his version of health care reform in Washington, Rep. Bob Goodlatte has been in the Shenandoah Valley, urging to put the brakes on current negotiations and start over.

“The American people have not responded well to this, and we have received thousands and thousands of e-mail and letters,” [Goodlatte] said. “And the overwhelming majority say push the reset button and that’s what we said when we went to the (Feb. 25 health care) summit.” (Staunton News Leader)

His remarks to the Waynesboro Kiwanis Club today were consistent with statements of opposition the congressman has made about health care reform in the past.

Considering Goodlatte has been in office since 1993, Obama’s recent remarks about congressional obstructionism to his health care plan seem to be tailored for longtime Republican incumbents like Goodlatte (who is now serving his ninth term).

Obama: “I got all my Republican colleagues out there saying ‘No, no, no, we want to focus on things like costs.’ You had 10 years. What happened? What were you doing?” (TPM)

Going back as far as 1992, when Goodlatte was the “candidate for change” during his first run for congressional office, “Democrat Steve Musselwhite and Republican Bob Goodlatte sparred over how best to extend health care coverage to the estimated 40 million Americans without health insurance” (today that number is closer to 47 million).

Goodlatte said his plans would turn poor Americans into health care consumers and give them more options; Musselwhite contended Goodlatte’s policies would only help the middle-class and wealthy . . .

Goodlatte also repeated his call for a system of tax credits and vouchers. Under the plan, devised by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank in Washington, D.C., the federal government would send a poor recipient a voucher, which could then be spent on health care. (Roanoke Times, September 15, 1992)

That was then, this is now, but not a whole lot has changed. Sweeping health care reform and major coverage expansion has failed in Washington since the Truman administration. Will 2010 be any different? Should it be?

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