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Obama Indicates Disposition on How to Move Health Reform Forward

March 2, 2010

Following up on efforts to identify common ground among Democrats and Republicans via a health care reform summit hosted last week, President Barack Obama sent a letter today to congressional leaders laying out his position on how to move forward. Notably, Obama indicates that he does still favor a comprehensive reform package, rather than incremental adoption of certain reform measures that can find support from both Democrats and Republicans.

“I believe that piecemeal reform is not the best way to effectively reduce premiums, end the exclusion of people with pre-existing conditions [from affordable health care coverage], or offer Americans the security of knowing that they will never lose coverage, even if they lose or change jobs,” Obama states in the letter. He notes he believes that “we must insist on some common-sense rules of the road to hold insurance companies accountable for the decisions they make to raise premiums and deny coverage” as a foundation for health care reform. Even so, the president reinforces the notion that “the Republican and Democratic approaches to health care [reform] have more in common than most people think” and that the two parties can work together on commonly supported issues.

He cites several topics raised during the discussion last week (