Friday, March 19, 2010

Obama:"Help Me Finish The Fight" On Health Care Reform

WASHINGTON D.C. (TheStreet) -- President Obama is again delaying his trip to the Pacific as the contentious health care bill makes its way towards a vote this Sunday.

President Obama was scheduled to visit Guam and other Pacific nations, however, given the magnitude of the health care battle, decided it would be better to circle around the Capitol Dome for a few more days.

Thursday has been a numbers-game day in the home stretch of President Obama's effort to enact health reform legislation.

U.S. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said a final vote on the legislation could come by Sunday as Democrats attempt to line up the final votes.

Hoyer was among Democrats leading the charge with the just-released numbers from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) showing that health care reform would not just save $138 billion in its first ten years, but more than $1.2 trillion over the subsequent decade -- though the longer-term forecasts are viewed by many critics in Washington as having a healthy margin of error.

Republicans were quick to jump on health care reform price tag of $940 billion over the first 10 years, and the same CBO's data that the U.S. government has already racked up a $655 billion deficit through the first five months of 2010 -- which includes economic stimulus spending.

Leading Republicans linked the spending figure to the current weak state of the U.S. economy, and aimed to stoke fears that the government would be setting up future generations for a massive debt load.