Posted by Todd Callahan
No State of Health Care in State of the Union
With the Tar Heels off till Thursday, and the Carolina Hurricanes taking a break for the NHL All-Star game, I settled in tonight to watch the fireworks from President Obama's State of the Union Address.
However, among all the “I”s from the president, and his championing the efforts of ending the war on Iraq, the killing of Osama bin Laden and Libyan leader Moammar Khadafy, the one omission was health care.
Rather than discussing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which turns two on March 24, Obama boasted the creation of three million manufacturing jobs in the last 22 months, and helping the American automotive industry with his bailout.
“On the day I took office, our auto industry was on the verge of collapse,” Obama said. “Some even said we should let it die. With a million jobs at stake, I refused to let that happen. In exchange for help, we demanded responsibility. We got workers and automakers to settle their differences. We got the industry to retool and restructure. Today, General Motors is back on top as the world's number one automaker. Chrysler has grown faster in the U.S. than any major car company. Ford is investing billions in U.S. plants and factories. And together, the entire industry added nearly 160,000 jobs.”
However, what about the skyrocketing health care costs Ford, GM and Chrysler are forced to pay their respective employee population? Even with the bailout, how are these companies able to take on more employees, increasing health care costs.
There was no mention from the president, who was speaking in front of the Supreme Court justices who later this year will determine the fate of the controversial health care law.
The few times health care was mentioned was midway through the president’s one hour, five minute speech. Obama said, “I will not go back to the days when health insurance companies had unchecked power to cancel your policy, deny you coverage, or charge women differently from men.
The other reference was, “I'm prepared to make more reforms that rein in the long term costs of Medicare and Medicaid.”
Obama’s passing comments on health care were more than Indiana governor Mitch Daniels, who never touched the subject.
Health care was the focal point of Obama’s speech last year. This year the president wanted to brag and showcase his accomplishments and blame Congress for his administration’s shortcomings.