Boehner: Obama Summit Has Makings of an ‘Infomercial’

Posted February 22, 2010 at 11:34am

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Monday accused President Barack Obama of releasing a partisan health care reform proposal and suggested the president’s bipartisan summit later this week on the issue would amount to a Democratic “infomercial.”

Still, Boehner stopped short of saying that Republicans would boycott the Thursday forum.

“The President has crippled the credibility of this week’s summit by proposing the same massive government takeover of health care based on a partisan bill the American people have already rejected,” Boehner said in a statement. “This week’s summit clearly has all the makings of a[n] infomercial for continuing on a partisan course that relies on more backroom deals and parliamentary tricks to circumvent the will of the American people and jam through a massive government takeover of health care.”

Republicans have called on Democrats to scrap the bills that have passed both chambers and begin the Thursday summit with a clean slate.

Boehner said Obama’s $950 billion health care reform plan released on Monday morning — like the House and Senate bills — would do little to lower health care premiums and fails to explicitly ban funding for abortion.

Brad Dayspring, a spokesman for Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.), said Obama’s plan is a rehash of policies that have already been rejected by voters.

“The Obama plan costs a trillion dollars, puts government in control of personal health decisions, and allows the government to set prices in the private market,” Dayspring said in a statement. “That mirrors the Pelosi/Reid plans that have already been soundly rejected by the bipartisan majority of Americans.”

Obama’s health care plan is based largely on the Senate-passed bill that lacks a public insurance option and includes the “Cadillac” tax on high-cost health insurance plans opposed by many House Democrats.

The proposal requires most Americans to have health insurance coverage and provides federal subsidies to help pay for premiums.