POLITICS

Obama Urges Action On Health Care Reform: "We've Talked This Problem To Death"

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama says it is time for the country to take action on his proposed health care overhaul because "we've talked this problem to death."

Obama said that out-of-pocket costs for Americans are spiraling while health insurance companies have reaped record profits. He also said families are spending more for less care.

Obama visited a children's hospital Monday and spoke with doctors and nurses about the shortcomings of the health care system. He said hey are forced to work in a system that favors drug companies and insurance companies, not care.

The president responded directly to Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), who said last week that health care reform could be the president's "Waterloo."

"Now, there are some in this town who are content to perpetuate the status quo, are in fact fighting reform on behalf of powerful special interests," Obama said. "There are others who recognize the problem, but believe -- or perhaps, hope -- that we can put off the hard work of insurance reform for another day, another year, another decade.

"Just the other day," he continued, "one Republican senator said -- and I'm quoting him now -- 'If we're able to stop Obama on this, it will be his Waterloo. It will break him.' Think about that. This isn't about me. This isn't about politics. This is about a health care system that is breaking America's families, breaking America's businesses, and breaking America's economy."

Obama said the need for change is urgent and indisputable. He says those who oppose him want to preserve the status quo. He says changing the system is more important than politics or his personal reputation.

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