President Obama today reaffirmed his commitment to reforming health care to control costs, provide affordable coverage, and ensure quality care by introducing competition and transparency into the current system. In his speech, Obama also took aim at comments made by one of the most ardent opponents of health reform, Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC). DeMint last week declared that he would do everything in his power to kill health reform in the Senate. Obama struck back today by saying the debate “isn’t about me,” but rather a system that is “breaking American families”:
OBAMA: Just the other day, 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. It is about a health care system that is breaking American families, breaking America’s businesses and breaking America’s economy.
Obama also extended his deadline for passing health reform. He previously called upon Congress to complete health care before the August recess, but today said, “Let’s pass reform by the end of this year.”