Q&A: Fiscal Summit

we need to take here generally, and specifically with health care reform.  You had a different view during the campaign on health care reform.  John McCain had a different view during the campaign on health care reform.  Here’s an opportunity for us to come up with something that’s uniquely American, that’s public and private.  And I do believe if we just keep that working-together approach and keep at it — all opinions, et cetera — and take advantage of this opportunity where the stars are now aligned as to health care, and we’ll get it done.

Because I was very pleased that you called on John first because I think it’s this tone that we have to take here to make sure we’re working together.  Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you, Max.

Jim, you got any thoughts on this?

REPRESENTATIVE CLYBURN:  Well, I just wanted to thank you very much, Mr. President, for doing this.  I was thinking when you called on Senator McCain — I came to this Congress (inaudible), two Democrats and two Republicans.  It is remarkable the things we were able to do in South Carolina with Jim Edwards, (inaudible); Carroll Campbell, John West, Dick Riley — simply because he started thinking about what we needed to do for the people of our state.

I think that what we’re doing here today provides a framework for us to really get some things done for the people of our great nation.  And we can do this.  And I’m so pleased that you’ve set this tone here today.  And I — (inaudible).

THE PRESIDENT:  Mike, were you in the — were you in the health care panel?  Do you want to just add some thoughts?

SENATOR ENZI:  Mr. President, I, too, appreciate the effort to bring these people together.  We had both a number of associations, as well as the House and Senate.  One of the things I want to emphasize was the (inaudible) that Senator Baucus pointed out to be bipartisan started at the beginning of the process rather than at the end of the process.  And we do have a task force set up in the Senate that’s under Baucus’s heading up, that has had several meetings already that brought out the issues that — all of the issues to be put on the table.  And the words not to use, because there are some words that send us right into (inaudible) and debate –

THE PRESIDENT:  Socialized medicine.  (Laughter and applause.)

PARTICIPANT:  Both sides of the aisle.  (Laughter.)

SENATOR ENZI:   — and get the principals together, and then talk to the stakeholders and then take them through the regular Senate processes as soon as possible, to do that sort of thing.  Senator Kennedy and I, and Senators Baucus and Grassley were in the pensions debate.  And that took an hour of time on the floor plus two amendments to get that result, because it went through that very difficult process.  So I appreciate you including that.

THE PRESIDENT:  Did we have some representatives from the Chamber of Business participating?

MR. CASTELLANI:  Mr. President, I’m John

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