Obama Rallies Grass-Roots Supporters

Posted August 20, 2009 at 3:50pm

President Barack Obama on Thursday sought to rally the troops backing him on health care, delivering a call to action to the grass-roots membership of Organizing for America at an event streamed on the Internet from Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C.“Nothing’s more powerful than millions of voices calling for change,— Obama said. “That’s how we won an election.—Organizing for America was formed from the huge e-mail list of supporters and volunteers who worked for Obama’s presidential campaign. The president compared the state of his health care initiative to times last year when his campaign seemed on the ropes.“Just remember, we’ve been through this before,— Obama reminded his audience. “You just kept on working, steadily, deliberately, sensibly — knocking on doors.— Pointing to the excitement that initially greeted the selection of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as the running mate of GOP presidential nominee Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Obama said: “There’s something about August going into September when everyone in Washington gets all wee-wee’d up.—Obama laid out some talking points for his army of volunteers, telling them to focus on those with insurance as well as those without it.“First thing you have to explain to folks is, the status quo is unacceptable,— Obama said, describing the growing costs of the health care system. “If you’ve got a private plan, you’ve got something to worry about.—“Point number two— to make to people “is that, if you don’t have health insurance we’re not forcing you to go into a public plan.— Obama noted that he continues to back a public insurance option. The president said he wants to let Senate Finance Committee Democrats continue to try to reach a deal with Republicans on legislation, but he suggested he will not wait indefinitely for a bipartisan plan. “We’re going to get this done one way or another,— Obama said.