Obama pitching health care plan to the insured - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Obama pitching health care plan to the insured

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PORTSMOUTH, N.H. - President Barack Obama is defending his health care overhaul against criticism that it would be a government takeover.

Addressing a town hall in New Hampshire, Obama said Tuesday that he doesn't think government bureaucrats should be meddling in health care decisions involving patients and doctors.

"I also don't think insurance company bureaucrats should be meddling," said the president.

Obama embarked on a series of town halls to regain the momentum on his top domestic priority. Weeks of noisy and angry town halls intensified pressure on Obama and Democrats.

"After all the chatter and shouting and the noise Americans will soon have more and cheaper options for health care," said President Obama.

Lawmaker faces angry Pennsylvania crowd on health care

Republican-turned-Democratic Sen. Arlen Specter has faced a barrage of sometimes hostile questions about health care from wary and frustrated voters.

At a crowded town hall Tuesday, the Pennsylvania senator heard from speaker after speaker who accused him of trampling on their constitutional rights or allowing the government to take over health care.

Specter tried gamely to explain his positions, saying he wouldn't vote for a bill that adds to the deficit. He also said he wouldn't support a bill that extends coverage to illegal immigrants. None of the bill in Congress would provide health insurance to illegal immigrants.

As lawmakers have returned to their states this month, they have faced angry crowds questioning President Barack Obama's health care overhaul.

President Barack Obama wades in this afternoon with his own town hall in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. He plans to highlight how his proposals would affect workers whose employers provide their health insurance.

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