Boehner: Why Discuss Health Bill That Can't Pass?

Tuesday, 09 Feb 2010 10:42 PM

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Emerging from a 90-minute meeting with President Obama that dodged the issue of healthcare reform, House Minority Leader John Boehner and other top congressional Republicans Tuesday said they may boycott Feb. 25 talks on further healthcare legislation.

"It's going to be very difficult to have bipartisan conversations with regard to a 2,700 page healthcare bill that the Democrat majority in the House and the Democrat majority in the Senate can’t pass," House Minority Leader John Boehner told Fox News. "Why are we going to talk about a bill that can’t pass? It really is time to scrap the bill and start over."

Boehner said House Republicans are only willing to "consider" attending the bi-partisan healthcare talks at the Blair House, the stately quarters across Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House.

"We’re trying to understand from the White House what we’re trying to accomplish," Boehner said. "We need to know where we’re going to start from.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell echoed that sentiment.

"Listen to the American people," McConnell told reporters gathered just outside the West Wing. "They are overwhelming opposed to the bill that the House and Senate have looked at. What we need to do is start over and go step-by-step."

Asked what Republicans meant by starting over, McConnell told Fox. "Focus on costs. Costs are the problem. We need to target costs."

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