Bush Rejects Plan to Expand Health Care for Kids

Prez rejects bipartisan bill despite pleas from Republican senators
By Sam Gale Rosen,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 19, 2007 10:30 AM CDT
President Bush pauses as he delivers remarks on the Israeli-Palestinian Issues, Monday, July 16, 2007, in the Cross Hall of the White House in Washington. The president, taking on a more active role in...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – President Bush rebuffed a health care compromise yesterday that would expand a program that provides coverage to poor children. The Senate's bipartisan proposal would insure 3.3 million more kids, but Bush says he'll veto any expansion of government health care on philosophical grounds—despite pleas from within the GOP.

"You have consensus across party and ideology," complains Rahm Emanuel, "except for one person." Senators Baucus, Grassley, Hatch, and others propose raising funding for the program by $60 billion over the next five years, paying for the increase with an ramped-up cigarette tax, which Bush also opposes.