Obama Cracks Whip, Cites Progress on Health Reform

'Now we've got to get over the finish line,' President tells Congress
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 17, 2009 4:34 PM CDT
Larry Summers, President Barack Obama's top economic adviser, gestures during an address to the International Economic Policy in Washington today.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – President Obama today praised “unprecedented progress” in Congress on health-care reform, the Boston Globe reports. In a hastily scheduled appearance meant to galvanize support amid some signs this week of Democratic dissent, Obama said he remained “absolutely convinced” a bill would be passed this year. “The last few miles of any race are the hardest to run,” he added.

In response to the Congressional Budget Office’s estimate that the health-care bill would boost federal spending, both Obama and top economic adviser Larry Summers argued today that efficiencies in Medicare/Medicaid and prevention programs will deliver savings difficult to work into official estimates. On Capitol Hill, two House committees voted along party lines to advance the bill.