Obama: I ran into a ‘buzzsaw’ in Massachusetts over health care

Jon Ward Contributor
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President Obama on Friday admitted that his efforts at health-care reform ran into a “buzzsaw” with the Democrats loss of Ted Kennedy’s seat in Massachusetts.

“I’ve got to admit, we hit a little bit of a buzzsaw this week,” Obama said, speaking to a town hall meeting at a community college in Ohio.

The future of the president’s healthcare reform is now in doubt, as Democratic leaders in Congress struggle to figure out a strategy for passing a bill. So far, they have not been able to find a path forward.

But the president mocked those who have raised questions about the future of his presidency.

“What does it mean for Obama? Is he weakened? Oh, how is he going to survive this?” Obama said.

“That’s what they do,” he said with a shrug.

Obama, eschewing a neck tie for the campaign uniform of an open-collar shirt and business jacket, kicked his populist rhetoric into overdrive.

“So long as I have some breath in me … I will not stop fighting for you,” Obama told a wildly cheering audience. “I will take my lumps, but I won’t stop fighting to bring back jobs here.”

“I win when you win. That’s how I think about it,” he said.

The word “fight” appeared 14 times in Obama’s prepared remarks.

UPDATE: Obama used “fight” or “fighting” 21 times.

UPDATE #2: Politico’s Mike Allen counts 22 uses of the word “fight.”

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