Obama intensifies push on House Democrats for health care

Jon Ward | Contributor

President Obama is calling more than two dozen House Democrats to the White House Thursday as he steps up the pressure on his party to pass health-care reform.

The lawmakers will come through in three groups. Obama will meet with 11 of the most liberal members of the House first, at 1:30 p.m., and then an hour later he’ll meet with seven from the New Democrat coalition, a group of self-described moderate Democrats.

Another eight House Democrats are part of the group of lawmakers coming to the president’s signing of the Travel Promotion Act just before noon.

Two of the Democrats coming to the bill signing — Rep. Suzanne Kosmas of Florida, and Rep. Mike Ross of Arkansas — voted against health care in November. Another no vote from November, Rep. Jason Altmire of Pennsylvania, is part of the New Democrat Coalition.

On Wednesday evening, another 10 of the no votes from November were invited to the White House for an event on pay-as-you-go legislation.

Rep. Anthony Weiner, New York Democrat, told the Daily Caller he thinks the president’s heightened involvement will be the difference in getting a bill passed.

“I’ve believed for months that with muscular presidential leadership we would get this done, and I think that the president is now putting his finger firmly on the scale,” Weiner said.

Weiner also said that liberal lawmakers voicing concerns about supporting the legislation will fall in line at the end of the day.

Here is the list of lawmakers coming to the White House today:

At 1:30PM EST, the president will meet with House Members in the Roosevelt Room. This meeting is closed press. Expected attendees include:
Representative Madeleine Bordallo, D-GU, Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus Chair, Health Care Task Force Chair
Representative Donna Christensen, D-VI, Congressional Black Caucus Chair, Health Care Task Force Co-chair
Representative Danny Davis, D-IL, Congressional Black Caucus Chair, Health Care Task Force Co-chair
Representative Raul Grijalva, D-AZ, Congressional Progressive Caucus Co-chair
Representative Mike Honda, D-CA, Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus Chair
Representative Dennis Kucinich, D-OH, Congressional Progressive Caucus, Health Care Task Force Co-chair
Representative Barbara Lee, D-CA, Congressional Black Caucus Chair
Representative Lucille Roybal-Allard, D-CA, Congressional Hispanic Caucus, Health Care Task Force Co-Chair
Representative Jan Schakowsky, D-IL, Congressional Progressive Caucus, Health Care Task Force Co-chair
Representative Nydia Velazquez, D-NY, Congressional Hispanic Caucus Chair
Representative Lynn Woolsey, D-CA, Congressional Progressive Caucus Co-chair

At 2:30PM EST, the President will meet with leadership of the New Democrat Coalition in the Oval Office. This meeting is closed press. Expected attendees include:
Representative Jason Altmire, D-PA, Health Task Force Co-Chair
Representative Melissa Bean, D- IL, Vice-Chair & Whip
Representative Lois Capps, D-CA, Health Task Force Co-Chair
Representative Joseph Crowley, D-NY, Chair
Representative Ron Kind, D-WI, Vice-Chair
Representative Allyson Schwartz, D-PA, Vice-Chair, Health Task Force Co-Chair
Representative Adam Smith, D-WA, Vice-Chair

Also, expected attendees at today’s 11:35AM EST signing of the Travel Promotion Act in the Oval Office include:
Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke
Senator Harry Reid, D-NV
Senator Byron Dorgan, D-ND
Senator Amy Klobuchar, D-MN
Senator George LeMieux, R-FL
Senator John Ensign, R-NV
Representative Joe Barton, R-TX
Representative Shelley Berkley, D-NV
Representative Robert Brady, D-PA
Representative Russ Carnahan, D-MO
Representative Bill Delahunt, D-MA
Representative Alan Grayson, D-FL
Representative Suzanne Kosmas, D-FL
Representative Mike Ross, D-AR
Representative Dina Titus, D-NV

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