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New Obama Health Care Strategy May Include a 'Major Speech'

3:23 PM, Sep 2, 2009 • By MARY KATHARINE HAM
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Update: Ante, upped. He'll be addressing a joint session of Congress on Sept. 9. So, he'll be doing the same thing he's been doing, but in a very serious venue. I wonder if the joint session will be assigned as homework watching during the president's speech to schoolkids on Sept. 8.

You don't say.

President Barack Obama is considering giving a major speech detailing specifics on what he would like to see included in a health-care reform bill, a senior White House aide said Wednesday.

Senior advisor David Axelrod told CNN, the president is looking at the possibility of a speech as "one of his options" in pushing forward his health care agenda after he returns from vacation at Camp David next week.

Obama has outlined broad principles for what he would like in health-care reform, but he has left most details to leaders in Congress. Now, White House aides say, the dynamic has changed.

At this point, even avid politicos are having trouble parsing the president's various "major speeches," press conferences, remarks, town halls, and rhetorical shifts on health care. The general public will almost certainly wonder why the most exposed president in the history of the United States is taking to the mic yet again.

His appearances read like a list of unfortunate "Friends" episodes: "The One Where Obama Started an Ill-Advised Week-Long P.R. War With Cambridge Cops," "The One Where Obama Showed Up 45 Minutes Late, Made No News, and Answered No Questions," "The One Where Obama Promised to Go Through the Legislation He's Never Read Line-by-Line With Congress," "The One Where Obama Was Asked About 'Mean Signs' by the 11-Year-Old Daughter of an Obama Volunteer," "The One Where Obama Claimed His Plan Had AARP's Endorsement, When It Didn't," and "The One Where Obama Said He'd Never Supported Single-Payer."

Does he really think another episode is going to help?

The WSJ previews the new strategy, which promises more vilification of insurance companies and more blaming of Republicans. Stay tuned for "The One Where Obama Tries the Same Thing He's Been Trying for Six Months With the Same Results." Great TV.