Business Roundtable recently joined in a partnership with AARP and SEIU called Divided We Fail that is focused on raising health care reform and long-term financial security to the forefront of the political debate. We've been dubbed "strange bedfellows" by many onlookers, and admittedly we've been on opposite sides of issues in the past, but Divided We Fail is not about our differences, it's about fostering a new environment in our nation's capital, an environment for change.

Staggering health care costs are sapping American businesses, putting them at a significant competitive disadvantage and slowing economic growth. For the fourth consecutive year, the 160 CEOs of Business Roundtable cite health care as their number one cost pressure. Health care costs don't just strain businesses; they also place an enormous burden on American households. Too many American families are unable to afford health care coverage.

Health care reform and retirement security are two of the most pressing domestic issues of our time, issues that are bigger than any one organization or coalition or political party, issues that must be approached with new fervor and a renewed dedication in Washington. We call upon our political leaders to reach across the aisle and develop common sense, centrist solutions.

We are not calling for a Democratic plan or a Republican plan, a business plan or a labor plan – rather for an American plan, one that will give all Americans peace of mind about their health care and long-term financial security.