By Sam Youngman - 10/21/09 12:34 AM EDT
Obama, speaking to donors to the Democratic National Committee (DNC), said he didn’t have sympathy for those “sitting on the sidelines and rooting for failure.”
He then embraced a new campaign by the DNC that invites Republicans to “grab a mop” and help clean up what Democrats say is a mess created by the Bush administration.
“I don’t mind cleaning up the mess that some other folks made, that’s what I signed up to do," Obama said. “But while I’m there mopping the floor I don’t want someone saying ‘You’re not mopping fast enough or you’re not holding the mop the right way.’ Grab a mop! Why don’t you help clean up?”
The president also noted the support healthcare reform has garnered from big-name Republicans such as the former Senate GOP leaders Bob Dole and Bill Frist.
Obama, singled out the Senate Finance Committee bill after praising all of the healthcare bills that have been moved by Congress.
“All the bills that have been passed, despite the various differences, all of them would provide help to millions of people who don’t have coverage,” Obama said.
He noted that the Finance bill would provide health insurance to 29 million people now uninsured.
The president also urged Democrats to fall in line and not lose focus on passing reform.
“There are going to be some fierce arguments in the days ahead, that’s how it should be, that’s how our democracy works," Obama said. "But I want all the Democrats who are in the house to understand what a profound potential achievement this is and stay focused on the goal line.”
The president said lawmakers are coming to the table because reform is inevitable.
“We’ve got people who are engaging even if they don’t want to engage because they realize it’s not a matter of what, it’s a matter of when,” Obama said.