Boehner implores Dems to 'make tough choice' and defeat healthcare bill

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) called for fellow lawmakers to "make tough choices" ahead of a planned Sunday healthcare vote.

Boehner, in the weekly GOP radio address, appealed to wavering Democrats to join Republicans to help defeat healthcare reform legislation.

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"We were elected to make tough choices, not run from them," Boehner said. "And this vote is certainly one of the toughest."

Democrats hope to vote to pass health reform legislation on Sunday in what is expected to be a close vote with a razor-thin margin.

The Republican leader made his case to undecided members to work with the GOP to defeat the bill, which is serves as the top domestic priority for President Barack Obama.

Underscoring the stakes of the vote, Boehner reminded them that he's requested a "call of the roll" vote on Sunday, meaning that each lawmaker would stand and publicly announce their vote, instead of a vote recorded by electronics.

"I asked Speaker Pelosi to have the final health care votes recorded by a ‘call of the roll,'" Boehner explained. "Under this procedure, each lawmaker will have to stand before the American people and announce his or her vote."


Boehner and Republicans will return to the House tomorrow, as will Democrats, as they race toward a planned vote tomorrow. Lawmakers appeared to be hanging onto issues like abortion on Friday night.

The minority leader conceded Republicans couldn't beat the bill alone, symbolically suggesting Democrats would be needed to join them.

“Republicans can’t beat this bill, but the American people can," he said. "It’s not too late to make your voice heard."