U.S. Rep. John Kline knows his buttons. As a Marine, he stayed at the side of Presidents Reagan and Carter, carrying the satchel known as the “nuclear football” that holds the how-to kit for pressing the most fearsome button of all. Now he’s once again the go-to guy, carrying the ball for Republicans who want to blow up current health care reform plans by “hitting the re-set button.”
Kline gave the GOP response to President Obama’s weekly address, reaching a bit for Labor Day relevance by tying fears about health care reform to fears about job losses. (Gov. Pawlenty had his turn delivering the Republican message last April before another holiday — Tax Day.)
It’s a new role for Kline, a strong, silent type whose conservative credentials helped him leapfrog more senior Republicans in June to become the ranking member on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee.
Now he’s the GOP’s official point man attacking Democrats’ efforts to reform health care — though he’s outdone almost daily by his colleague in Minnesota’s Congressional delegation: Michele Bachmann.
She held a townhall on the topic; he won’t. But the man who once carried the suitcase containing the presidential Denny’s-style menu for nuclear war told a telephone townhall meeting that Senate Democrats passing health care reform by simple majority would be “the nuclear option, because it would cause the Senate to explode.”
The video of Kline’s Republican address is below. Here are the main themes:
Be very afraid
American families are worried … If you think that’s frightening, I’m sorry to say it could get even worse … No wonder Americans are scared … They also fear, and rightly so …
Au revoir, doc
What will happen to my coverage, and my choice of doctors? … the comfort of a familiar physician … Democrats’ plans may cost patients the right to see their family doctor …
Did I mention the re-set button?
It’s time to press the ‘reset’ button … It’s not too late to start over … honor American workers by hitting the ‘reset’ button on health care reform …
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