Former Obama Press Secretary Calls on Nashville Healthcare Leaders to Push for Compromise

Robert Gibbs, former White House press secretary and special advisor to President Barack Obama, called on Nashville’s healthcare leaders to help forge political compromise and move the nation forward after the 2012 election season comes to a close.

“I hope we have a boisterous, loud debate leading up to the election on November 6th. After that, leaders need to sit down and work together to solve problems,” said Gibbs, speaking to the 100 attendees of Leadership Health Care’s 10-Year Anniversary Delegation to Washington, D.C.

Groups like the Nashville Health Care Council’s Leadership Health Care (LHC), he said, should then “push political leaders of both parties” to move the country forward through compromise so, at the end of the day, we achieve progress on the substantive issues facing the nation.

In his keynote address, Gibbs also provided his thoughts on the closely contested 2012 presidential primary, as well as campaigning. As one of President Obama’s closest advisors since the 2004 Senate win, Gibbs noted the most grueling days on the campaign trail did not compare to the easiest days of the White House because the decisions required by the Oval Office have no easy answers.

Gibbs noted LHC’s visit occurred at an interesting time, in the days leading up to the Supreme Court’s review of the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

Gibbs said he expects one of three things will happen with the court’s review – the law will be struck down, the law will be upheld or the individual mandate will be struck down and the rest of the law will be upheld. But on one thing, he said, we can all agree:

“We have the greatest healthcare system on the planet,” he said, “but it also needs updating.”

Photo credit: (c) 2012 Bill Burke/Page One