Opinion: Obama’s healthcare summit to listen: But the host talks the most

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In case you got so wrapped up in the wonky drama of Thursday’s bipartisan healthcare summit and forgot to track the time, the office of Sen. Mitch McConnell helpfully did it for you.

For some bizarre reason having to do with working in Washington more than 24 hours, the distinctly minority Republican representatives meeting with President Obama and his Democratic posse suspected they might get the short end of the timing switch when it came to talking on national TV.

And you will be shocked to learn that, according to the GOP timers, they did.


According to that count, Republican voices could be heard for 110 minutes out of the meeting’s 343 minutes.

Democrats were speaking for 114 minutes.

Which seems about equal unless you count Obama as a Democrat, which many people do.

In that case, Democrats out-clocked Republicans 233-110.

At one point, McConnell raised the issue of time imbalance, prompting this comment by Obama:

‘You’re right, there was an imbalance on the opening statements because I’m the president and so I made...(Laughter) I didn’t -- I didn’t count my time in terms of dividing it evenly.’

Related item:

Healthcare summit opening remarks: Obama, Alexander, Pelosi, Reid

-- Andrew Malcolm

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