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Obama agenda: Blocking rate hikes

"President Obama will propose on Monday giving the federal government new power to block excessive rate increases by health insurance companies, as he rolls out comprehensive legislation to revamp the nation's health care system, White House officials said Sunday," the New York Times writes. "By focusing on the effort to tighten regulation of insurance costs, a new element not included in either the House or Senate bills, Mr. Obama is seizing on outrage over recent premium increases of up to 39 percent announced by Anthem Blue Cross of California and moving to portray the Democrats' health overhaul as a way to protect Americans from profiteering insurers." 

Obama's Day: In addition to the White House's health care proposal, the president "is also meeting with the nation's governors at the White House. He will urge states to better prepare high school students for college and careers… In the afternoon, Obama meets with California's Republican governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, in the Oval Office."  
 
(By the way, "Schwarzenegger on Sunday called Republican opponents of the $787 billion economic stimulus bill hypocritical if they then turn around and praise district projects created by that stimulus legislation," The Hill notes.)

"Democratic governors said yesterday that they worry about President Obama's track record on fighting Republican political attacks and urged him to better connect with anxious voters. Some allies pleaded for a new election-year strategy focused on the economy."

The New York Times on the governors: "With the Senate poised to take a first test vote on a jobs bill, governors said Sunday that they still needed assistance from the federal government but urged Congress to focus more on creating jobs in the private sector."