Bush said he would do it, and as we know he never deviates from his word: he vetoed the children's health insurance program passed by Congress. The bill would have subsidized healthcare coverage for more than 6 million people, mostly children, in families that earn too much to qualify for Medicaid but not enough to afford private coverage. In other words, the poor, working and middle classes. The bill was supported by the AARP, the American Medical Association, and the American Cancer Society (in part because the bill was to be funded by a tax on cigarettes).
Bush vetoed it because:
1. It cost too much.
So, he's seeking an additional $190 billion to fund the continued occupation of Iraq, at high cost to American lives, and is saying that a measure to provide health care to poor, working and middle classes--that costs less than one-fifth of what he wants to continue the occupation--is "too much." Oh, and I'm guessing that, unlike SCHIP, the $190 billion for Iraq won't be funded by a $1-a-pack cigarette tax.
2. It took the program too far from its original intent of helping just the poor.
Yes, God forbid we also help the working and middle classes, and their children.
3. It would entice people now covered in the private sector to switch to government coverage.
His point being? Look, if I've got insurance through work, and it's good insurance, I'm not going to switch to government coverage. But if I'm insured through work and very little is covered, and I have to come out of pocket for almost all expenses? Then what's wrong with me switching to government coverage? I'll have more money to sock away for my children's education expenses, or my retirement. Or, as Bush would prefer, to spend on mindless consumerism. Either way, it's win-win.
4. It's too close to "socialized medicine."
Yes, government-subsidized health care is so evil ... except when your grandfather was a Senator and your family had government-subsidized (i.e., taxpayer-funded) healthcare. Or when your father was at CIA and had government-subsidized healthcare. Or when you were governor of Texas, and so on...
This is only the 4th bill Bush has vetoed. Two involved stem cell research, and the other was for the withdrawal of troops from Iraq. All four of these bills had the potential to save lives. "Culture of life," my ass.