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Serial Number: 34897-22

Signing of the Medicare Bill (07/30/1965)
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Serial Number: 34897-22
Date: 07/30/1965
Credit: LBJ Library photo by Unknown
Event: Signing of the Medicare Bill
Location: Harry S. Truman Library, Independence, Missouri
Description: L-R: President Lyndon B. Johnson, Lady Bird Johnson, President Harry S. Truman, Vice President Hubert Humphrey, Bess Truman
Collection: WHPO
Topic: Health Care
Rights Status: Public Domain
Rights Information: This image is in the public domain and may be used free of charge without permissions or fee

The Health Care Debate & LBJ

In 1965, President Johnson signed the Medicare bill, providing health care for senior citizens and the poor. Medicare is one part of the current robust debate in this country about health care. Please read news articles, commentaries, and see a video about the health care discussion by President and Mrs. Johnson's daughter, Lynda Johnson Robb,

The New York Times
“L.B.J.’s Daughter Defends Medicare, Her Father’s Legacy”
By Katharine Q. Seelye
Here’s a blast from the past. While everyone is talking about Medicare, Lynda Bird Johnson Robb is stepping up to remind everyone that it was her father, former President Lyndon B. Johnson, who signed Medicare into law in the first place. [read more...]

The Financial Times
“To succeed, Obama needs to channel his inner LBJ”
By Steven Hill
LBJ has been one of America's most underrated presidents. He held the office for most of the 1960s, a tumultuous decade when the nation was torn by race riots and the struggle for civil rights. [read more...]

“What Would LBJ Do”
By Tom Johnson
President Lyndon B. Johnson secured passage of Medicare, the Voting Rights Act and other milestone legislation. Tom Johnson, who served as one of LBJ's White House press secretaries, is former chief executive of CNN News Group and former publisher of the Los Angeles Times. [read more...]

“Unplugged: LBJ Had Unique Talent to Pass Medicare”
Posted by Michelle Levi
Former President Lyndon B. Johnson had a unique talent for “bullying” and “cajoling” which helped him pass Medicare legislation early in his presidency, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institute Stephen Hess and Newsweek’s Eleanor Clift agreed on “Washington Unplugged” Wednesday. [read more...]

“President Obama needs a deal maker”
By Julian E. Zelizer
Even after the powerful speech by President Barack Obama to a joint session of Congress, the fate of health care reform remains uncertain. [read more...]

The New York Times
“Obamacare Can't Win an All-In Wager”
By Priscilla Totiyapungprasert
The fate of the Obama health care initiative could rest in large part with some members of his party’s left wing, who threaten to let the perfect be the enemy of the good. [read more...]

Newsweek, Inc.
“Better Angels and Arm Twisters”
By Eleanor Clift
Lyndon Johnson was a master of the legislative arts, having served as Senate majority leader before moving to the White House. [read more...]

USA Today
“Obama should emulate LBJ”
By Sandy Grady
The president won’t win health care reform with Ted Kennedy’s memory alone. As Johnson learned in the battle for the civil rights bill, at some point, it’s time to lead the fight. [read more...]

“Show Some Spine, Mr. President”
By Helen Thomas
If Obama wants to win, he could tear a page out of Lyndon B. Johnson’s book on sure-fire ways to overcome congressional resistance. [read more...]

The New York Times
“Don't Let Dead Cats Stand on Your Porch”
For tips on how to manage it, there’s no better adviser than Lyndon B. Johnson, who won Medicare over fierce opposition in 1965. [read more...]

Los Angeles Times
“It's time for Obama to take off the kid gloves”
By Michael Hiltzik
Here's my advice for President Obama as the crunchtime arrives for such major initiatives as healthcare reform and climate change: Get mean already. [read more...]

The Brown Daily Herald
“Looking at health care one president at a time”
By Kyla Wilkes
If he wants to successfully pass health care reform, President Obama should move quickly and disregard his economic advisers. [read more...]

The White House
“Remarks by the President”
I want to begin by congratulating all of the recipients of the Phoenix Award for outstanding contributions to American life. [read more...]

“Top Liberal Agrees: Cost of Health Reform Could Wreck Economy”
by Michael Medved
The Heart of Power highlights the shameless effort by Lyndon Johnson to conceal the true costs of Medicare in order to secure its passage in 1965. [read more...]