Washington, D. C. – President Barack Obama speaks before a joint session of Congress tonight in an effort to unify the American people regarding health care reform. Kentucky's First District Republican Congressman Ed Whitfield opposes a public option. Whitfield says unification issues within the Democratic party could make or break the health care bill. He cites conflict at the beginning of the year between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's eagerness to move a Cap and Trade bill through the house and Obama's call for bi-partisan support.
"Which raises the question of how much he is really able to influence Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reed, and whether or not there are any conflicts going on there because he regularly says one thing and then they act the other way."
Whitfield has released a ten-step alternative to a public health plan. Chief White House spokesman Robert Gibbs says President Barack Obama will not give up his advocacy of a public health insurance option when he gives his prime-time speech to the nation. WKMS will carry NPR's live coverage beginning at 7 tonight.