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Gibbs: Public option still on table on health care

WASHINGTON (AP) - Chief White House spokesman Robert Gibbs says President Barack Obama will again cite a need for a public option on health insurance when he gives a prime-time speech to the nation.

Gibbs said in an interview on CBS's "The Early Show" today that Obama wants to "speak clearly and directly to the American people about what's in this bill for them."

Gibbs was asked if Obama was willing to abandon a government-run plan to get a bill through Congress. He replied, "No, the president tonight will talk about the public option and will talk about the need for competition" with the private insurance market.

The White House acknowledges foes have managed to raise "big questions" in the minds of many Americans. Aides say Obama's top goal tonight is answering those questions, especially for the millions who have health coverage and are satisfied with it.


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