First some morning stats on time spoken this morning during Obama’s healthcare summit:

Democrats: 108 minutes (Obama: 58 minutes)
Republicans: 56 minutes

Quote of the day, by Obama: “There was an imbalance on the opening statements because I’m the President. So, I made – I didn’t count my time in terms of dividing it evenly.”

Despite the stacked deck, here were these observations on the morning half of summit from MSM (GOP Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell)…

CNN’s Wolf Blitzer: “It looks like the Republicans certainly showed up ready to play.” (CNN’s “Live”)

obama biden healthcare summit guardian.jpg

CNN’s David Gergen: “The folks in the White House just must be kicking themselves right now. They thought that coming out of Baltimore when the President went in and was mesmerizing and commanding in front of the House Republicans that he could do that again here today. That would revive health care and would change the public opinion about their health care bill and they can go on to victory. Just the opposite has happened.” (CNN’s “Live”)
Gergen: “He doesn’t have a strong Democratic team behind him.” (CNN’s “Live”)
CNN’s Gloria Borger: “The Republicans have been very effective today. They really did come to play. They were very smart.” (CNN’s “Live”)
Borger: “They took on the substance of a very complex issue…. But they really stuck to the substance of this issue and tried to get to the heart of it and I think did a very good job.” (CNN’s “Live”)
Borger: “They came in with a plan. They mapped it out.” (CNN’s “Live”)

republicans, healthcare summit, reuters.jpg

The Hill’s A. B. Stoddard: “I think we need to start out by acknowledging Republicans brought their ‘A Team.’ They had doctors knowledgeable about the system, they brought substance to the table, and they, I thought, expressed interest in the reform. I thought in the lecture from Senator John McCain and on the issue of transparency, I thought today the Democrats were pretty much on their knees.” (Fox News’ “Live”)
The Weekly Standard’s Steve Hayes: “I think to me the most important thing to come out of the morning so far is that Republicans have spent a great deal of time talking with great passion, and I think eagerness about their plans, detailing the plans that until this morning them Democrats had been saying didn’t exist. Well, you now see, I think, in great detail that Republicans do have plans, that they care about the same issues and that they feel passionately about it.” (Fox News’ “Live”)

Runner-up quote of the day: Obama, “The election’s over.” McCain: “I’m reminded of that every day.” (Also note McCain called Obama “Mr. President,” and Obama called McCain “John”)

[Top photo via The Guardian; bottom photo via Reuters]

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