Monday, November 9, 2009

Healthcare Reform passes the House, but still has a long way to go.

Saturday Night, the House passed the Healthcare Reform bill by a vote of 220-215. All of the Georgia Republican Congressmen voted "NO" for the legislation, while Democrats John Lewis, David Scott, Hank Johnson all voted "Yes". Congressmen John Barrow & Jim Marshall voted "No" while Sanford Bishop voted "Yes". Only one Republican voted yes & that was a Louisiana Congressman who represents a overwhelimingly Democratic District.
"Fixing the broken health care system is one of the most important issues of this generation, and it's one of the reasons I came to Congress," Barrow said in a statement. "But this bill costs too much, doesn't regulate the insurance companies enough and doesn't reform the system in a way to make health care sustainable."

"Costs are through the roof," Marshall said, according to the Web site of Macon television station WMAZ-13. "I think we can expand access, maybe improve quality but maintain quality and control costs if we head in a slightly different direction."

Like Marshall, fellow Blue Dog Rep. Sanford Bishop, D-Albany, had expressed concerns about whether the Obama administration-backed plan provided enough protection for rural hospitals and health care providers.

“During my town hall meetings on health insurance reform last August, I said that we have a moral obligation to ensure that all Americans receive the health care they need to live healthy and productive lives,” Bishop said.

“I have long been concerned about the poor health indicators among my constituents, and this evening I cast a vote that I believe will have a significant impact on improving the lives of Southwest Georgians now and into the future.”
What will this all mean. Well, Barrow is most likely to get a challenge in the primary. It would be a surprise if he didn't get primaried, given how liberal groups like Moveon.Org, Netroots. Democracy for America has targeted Barrow in the past, Marshall, I highly doubt he will get primaried in the 8th. Even if he does, he will enjoy croossover support from republican voters & conservative democrats & Bishop, he already faces a challenge from State Rep. Mike Keown, a Right-Winger & aomeone I consider a product of the Tea Party movement down in South Georgia. But Bishop will be safe, barring some unforeseen consequence between now & 2010.
Now the Senate now has to come up with their version & according to Harry Reid, it may not come up for a vote until next year. It looked like for a while that the senate was close to a deal, but for some reason Reid decided to include a public option in the bill that most of the moderate democratic senators have voiced opposition to. If that's the roadblock that will keep the Healthcare Bill from Passing, you csn blame it on Reid & you wonder how will that sit with the White House. Stay Tuned.

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