U.S. House passes health care bill

  • Jerry Cornfield
  • Sunday, March 21, 2010 8:57pm
  • Local News

The U.S. House of Representatives approved the health insurance reform bill on a 219-212 vote tonight.

Not too surprisingly, Washington’s delegation split its votes along party lines with Democrats in support and Republicans in opposition.

That means ‘aye’ votes were cast by Reps. Rick Larsen, Jay Inslee, Brian Baird, Adam Smith, Jim McDermott and Norm Dicks. And the ‘nay’ votes came from Reps. Dave Reichert, Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Doc Hastings

Among those celebrating Sunday night was Democratic U.S. Sen. Patty Murray. She issued a statement that begins:

“Today’s historic vote brings Washington state families and small business owners one step closer to lower premiums, more choices, and the health care security and stability they deserve. Health insurance reform will put important health care decisions back into the hands of patients and their doctors and will finally force insurance companies to compete for the business of the American people.

In his statement, state Democratic Party Chairman Dwight Pelz cheered loudly and took aim at Republicans.

“For Democrats, Health Care Reform is the Holy Grail of progressive change. Despite the unconscionable opposition of the Republican Party, the Democrats in Congress have prevailed and passed the most critical piece of domestic legislation since Medicare.”

“History will judge Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid as courageous leaders. McConnell, Boehner, and Congressional Republicans will be seen as a herd of ostriches with their heads in the sand and their hands in the pockets of the insurance companies.”

On the Republican side, McMorris Rodgers put out a statement prior to the vote that concluded:

“There’s no question that America needs health care reform, but the American people know this is the wrong policy and the wrong process.”

And Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele leveled a shot at Baird for backing the bill.

“Last year, Rep. Brian Baird voted against the Democrats’ trillion dollar government-run health care experiment, because it raises premiums, increases costs and slashes Medicare. But now that he’s not running for re-election, Baird has decided to vote for this terrible bill, which means he has stopped fighting for Washington State and will be forever remembered as the Congressman who sold-out his constituents in the ninth-inning for Team Obama.”

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