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Perriello wants promise from Senate on health bill before he'll vote yes

By Ben Pershing
Virginia Rep. Tom Perriello (D) said Friday that he would vote in favor of Democrats' health package this weekend, but only after he gets a promise from the Senate that it will pass "fixes" to the bill designed to make it more palatable to the House.

Perriello spokeswoman Jessica Barba confirmed that Perriello's support for the measure was "conditional on a letter signed by 51 Senators saying they will follow through on reconciliation fixes." Other House Democrats have broached a similar idea, as they fear that they will pass the Senate bill but the Senate will fail to move the subsequent "fixes" bill.

So far, there has been no evidence that such a letter is forthcoming from the Senate, although Democratic leaders in that chamber have done their best to reassure the House that they will be able to get the whole package through.

Perriello voted in favor of the original House bill in November but had been publicly undecided on the final package. He did give reform backers some hope earlier this week when he said that the Senate bill's language on abortion funding was acceptable to him.

Perriello's 5th district -- which stretches south from Charlottesville to the North Carolina border -- is being heavily targeted by Republicans.

By Ben Pershing  |  March 19, 2010; 3:13 PM ET
Categories:  Capitol Briefing , Health Care  
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Anger is the last bastion of a weak thought.

Those who express anger at the current health care reform are in need of some good rest.

You all put up a good fight. Now you need to be great Americans and support this landmark decision. But please don't go to Costa Rica!

Even though we may disagree we still need you here.

Vive la différence!

Posted by: truthlight | March 21, 2010 1:57 AM | Report abuse

Speaking of promises: Barry the lying weasel Obama promised: "If your family earns less than $250,000 a year, you will not see your taxes increased a single dime. I repeat: not one single dime."

However Obamacare forces you to buy Obamacare or pay a tax of 2.5% of your income to the IRS. For a family earning just under the $250,000 a year level that would be $6,250 EACH YEAR in new taxes.
Posted by: screwjob11-----------------------------------------------------------------

You lie!! There are no references out there that prove your point.

Posted by: ginabw | March 20, 2010 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Okay. So Harry Reid promises you the world. What are you going to do when HE'S not re-elected?

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | March 19, 2010 11:40 PM | Report abuse

If this guy thinks the Senate will promise anything like that before his vote, he's an ever bigger ding-dong head than the anencephalic phlegm wads who are voting for it without a Senate promise. He won his 2008 election by fewer than 700 votes. Mobilize his base? What base? What's he going to mobilize it with? Chewing tobacco? If he votes for this, he's toast in November. He's more worried about cowering to Nancy's skirts now than facing his district in the fall. Do you know why male Democrats aren't athletes? No balls.

Posted by: hofbrauhausde | March 19, 2010 10:11 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of promises: Barry the lying weasel Obama promised: "If your family earns less than $250,000 a year, you will not see your taxes increased a single dime. I repeat: not one single dime."

However Obamacare forces you to buy Obamacare or pay a tax of 2.5% of your income to the IRS. For a family earning just under the $250,000 a year level that would be $6,250 EACH YEAR in new taxes.

Posted by: screwjob11 | March 19, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

As reading these comments makes very clear, this Congressman has one choice and one choice only; vote for the bill and get this base re-invigorated to support him in the fall. Voting against it will gain him nothing from those opposed to the bill; it will totally demoralize his base. Vote for it, get it done, and campaign on WHY it was right to do so. It's his one and only route to re-election.

Posted by: LarryMason1 | March 19, 2010 9:17 PM | Report abuse

Another one-term freshman Democrat. Those supporting this bill have no idea whats its going to do.

1. Mandatory purchase of insurance with the IRS fining you if you dont buy it.
2. Taxes on medical device manufacturers...driving them out of business.
3. Increase deficit. no government program has never come in under budget or even.
4. Forcing companies to choose between providing insurance or dropping it andy paying the 750 per employee fine.

Shoud this pass, it will bankrupt us.

Posted by: vrbjunk | March 19, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

This is such CRAP, please make it stop.

We all know how this guy is going to vote, just like Kucinich of Ohio, he a Pelosi "Yes" man.

Congressional farces, all of them.

Posted by: eriksorenson | March 19, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

Promises? Is this guy kidding... or what? Promises...forget about it! What's a'matter with you Perriello?

Posted by: sperrico | March 19, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

I live in the fifth district and voted for Tom, as did my husband, as will my daughter who has been looking forward to being old enough to vote IF IF IF he votes for the bill. My other daughter who is not old enough has already volunteered to work on his campaign. The teabags might be loud, but the coffee party has grown much quicker (and larger in one month of existence) without any of the nonsense, and with a strong interest in seeing PROGRESSIVE change. Let us not be the last country in the free world to take care of our poorest, weakest and oldest. And that little rant about "socialism"? If you do not like the idea of socialism, please stay out of the libraries, don't send your kids to public schools, don't collect social security when you retire and try not to call the fire department or the police if your house is burning or being robbed (as all these pograms and instititions are in many ways, "socialist").And if it really bothers you when the healthcare bill gets passed, refuse your Medicaid and the healthcare provided on principle and pay out of pocket. I expect all the Repubs that vote against it to do just this- you know, refuse their GOVERNMENT PROVIDED healthcare, if they don't feel the people that employ them deserve the same.
Tom, please ignore the teabagging glub-glubs outside the glass building and vote for the bill!!!!

Posted by: mmaggior | March 19, 2010 7:27 PM | Report abuse

He wants a "promise" from Harry Reid?

Just how naive is this guy?

Let him vote for it so the moderates can vote him and his naivite out of office in the Fall.

Posted by: oldnova | March 19, 2010 7:24 PM | Report abuse

He wants a "promise" from a politician.

Can this guy be any more naive?

Us voters know that a promise from a politician is worth the price of the hot air that was used to form the utterence.

Vote no or be looking for a new job come Fall.


Posted by: oldnova | March 19, 2010 7:17 PM | Report abuse

When have promises ever been kept in Congress? Obama health care only helps Obama. Don't let them fool you. I've had government health care. I could go to any doctor but not every doctor would accept the insurance so I was stuck with the balance or the bill.

Posted by: 45upnorth | March 19, 2010 6:56 PM | Report abuse

What nonsense. Who in the Senate is going to "promise" anything like that, and by whose authority? Harry the horse's asp Reid?

Perriello should be voted out of office for that boneheaded statement alone.

Posted by: screwjob11 | March 19, 2010 6:55 PM | Report abuse

I am a Perriello supporter who campaigned for him in 2008 and will again this fall, but I want him to vote for the bill. He will win no votes from those who oppose it anyway and he will disappoint his friends if he fails to support it.

Vote for the bill!

Posted by: ahprice | March 19, 2010 6:44 PM | Report abuse

I am disgusted by my Democratic Reps in Virginia. Seems Warner Webb and Nye are too business friendly to give a rat's %#* about the uninsured, underinsured and self employed folks in Virginia. Doesn't matter which party you vote for here on the plantation. Business friendly rules the day.

Posted by: fabricmaven1 | March 19, 2010 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Man up and vote already. These undecideds are looking for attention and payoff.

You have nothing to lose...except your job if you vote "yes." And then don't let the door hit you on the way out.

Posted by: NoWayNotNow | March 19, 2010 6:30 PM | Report abuse

I'm having a hard time not picturing lynch-like mobs forming spontaneously if the right wing doesn't get its way. I don't recall them be elected to lead anything last go round. But their rhetoric indicates that they do not accept the judgment of America's voters nor the legitimacy of Congress, assembled, nor of the President. Health insurance companies must be protected by all means. Unworthy Americans must continue be denied health care (except at great expense in emergency departments).
As the RNC head put it: "All of the media misdirection, co-opting of insurers and pharmaceutical companies, sweetheart deals for Big Labor, kowtowing to ambulance chasing trial lawyers, "Cornhusker Kickbacks" and "Louisiana Purchases," Medicare slashing and misleading budget gimmicks, campaign-style rallies, dog-and-pony "summits," and flat-out arrogant dismissal of the American peoples' disapproval can be wrapped up by this weekend." Is there truth in that dump? Or is he simply expressing the pain that he feels at the prospect of change.

Posted by: BlueTwo1 | March 19, 2010 6:02 PM | Report abuse

You vote for this bill and you're done Perri-boy.

Posted by: conservativemaverick | March 19, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Marketing... this was a marketing failure. Keith O said it best when he characterized terms such as "public option" as being vulnerable to misinterpretation. It is in fact arrogant legal speak. Had as Keith O suggested this been called. "Medicare for everyone"; the fascists would have had a harder time lying and spinning to the American populous which I am sad to say is basically dumb outside of liberal areas.

Posted by: veronihilverius | March 19, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: racerdoc @ March 18, 2010 10:17 PM

Let me see if I get this straight.
A women in a middle income family that is paying approximately. TO make ends meet, both parents work. They make approximately $60,000 a year combined. They already have two children. Taxes take over $11000 from their income making their take home pay less than $50,000 a year.
NOw the woman gets pregnant when their birth control fails.
Lets examine there budget
1. They pay $1500 a month on mortgage/rent
2. Utilites are another $500 on utilities
3. Transportation and fuel $200
4. Food and sustenance $300
5. Clothing and sundries $100
6. Insurance (HOME HEALTH AUTO) $1500
7. Retirement and savings $300
While both work, only one employers provide health insurance.
Their employer decides that the company can no longer afford FAMILY COVERAGE and can only provide for the employee, leaving the family out.
The female will need to take time off for the birth and afterwards.
Now they are faced with having to purchase health insurance for the mother and the children. This will cost them in addition to the insurance they already carry an additional $800/month and because she is already pregnant - the pregnancy will not be covered.
Where are they to come up $ for PRENATL doctors visits, ultrasounds, bloodwork, and a delivery. Where are they to get the money to cover the new childs expenses (AND GOD FORBID THE CHILD OR THE MOTHER HAVE COMPLICATIONS)
What if that child has a congenital birth issue such as a heart disorder. Or has an early childhood illness like juvenile diabetes and is uninsurable.
It appears that the GOP and the TEABAGGERS would be saying to this family _ SCREW YOU - your young child can die and so can you because even though you and your husband work hard to provide for your family -- you do not DESERVE to have a life.
Can you see where in this type of situation, more and more women would be looking to have abortions SOLELY BECAUSE SOCIETY HAS TOLD THEM THAT THEY AND THEIR CHILDREN ARE UNWORTHY OF AFFORDABLE HEALTHCARE.
Such is the PRO-LIFE ATTITUDE. The middle class can DIE as far as the PRO_LIFE and GOPers are concerned.
God would love their attitude of greed and selfishness. Sentencing the most vulnerable of use (the sick) to death solely for monetary reasons.
Can you see children dying of the flu or chickenpox, measles or simply treated diabetes solely because of AMERICAN GREED AND SELFHISHNESS.
And you all rant about human rights abuses in other countries.

Posted by: knjincvc | March 19, 2010 4:49 PM | Report abuse

This is too vital an issue for our nation--both as a moral question and as a matter of public policy--to be defeated thanks to the fear-mongering that the Republican and insurance-industry racket have unleashed.

so important a moral question that dont even come close to covering everybody?

so important a matter of public policy that passing a bill, any bill is required even though it takes away all the tools we would have to MEANINGFULLY reduce the deficit. they use enron style accounting to claim a technical $100 billion reduciton in the deficit over 10 years while obama's budget adding 10 trillion dollars over the same time frame. it makes no sense, wake up your party has taken the american people for a ride!

Posted by: dummypants | March 19, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

shmoozer: he is probably more interested in indy's who hate this bill almost as much as republicans.

Posted by: dummypants | March 19, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

as always its dems vs. dems in this intra party blood bath between libs and centrists which is denying the country a fiscally manageable, consensus health care reform.

obama blew this bigger than the media blew him during the campaign.

Posted by: dummypants | March 19, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

I live in Albemarle County and not only voted for Perriello in 2008, but also worked for him and contributed to his campaign. He is a smart, dedicated, extremely hard working, and thoroughly honest and principed member of Congress.

I will proudly vote, work, and contribute to him in 2010--but only if he votes FOR health care reform. This is too vital an issue for our nation--both as a moral question and as a matter of public policy--to be defeated thanks to the fear-mongering that the Republican and insurance-industry racket have unleashed.

I understand the fears and worries of many good people in this district. And no, the health care reform bill, even as amended by the reconciliation fixes, is not perfect. But doing nothing would be fatal. And the defects can--and will--be fixed, as was done with Social Security and Medicare.

At present, I have no personal interest in the issue, for my wife and I have recently retired and gone on Medicare. But as self-employed people, we sure had to pay out a fortune in private health insurance during my working years--especially because my wife is a cancer survivor. I wouldn't wish those burdens and those anxieties on anyone else. Nor do I want our children to have to live under that sword of Damocles.

It's time we get health care reform enacted in this country. People who are still conflicted or angry at the prospect--relax, it'll be fine.

Congressman Perriello has my thanks and admiration--as long as he has the courage to do the right thing.

Posted by: jasm917 | March 19, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

If he wants a "promise". it needs to be in writing and signed in blood. Reid will lie to him just as quickly as he has ;ied to everyone else.

Posted by: gmclain | March 19, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Cowardly. What's the conservative option? What's the status quo? Quit being a coward and vote for the bill.

Posted by: ATLGuy | March 19, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Perriello wants a "promise" from the Senate in order to vote yes? Gosh, I wonder if the Dem-controlled senate will give him his wish. The answer, of course, is yes, because they'll do or say anything to pass this giant lie of a health care bill.
I also live in the 5th. A yes vote for Tommy is a no vote for me come November.

Posted by: fishguts | March 19, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

Perriello wants a "promise" from the Senate in order to vote yes? Gosh, I wonder if the Dem-controlled senate will give him his wish. The answer, of course, is yes, because they'll do or say anything to pass this giant lie of a health care bill.
I also live in the 5th. A yes vote for Tommy is a no vote for me come November.

Posted by: fishguts | March 19, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

How would you like to be a congressman and to have people demonizing you whatever you do. Does anyone think that's a good way to get highly qualified people to run for public office? Would anybody in their right mind (let alone anyone highly qualified) want to be a congressman these days? Whatever happened to the idea that we look to these folks to make reasoned decisions on issues and judge them on their whole record, not on one particular vote?

Posted by: tomsawyer2 | March 19, 2010 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Fluvanna resident here too who voted for Perriello. I also support the present plans for health insurance reform. My significant other has been w/o health insurance for 14 months since he was laid off from his regular job in January 09. Since then his old employer has taken him back at 10-20 hours/week (no benefits). Count my household as part of the 15% of residents of VA-05 without any health insurance whatsoever.

Posted by: palmyra | March 19, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Only Big pharma, Big insurance or lunatics (aka Republicans) can be against Universal Nationalized Single Payer health care and for the current for profit health care system in USA.

Lets face one of the most proven facts, that is Universal Nationalized Health Care is the only way to operate the heath care of a country in todays modern World. And that is why all European countries, Canada, Japan, Australia, Israel, in fact all developed nations and many developing nations too operate health care on one form or another of Universal Nationalized basis. This last statement alone should prove beyond any shadow of doubt as to what lunatics, really what enemy of American people, Republicans are to be against Universal Nationalized Health Care, given that all developed nations in the World have Universal Nationalized Health Care, given that the Conservative parties in UK, Germany, Canada, Israel, etc. all our 100% for their Universal Nationalized Health Care.

And Democrats are not proposing Universal Nationalized Health Care and Republicans are such total lying lunatics to call Universal Nationalized Health Care to be "Socialism", which is really insane talk since operating health care on Universal Nationalized basis is the SAME WAY that we (USA) operate the Navy, Army, Air force, Police, Fire, Courts of Law, etc. etc.

Much more here:

Posted by: RealNews1 | March 19, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

I am a conservative 5th district resident. Tom Perriello is a very capable Representative.

Unfortunately he is stuck with a Radical Federalist President who is leading America down the wrong road. What a shame that a capable leader is having to tow the line for this Radical President.

If Perriello votes for health care reform, I will vote against him in November 2010.

Posted by: hz9604 | March 19, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

I live in Floyd and I voted for him as well. If he votes for this monstrosity, he'll not get my vote, my family's vote or most of my friends. It ain't just the tea party folks fella. If he supports this bill, a dead rat can be put on the ballot against him and win. He's burning bridges in this district and he may be toast.

Posted by: Natstoyou | March 19, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

I live in VA's 5th district and campaigned for Perriello in 2008, but I will not support him in his reelection bid if he does not vote for HCR this time around. The tea-baggers won't vote for him in any case so there's really no point in considering their views here.

Posted by: shmoozer | March 19, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

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