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House Committee Signs Off on Health-Care Bill

Updated 9:45 p.m.
By Paul Kane
The House Energy and Commerce Committee approved a sweeping package of health-care measures Friday night, clearing a critical hurdle that sets a five-week battle for both Democrats and Republicans to define the legislation in voters' minds before the full House votes next month.

On a 31 to 28 vote, the committee late Friday evening approved its portion of the House's 1,000-page health-care bill. Five Democrats joined all 23 Republicans on the committee in opposing the measure.

The final pieces of an intense two-week negotiation came together Friday morning, when rank-and-file liberals on the committee struck a deal with conservative Democrats that could lead to larger subsidies for lower-income workers to pay for health insurance.

Democrats who voted no to the legislation were Reps. John Barrow of Georgia; Rick Boucher of Virginia; Jim Matheson of Utah; Charlie Melancon of Louisiana and Bart Stupak of Michigan.

By Paul Kane  |  July 31, 2009; 9:10 PM ET
Categories:  Health Reform  
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If we truly care about giving everyone access to health care we must be willing to pay for it. We should do it through the tax base and exclude no one. This means AARP and Seniors as well as the working people. AARP is in favor of universal care but wants to exempt Seniors. Everyone who files a 1040 should pay based on their AGI and exempt only poverty level citizens. Exempting anyone is selfish as well as charging just a few.

Posted by: bocatty | August 2, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Good for the (23)Republicans and the (5)Five Democrats that "voted against" this Healthcare Reform Bill. This Healthcare Bill will not "improve", but "destroy" healthcare. The American taxpayer is already burdened and this will make them a slave to the government. This Bill is not For the People, By the People and of the People, it is Taxation without Representation. This "monster" of a Bill has the foot-print of the Marxist stamped all over it... Is it Constitutional to be "marked" by the beast?

Posted by: Logic3 | August 3, 2009 12:58 AM | Report abuse

I am curious Logic3. How is this bill, if passed, "Taxation without Representation"? We are, after all, speaking about the activities of the U.S. Congress, whose members were elected to represent us.

Just because you don't happen to like what they are (possibly) going to do in this instance does not change that reality.

Furthermore, what has "Marxist" and the "beast" got to do with it?

Posted by: LeslieHittner | August 3, 2009 4:03 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: Logic3

"This "monster" of a Bill has the foot-print of the Marxist stamped all over it... Is it Constitutional to be "marked" by the beast?"

The only monsters or beasts are the insurance corporations who are sucking the blood out of us Americans. A public option will get costs in control and put these monsters on a leash where they belong.

Posted by: seemstome | August 3, 2009 6:30 AM | Report abuse

First off..Prez. Obama said that America is going to change their Healthcare Access, "no matter what". Sounds like a "demand" from the "Bully Pulpit".
Nancy Pelosi has been a house member for years and so has John(Jay)D Rockefeller IV and had that opportunity many years ago. Why here? Why Now? When America is broke?
This is dejavu, because all that the House Members (Nancy Pelosi) did was take the Healthcare Reform Package off of the shelf; dusted it off, from the Clinton era, which was "hatched" in locked back rooms at that time. No doubt,The House, Nancy Pelosi, took hers and their cue to start their "propaganda campaign". The House could't even define the "specifics" nor the "cost" to the American people and voted anyway. That is "Unconstitutional".
They "fabricated" what the total cost would
be to the American Citizen Taxpayer. That is called a "Lie". "Unconstitutional"
According to polls, 85% of the people are very satisfied with their Insurance Company. Admittedly, they would like their premiums reduced and drugs at a better cost. However, the American taxpayers want their current or a choice of insurance plans.
That leaves 15%, of Americans, that "may" want and "need" insurance. However, that is not clear, Congress does not know who wants insurance and who does not..
To "force" all of the Americans,currently covered by insurance, or an indivdual into a "pool of murky coverage, is "Unconstitutional".
To be "so envious" and planning, by Congress, to "only tax certain Americans" for this "monstrous" piece of work...Is "Unconstitutional".
The planning, Implementation and "costs" are the footprints of a "Monster" and everybody will have been forced to be "marked" by this beast.
To have everybody's "Healthcare Records" at the "finger-tips" of the government, so that the government..(whoever they are at the moment)..will dictate, whether you can have a baby or be sterilized. Whether you can "live" or "die". The government might even need someone's body part, just like now; when the government needs someone's "property", no problem.. the government takes it. The Democrats will own this, "Monsterous, Healthcare Reform Package," which is stamped with the footprint of the ""beast" that is Marxist. Obviously, "Unconstitutional".

Posted by: Logic3 | August 3, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Throughout this whole mis-handled so called debate over health care reform why is it that we have heard virtually nothing about reforming existing state and federal laws and regulations that in fact are anti-competitive and have helped mightily to cause much of the price pressures we all feel.

Where's the real debate about tort reform of a system that add hundreds of millions to our health care costs while doing almost nothing for those truly injured by the system. A system that has by the way, created dozens of John Edwards' and little improvement in actual cost control and improved outcomes.

Whare's the real debate about insurance portability so that your policy follows you for life regardless of which state you live in or what company you work for? Why don't we push for a system of mandatory health care insurance starting at birth and covering us as long as we live. After all, life insurance can be bought at some very low prices when bought at a young enough age. Is there nothing that can be adapted from those hard won lessons?

Where's that debate over nationwide competition between insurance carriers instead of the hodgepodge of anti-competitive state mandated or state excluded carriers.

This is just another in an almost unending line of Washington legislation that gets piled upon the crappy foundation of their former legislation. Why not fix what we know is wrong and see where that gets us before trying to re-write in one massive bill the mechanics of 1/6th of our economy based on ridiculous assumptions of promised savings and promised coverage?

Posted by: Sproing | August 3, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

To me it seems that the Republicans are grasping at straws. Anything they can think of, they are using because of their defeat. Maybe it would be a good idea if they would get back on Bush back and he will give him more of his support. For what it is worth.

Posted by: jmac1918 | August 3, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Obviously, this "Marxist Beast" of a Healthcare Reform Package was "conjured-up" by the Democrats. The Democrats in Congress foot-prints are stamped all over this "unfeasable" healthcare mandate.

Posted by: Logic3 | August 3, 2009 12:22 PM | Report abuse

It would be reasonable for the American taxpayer to ask Congress to "fix" the Healthcare System. However, Congress didn't seem to know what the 1500 paper insurance form looked like until 1994. Not until, Hillary and Rockefeller showed the "1500paper billing form" to Congress. They were all awe struck!!!. They all thought Hillary was so "brillient" and a "wonder woman". Hillary and Rockefeller said that they had solved the problem and streamlined the "billing process" for the doctor to bill the insurance company, while showing this 1500 paper form to Congress... Problem, the doctors and insurance companies had already used the 1500 paper form for billing for many many years and it was even on the threshold of being obselete. Electronic claims had already advanced to the point of sending government and private claims via computer to computer. Anybody, that knew, anything about billing medical claims, no doubt, were insulted by this claim and sham.
The Healthcare Industry is very sophisticated, complexed and requires a tremendous amount of attention, talent and analyitical skills.
Currently, this Congress, passing "Bills" willy-nilly, without reading and comprehending what they read or on what they vote, this clearly demonstrates, that they are "addicted" to "spending and wasting taxpayer's money" that is not theirs to spend. Again and Again, it has been demonstrated, this Congress does not have the capacity, nor the understanding, to "fix" or "change" America's Healthcare System.
It is above Congress's "pay-grade" and the Administration should recalibrate their thinking on the Healthcare Reform Package.

Posted by: Logic3 | August 3, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse

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