Vote on health care bill set for Sunday

The health care bill vote will likely take place Sunday. From Wikimedia Commons

The fight over the health care bill in the House of Representatives continues, and the bill is set for a vote on Sunday. The current bill was sent to the House by the Senate, and the House will require 216 votes in order to pass it, and that is what House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D – CA) is gunning for. Ohio Rep. John Boccieri (D) has crossed the aisle and pledged to vote for the bill. House and Senate Republicans are bound and determined to keep the bill from passing either house, despite CBO estimates that the bill will save a lot of payday cash for consumers and the government alike.

John Boccieri says ‘Yes’ to health care bill

A freshman legislator, Rep. John Boccieri (D-OH) has, according to the Washington Post, decided to support the legislation and vote in favor of the health care bill in order to pass it through the House and send it back to the Senate.  If the bill clears the Senate without further alteration, it will be sent to the president.

Falling into line

Several other House Democrats who had previously held the bill in dubious esteem, including Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), Betsy Markely (D-CO), and Bart Gordon (D-TN) have recently also committed to voting for the bill. The bill has likely appeared more palatable because of recent Congressional Budget Office estimates that the bill, with a price tag of more than $940 billion – that’s a heck of a cash advance – will trim up to $138 billion from the deficit over the next 10 years.

Possibly not the end of the line

The success of the bill on Sunday depends entirely on getting enough votes to pass the House, and the House revised bill passing the Senate, and of course, for the President to sign it.  President Obama is deeply committed to health care reform, as health care costs are the cause of more than 60 percent of all bankruptcy filings. Medical debt has the potential to become a far greater problem in the next 30 years, as the baby boomers begin to retire.

President Obama urges action

In a recent speech, President Obama urged Congress to pass the bill as soon as possible.  The specter of health care reform is looming large over Washington, as many want something to be done and just as many oppose intrusion by government into a business as important as the health care industry.  It has become a cornerstone issue of the Obama presidency, and regardless of the outcome, it will likely be one of, if the not the, defining issue for his administration.

Other recent posts by bryanh