Bloggers’ reactions to Sunday’s historic health care bill vote ranged from reflective to outraged.
FiveThirtyEight.com’s Nate Silver tries to break down the polling stats to figure how why lawmakers voted the way they did, including plenty of graphs: “Basically, each Democrat’s vote [was] determined by two things: a member’s confidence that [President Barack] Obama could be an asset to them (he tended to get the benefit of the doubt on this — but only up to an extent) and frankly their conscience — as it regards both health care overall and the side issue of abortion.”
The National Journal’s Marilyn Werber Serafini asks her experts if the vote was the first step or a “done deal”? Responders include Newt Gingrich, John Goodman, John Sheils, Rep. Pete Stark and Grace-Marie Turner.
The Washington Post’s Ezra Klein announces he’s dedicating the blog to explaining the content of the health bill. He also derides political posturing during yesterday’s vote, saying, “It was a reminder of how far our politics have strayed, and how much more extreme our rhetoric has become, than the underlying legislation warrants. The deafening volume of the debate long ago drowned out its subject. Sadly, the Senate bill remains a careful contradiction that most people still don’t understand. It is a comprehensive reform with an incremental soul, but neither side has done enough to explain it that way.”
Critical Condition’s Jeffrey Anderson: “But far from striking a fatal blow to the cause of limited government and fiscal responsibility, Obama has awakened a sleeping giant. …So, the war has just begun, and we must be prepared to dig in for the long haul. Repeal will be a three-year process — more like a marathon than a sprint. If those of us who oppose Obamacare show as much determination to repeal it as Obama has shown in imposing it, we will prevail. Until victory is achieved, let us be committed to this five-word goal: Repeal, and then real reform.”
Brad Wright of Wright on Health: “Today I just want to say one simple thing: Sometimes politicians set aside personal interests to do what is right for the country. When they do so, they ought to be applauded for it.”
Newt Gingrich: “The Obama-Pelosi-Reid machine combined the radicalism of Alinsky, the corruption of Springfield and the machine power politics of Chicago. Sunday was a pressured, bought, intimidated vote worthy of Hugo Chavez but unworthy of the United States of America.”
Health Beat Blog’s Maggie Mahar: “I am sorry to see the nation divided, but in this case, I believe that such sharp differences provided clarity. The moral choice was clear—as clear as it was when Congress enacted civil rights legislation. To his great credit, despite an extraordinarily hostile environment, President Barack Obama persevered, and in the end he stood up. Last night, he quoted Lincoln: ‘I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true.’ Often, being true to yourself , and to principle, is the only way to win.”
Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey asks if the bill can be repealed: “I agree that this bill has to be repealed, but let’s not underestimate the difficulties that presents. It will be just as ugly as any real entitlement reform will be, with plenty of opportunity for opponents to demagogue Republicans as heartless meanies that want to strip the poor of their health care.”
Mark Trahant: “The three most important things to know about what health care reform means to Indian Country are simple ideas. First, the United States, officially and permanently, recognizes its trust and treaty obligation for health care delivery to American Indians and Alaska Natives. Second, there will be more money (not enough, but more) pumped into the Indian health system. And, third, President Barack Obama has delivered on a major, long-sought promise to Indian Country.”
The Health Care Blog’s Matthew Holt: “So it’s almost time to turn our attention away from payment reform, to delivery reform. Now every time in the past that we’ve had reform or something approaching it, those organizations who have shaped themselves to operate in an environment that rewards cost-effective innovation have ended up losing their financial shirts. … So the big question for the health care system going forward is, if providers start making the changes that will promote more cost-effective care, will they be rewarded or will they be hung out to dry?”
Heritage Foundation President Edward Feulner recorded a video statement protesting the bill’s passage, saying, “What has happened is intolerable”:
Grace-Marie Turner: “And the people’s voice will be heard the next time they have a chance to speak, at the polls in November. But today is a sad day for our great country. Neither equality nor liberty has been served. As Republican leader John Boehner told his fellow congressmen, by passing this bill, ‘we break our trust with Americans.’”
And The New America Foundation’s Joanne Kenen: “Now what? After 15 months of focus on process and procedures, on incremental steps toward a monumental goal, how will passage of health reform play a few days and weeks from now?”