I’m very happy to report that yesterday the House of Representatives passed The Affordable Health Care for America Act (a.k.a. H.R. 3962 : read full 2,000 pages of bill here… I don’t recommend that) with a very tight vote of 220-215, which included a single Republican vote. Raise your glass to bipartisanship! I’m not happy to report that this isn’t the end and there is still a long way to go before this turns into a law (see: School of Rock – I’m Just a Bill).
What exactly does this mean for health care reform in the U.S. then?
The Senate now has to vote on their health care legislation, which is unique from the legislation that the House passed. If their bill passes the Senate, then the House and the Senate have to come together and combine their two pieces of legislation into one piece of mega-legislation, which as you can imagine, will be time consuming… and I’m betting really, really boring.
Even though it is still a ways off, House Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio had some pissy words to say about the bill passing the House.
“Well, it was about what I thought it would be. I came here to renew the American Dream, so my kids and their kids have the same opportunities I had. I came here to fight big-government monstrosities like this bill that dim the light of freedom and diminish opportunity for future generations.”
Like the opportunity of being healthy without being ass-raped by corrupt health insurance companies? Apparently not, as long as he isn’t one of the millions of Americans being ass-raped. Thankfully, there is one Republican in the House that isn’t completely delusional, that being Joseph Cao who represents the district that New Orleans, Lousiana is in.
“I had to make a decision of conscience based on the needs of the people in my district,” Cao said of being the only Republican to vote alongside the Democrats. “I had to make a decision and I felt that last night’s decision was the right decision for my district. Even though it was not the popular decision for my party.”
Some Republicans, unsure of how to deal with such defiance, said he was just kissing President Obama’s ass in exchange for perks for his struggling district, but Cao quickly refuted those claims.
“The president and I, we have had a very good relationship, and I thank him and his administration for their hard work in helping me to rebuild my district after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. I’m pretty sure that if I were to vote no against the bill the president would still continue to work with me to address the needs of my district. But I felt it was important of me to support the president in this matter because, like I said before, based on my own conscience, it was the right decision for my district.”
Thank God that not all Republican politicians are mindless, bigoted drones. We still have months until we see some real action take place, but this is exciting and promising news and gives me hope that we will see this reform sooner rather than later.