October 15th, 2009
05:18 PM ET
5 years ago

Democrats chastise Snowe over health care 'influence'

 Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus and Maine Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe on Tuesday.
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus and Maine Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe on Tuesday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - There is candid frustration Thursday coming from rank and file congressional Democrats about the influence of Maine's Republican senator in the health care reform debate.

The way Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe sees it, she's just using the power any senator has: the power of one.

"The brilliance of our Founding Fathers was this: that they gave power equally to every member of the United States Senate, whether you represented a large state or a small state, and exercising that authority in a positive way," she said.

But the challenge now for Democrats is that Snowe opposes what most of them support: a government-sponsored health care option.

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Filed under: Congress • Democrats • Health care • Olympia Snowe
soundoff (42 Responses)
  1. Reformed Republican

    Hey dems – get a spine already...

    PASS HEALTH CARE REFORM WITH A STRONG PUBLIC OPTION AND ANTI-TRUST LAWS!

    Steam roll the whole lot of obstructionist rethugs and do what's right for ALL Americans.

    Do it now and stop letting 122 of our fellow citizens – and humans – die every day for lack of health care insurance. It's called a MORAL IMPERATIVE!

    October 15, 2009 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  2. Deb n Texas

    Well, if she doesn't want a PUBLIC OPTION – let her keep her vote and SAY NO like the rest of her colleagues.

    October 15, 2009 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  3. Moderate Democrat

    I don't go with what Snowe wants. But she is the only 'decent' republican there is. We need to pass this bill with OUT her though. Ultimately she will not go with a public option.

    The best way to call her bluff is to institute the public option via the 'trigger' that she suggested. If she doesn't accept it, we will know that she was lying the whole time. I do give her credit for the 'trigger' though. It's should be adopted by us democrats as one of our MANY bipartisan efforts on this health care.

    There have been HUNDREDS of suggestions written into the bill that were given by republicans, as such we have been as bipartisan as it gets. The only moronic retards yelling that we aren't bipartisan are the neoturds that don't want any reform at all to begin with. We can't reason with these idiots, so ignore them and move on.

    October 15, 2009 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  4. Joe in Ohio

    So as an independent, it sounds like the Democrats do not want a bipartisan bill?

    October 15, 2009 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  5. Jenn, Philadelphia

    Whiny Democrats. She votes with you and you still find fault with her. Again, you have the majority in the Senate and the House and you have the White House. Pass your bill and take sole responsibility for it. No, instead you want to be able to blame the Republicans for its failure. You're a joke.

    October 15, 2009 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  6. johnnie w

    Senator Snowe, has a 70% approval rating in Maine,she has no WORRIES you GOP IDIOTS

    October 15, 2009 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  7. Bill Sampson

    Just give us your "public option" health care insurance at the price you pay, Ms. Snow, and we will all be happy.

    "Heath" insurance companies = "Death Panels".

    October 15, 2009 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  8. AJ

    Snowe is a disgusting deceptive, manipulative human being who will do anything to aid the insurace industry.

    October 15, 2009 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  9. Ex-NC-Pub

    Wake up Democrats; you are starting to smell like Rush-Beck-Dobbs-Publicans.... And we proved by our votes that smell has been offensive for eight years AND STILL IS!

    October 15, 2009 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  10. Keith in Austin

    And the majority of the American People oppose a Public Option also! 2010 and 2012 cannot come soon enough so the Democrat Socialist Party is voted OUT!

    October 15, 2009 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  11. Marie Laveaux

    Look, I think both sides should back off of Ms. Snowe. I'd rather have one non-partisan Republican on board than none, and at least she's doing more than the "Blue Dog" Democrats. I might be wrong, but I don't think she deserves such animosity from either side. She's carefully evaluating the thing, not just automatically saying no, and her role is important because she just may bring other Republicans with her.

    October 15, 2009 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  12. J.C. - Independent & Insured

    Private health insurers cannot have it both ways.

    Protected by an anti-trust exempt – the 1945 McCarran-Ferguson Act, the US private health insurance industry also enjoys a free market, in which people are treated like cars for insurance purpose. This is in Ms. Karen Ignagni's own words. She is the chief lobbyist and president of American Health Insurance Plans (AHIP).

    We should retire the McCarran-Ferguson Act after too many decades of abuse and greed by this industry. Even utilities are under more regulations than health care. We can live without electricity, but we cannot live without medicine when we get sick.

    October 15, 2009 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  13. garys usually right

    We need malpractice reform!
    No public option! No new taxes! No government panels!
    No reconcilation process that bypasses the Senate Filabuster!
    Let insurance companies cross state lines!
    But don't let insurance companies exclude pre-existing conditions!
    But most of all no taxes, public option or panels!

    October 15, 2009 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  14. Oy Vey

    We want the Republican's help ... but get mad at them when they give it?

    Is the playground too small for all you professed bipartisan ?

    October 15, 2009 09:41 pm at 9:41 pm |
  15. m smith

    Health care now with a public option. Have her read the numbers.

    October 15, 2009 09:57 pm at 9:57 pm |
  16. mark in Atlanta

    Snowe is not the problem. She is doing what she believes correct, and she is actuually participating in the process (unlike the rest of the Republican Senators who seem to think their only jobs are pouting and trying to hurt Obama). I feel we really need a public option, but Olympia is operating in good faith, The problem here are the insurance company suck-up gutless blue dog Dems who have made Snowe's vote so important.

    October 15, 2009 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  17. james

    hmmm, this partisan ridiculousness is getting out of hand. you have dozen's of dems voting against the public options and supports triggers but the one gop senator is being chatised for it?

    October 15, 2009 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
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