December 17th, 2009
03:00 PM ET
9 months ago

Nelson: Health care bill 'isn't sufficient'

Sen. Nelson said he will not vote for the health care bill in its current form.
Sen. Nelson said he will not vote for the health care bill in its current form.

Washington (CNN) – Democratic Sen. Ben Nelson told a Nebraska radio station Thursday that he will not vote for the Senate health care bill as it stands because of concerns over insurance coverage for abortions and other unresolved issues.

Nelson, who could be the crucial 60th vote the Democrats need to overcome a Republican filibuster, said the bill "as it is now, without further modifications, it isn't sufficient" and that he will not vote for it.

"If it is not at the point that I think it needs to be with the improvements that I'm pushing, and they've made a lot of them, then I will not vote on cloture on the motion to end debate," Nelson told KLIN on Thursday.

Nelson received a compromise proposal on abortion language Wednesday from another anti-abortion Democrat, Sen. Bob Casey. The Nebraska senator said there the proposal represented "lot of improvement on the legislation, (but) the basic question on the funding of abortion has not been fully answered yet."

When asked if the bill would get through the Senate by Christmas, the senator - who also said he had continuing tax and cost questions about the bill - asked if the radio host was "talking about this Christmas or next" and said he was "more concerned about getting it right."


Filed under: Ben Nelson • Health care
soundoff (70 Responses)
  1. shmeckel

    Any chance we could find some professional ideas next time instead of chasing the first ideas that fall out of a Politian’s mouth.

    December 17, 2009 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  2. David

    I thought this was a health care reform bill, not an abortion bill. If they want to change the current abortion laws do it in another bill. It is striking to me that the teabagger types who want their freedom and the liberty and "their country back" are the ones who are trying to control freedom of choice on abortion, eliminate immigration, mandate Christian values etc etc.

    December 17, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  3. David

    Nelson probably wants hairpieces in the healthcare reform bill.

    December 17, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  4. George Bush - Worst President Ever

    I'm pretty sure that Senators are supposed to hold America hostage over their own religous beliefs.

    December 17, 2009 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  5. John D.

    Thank you Senator Nelson for stating the obvious. You are an honest individual that understands this bill is and never was worth the paper it was written on.

    December 17, 2009 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  6. Ready for 2012

    One of many reasons I'm against the health care form bill is because it doesn't cover abortions, a procedure to which all women are entitled to and should not have to buy a separate policy just to cover abortions. This bill is discriminatory towards all women and I'm hoping enough politicans vote NO to prevent the passage of the bill.

    Come on republicans stick together and just say NO!!! Surely you can coerce enugh of your democratic collegues to stand by you and say NO. also.

    December 17, 2009 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  7. Allison

    This is the same BoZo who doesn't think mammograms before the age of 50 are necessary......in other words, he's siding with insurance companies!! He knows where his brea is buttered!!

    December 17, 2009 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    "Like most other boards, this just further demonstrates the libs complete intolerance of views other than their own."

    Backwards. Nelson's position is a position of complete and utter intolerance of views other than his own. If he's not lying and hiding behind abortion because big insurance has his wang in a vice, then what he's really saying is "my viewpoint on abortion, which by the way goes against the law of the land and the Constitutionality of abortion per Roe v. Wade and the "penumbra of rights" known as "privacy" first recognized by Justice Blackmun, should trump the majority viewpoint and the law. Unless everyone has to live by my narrowminded dogmattically religious way of thinking, then I will not allow a bill to be passed that helps millions of Americans obtain health insurance."

    December 17, 2009 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  9. ran

    Nelson is jealous that Lieberman got what he wanted so he is trying the same strategy. They both should be ignored and Mr. Reid should just do reconciliation and give us universal single payer now. Then watch all the obstructionist go crazy because they would lose it all by Reid giving us Universal coverage.

    Enough of the insanity and the babies. Reid do the reconciliation now and give us single payer non-profit universal and be done with the cry babies.

    December 17, 2009 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  10. Christian Values

    Tina December 17th, 2009 5:09 pm ET

    Supporting the abortion bill – is an implicit act of supporting killing babies – thus killing people – where is justice America? Is is fine to kill helpless innocent baby and to kill anyone alive on this earth? Equality is word KILL. I will not allow nor contribute my hard earned money to the killings of innocent lives – I cannot sleep and know that I kill somebody indirectly by condoning this act.
    -------------------------–
    Absolutely not it ain't. That's why abortions don't kill babies. It kills fetus's, which aren't babies, and thus aren't humans. Only a retard thinks a FETUS is a BABY. ooops, sorry, I think I just called you a retard. Ok, I'm not sorry, if you think a fetus is a baby, then you really are a moron (and a retard). Hopefully, you don't breed.

    December 17, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  11. Rose

    Good for Nelson, he is listening to the people of his state which is more than I can say about some of the Dems who don't care what the majority of people want. This bill stinks to high heaven.

    December 17, 2009 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  12. Ben in Texas

    One thing that's being missed here is that Lieberman and Nelson have joined the Repugnant filibuster. The vote we're trying to get to is on cloture, meaning that they're voting to see if they can have a final vote. Lieberman and Nelson, if they are Democrats or caucusing with the Democrats, should support cloture out of party loyalty. If they personally oppose the bill, they should vote against it on final passage, when it only requires 51 votes to pass. That is when they should express their views and represent their constituents, as they see fit.

    Therefore, Lieberman and Nelson are acting as Repugnants and should be stripped of Democratic Party privileges for stating that they will not vote for cloture.

    December 17, 2009 05:29 pm at 5:29 pm |
  13. michael

    Ben Nelson is willing to let 45,000 Americans die each year so he can control women. Listen Ben, work those issues out in therapy not the legislative process.

    December 17, 2009 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  14. bobbymcgee

    Thanks alot Ben, for thinking about your OWN HIDE AND JOB, while right this very minute, and today, their were many, many American citizens who died because they either had NO healthcare insurance, HAD no money to buy any, were TURNED DOWN because of pre-existing conditions, AND/OR were low income minority and/or disabled people who could not find someone to treat them because they had NO MONEY, and NO WAY OUT OF DEATH!!

    Have a great holiday, Ben!!! And be sure to contact all of your "supporters" while you are on break and give them a wink and a nod with a little card that says 'VOTE FOR ME NEXT TIME, O.K.????!!!"

    December 17, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  15. billy123

    This is horrible I can you cut a deal with a Senator who after meeting with other Senators has to send it back to his state to get the Right to Life approval in his state. The Right to Life will never agree to anything and I say scrap this dam Senate bill now and quot wasting everybody time on something that will never get passed.

    December 17, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  16. billy123

    This is horrible how can you cut a deal with a Senator who after meeting with other Senators has to send it back to his state to get the Right to Life approval in his state. The Right to Life will never agree to anything and I say scrap this dam Senate bill now and quot wasting everybody time on something that will never get passed.

    December 17, 2009 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  17. OldUncleTom

    Interesting that we have 2 Senators from "Insurance States" that each have recurring resistance to Reform.

    Personally, I don't like the insurance (private) option; its ghoulish to reap profit from human misery. Unfortunately, this ghastly plan is destined to be the core of our system for some time to come.

    December 17, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  18. Ignorant Liberal

    HA HA HA!!!!!!

    You pathetic liberals are just gonna have to wait to get your lazy hands into my pocket!!!!

    Looks like your Messiah Obama isn't gonna fill your gas tank or pay your mortgage for you. Boo hoo :'-(

    HAHAHAHAHAHA

    December 17, 2009 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  19. ender

    This is what happens when you allow a bill to be thrown back and forth through congress and the senate for almost a year becasue certain people cry about it going "too fast".

    It get's ripped to shreds by every malcontent with a nit to pick and turned into a near meaningless stack of paper.

    Nelson and the others need to get with the program and pass this bill. The longer it takes the bigger incompetence they will collectively seem.

    Get with the program Nelson.

    December 17, 2009 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  20. Voted4HealthCare

    This is NOT an abortion bill. Enough of the nonsense.

    Pass REAL health care reform with a majority-supported public option OR remove the mandates. This should NOT be a giveaway to the greedy insurance lobby!

    Americans need real health reform. Pass only the good portions through reconciliation if necessary.

    December 17, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
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