July 15th, 2009
10:45 AM ET
11 years ago

First Congressional committee passes health care

WASHINGTON (CNN) - One committee down, four to go.

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee Wednesday morning passed a bill the revamp health care, becoming the first congressional committee to act on President Barack Obama's push to overhaul the nation's health care system.

The HELP committee voted 13 to 10, along party lines, to pass a $600 billion piece of legislation. Committee chairman Sen. Ted Kennedy, a long time proponent of health care reform, was not present for the vote. The Democrat from Massachusetts has been absent from Capitol Hill as he battles brain cancer, but his vote in favor counted by proxy.

- CNN's Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

Filed under: Health care
soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. PFFT

    How are they going to pay for it?

    July 15, 2009 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  2. Jefe

    Put a big piece of the burden on the pharmeceuticals and the healthcare corporations, both of whom are incredibly profitable, and both of whom almost entirely depend on health insurance to keep their dollars flowing.

    July 15, 2009 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  3. Harley

    It was one sided !!!! the Dem's passed it with allot not even have read it ALL !! At the tax payers expense just because the socialist Obama wants it !!!!

    July 15, 2009 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
  4. James M. Holmes

    This bill is exactly what is needed! Democrats must pass this!

    You want to know how good this reform would be for average Americans? All you need to see is that the Republicans are AGAINST it!

    Enough said...

    July 15, 2009 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  5. Proud Member..Party of No

    U.S. Representatives John Carter (R-TX) and Steve King (R-IA)
    had announced they would discuss Democrat Majority Leader Steny Hoyer’s (D-MD) statement that the upcoming health care reform effort would fail if Members were required to read the legislation. House Democrats accordingly silenced floor debate on the issue by voting to close early.

    This is how democrats govern.

    July 15, 2009 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  6. Bert Furlong

    Health care crisis?? When did this start, the day Obama was elected?
    People live until they die, and we all die. People get sick and may/may not be healed. The problem of today is the COST of health care, not the availability. The way dems are going they will not bring down the cost of health care, only make it less available - dependent upon whether or not some committee deems a sick person to be eligible for care. As in elderly will be deprived of care in favor of caring for young. This is very bad for America.

    July 15, 2009 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  7. Am I missing something?

    Maybe I'm missing something. I am employed and pay for health benefits. Under this Government health care bill, will employees see an extra amount deducted from their paychecks to cover the cost? What analysis has been done to assess how much more goods and services are going to cost since companies will have to pitch in their "fair share" of the $1,000,000,000? Where can I go to get answers on the economic impact of the Government forcing everyone to be healthy?

    July 15, 2009 11:20 am at 11:20 am |
  8. Scott, Tucson

    The American people should demand that all politicians SHALL have the same health plan as the one they're trying to cram down our throats. If they believe it's good enough for us than it's certainly good enough for them.

    July 15, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  9. awaitingliberalizationbyCNN

    Everyone who votes for this shall be defeated in the 2010 election. What a pile of crap, punishing success in America, its the liberal way. They only want dope smoking, Oprah watchers living here.

    July 15, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  10. John Black Hills/SD

    Give Americans the same insurance plans used by DC representatives. Right wingers claim higher prices, but what they neglect to tell you is that the health care premium you have today won't be deducted, the deduction will then be in your tax deductions on your pay check. Republicans are liars, they also lie when they chose 2 of the countries(Canada & England) with poor health coverage, but they neglect to show Americans the successful and better health care provided through other nations, national health plans. Americans need to get off their lazy rears and research the facts yourself, don't rely on those creepy commercials that promote anxiety over the ignorant.

    July 15, 2009 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  11. Sam Sixpack

    Soon, working-poor mothers will get to throw their 18 year-old children out on the street (instead of sending them to community college) so they can afford to give their paychecks to fat, greedy, rich insurance execs. If they don't, the IRS will eat them for lunch.

    Will those same greedy execs still get to decide what is "medically necessary" for those working-poor mothers who are forced to send in their paychecks?

    This plan is EVIL!

    July 15, 2009 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  12. BigD_95

    France spends $3,449 per person, per year on healthcare.
    United Kingdom $2,760 per person, per year on healthcare
    Canada spend $3,678 per person, per year on healthcare

    United States $6,714 per person, per year on healthcare

    U.S. Ranks

    Life Expectancy: 50th
    Infant Mortality: 44th

    Americans Seeking Healthcare Illegally in Canada cost Canada Annually
    $691 million

    July 15, 2009 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  13. annie s

    Well done! Now let's hope that when a bill emerges, our Legislators will show backbone and stand for the American people instead of the financial contributions of the insurance and pharmaceutical lobbies.

    July 15, 2009 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  14. Mike

    If this health care plan is so great, require all elected officials in DC to drop their current coverage and go under this health care plan. I will bet everything that none who vote for this plan would change. They will exempt themselves by a law they will pass.

    July 15, 2009 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  15. annie s

    Harley, of course it was one sided! The Republicans fear ALL change, unless it somehow makes the rich richer. I'm sorry to say, but they are dinosaurs. They were against a woman's right to vote, against Social Security and against Medicare, against stem cell research, against protecting our environment. I've been voting since 1972, and the only thing I'm sure they're in favor is tax cuts to the rich – which hasn't done a darn thing to help any one of us average Americans.

    July 15, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  16. European-American

    People put your party politics aside for a moment. We are in debt up to our tail. Social security is bankrupt and our children and grandchildren will be paying for it forever unless China decides to call us on our debt, then we will need to learn Mandarin along with Spanish. Folks it is simple mathematics. It is not which party has the answer – neither has the answer.
    It would be like charging your cards to the limit, continuing to spend and get more loans to cover your frivolous spending. You may be doing all the good for people, but your still in debt and digging deeper and deeper. Who in their right mind would do that?
    Washington is bankrupting America and Washington doesn't care!
    Washington is bankrupting America and Americans don't seem to care, as long as they get there piece of the pie.
    Folks there are not enough RICH people in America to cover the mounting debt and interest these morons are piling up just to get re-elected. In the words of Bill Clinton- "It's the economy stupid."

    July 15, 2009 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  17. Fair is Fair

    @ BigD_95:

    Throw out all the stats you want.

    But be sure to include LIFESTYLE in those stats. Things like diet... you know? The old saying "you are what you eat"? How about smoking? I mean really... there are literally HUNDREDS of things! Your stats show only the bottom line, and not what the bottom line is comprised of.

    Someone once said "Only in America are even those in poverty obese".

    July 15, 2009 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  18. Fair is Fair

    So there's one very large question that's being conveniently avioded – Will unionized workers be forced into these programs as well?

    July 15, 2009 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  19. TCM

    @ annie s –

    Ms., you are clueless about what you speak of; you're a parrot for the liberal destruction that's taking place...and hopefully you'll see the light of day.

    July 15, 2009 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  20. TCM

    @MIKE –

    I concur....however, Good ol' Ted Kennedy stuck in a waiver at the last minute, exempting members of congress from Obamacare...I guess he didn't want his alcoholism revealed, huh? It's a massive screwing of America, and the libs are lubricating the threads of the screw that they're sending into themselves!

    July 15, 2009 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  21. TCM


    Well said!

    CNN – stop censoring me! You should post as many anti-Obama posts, as you do pro-Obama....***

    *** -see Fox News for definition of Fair and Balanced...

    July 15, 2009 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  22. TCM

    @Bert Furlong –

    Yeah, everything's a crisis...you see, Obama's cronies, and himself, have discovered an inherit weakness in liberals; lack of self confidence. Therefore, if everything's a crisis...they invoke fear in the liberal masses, resulting in the masses voting for what the messiah says...gives them a warm and fuzzy.

    Most are clueless about what's in the bills, and when conservatives raise an issue, well, we're just haters! We're haters because we have a brain, can rationalize, spot a con job, and don't agree with the raping of our children's future...unfortunately...libs are plain ignorant....

    July 15, 2009 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  23. TCM

    @ FAIR IS FAIR –

    Someone once said "Only in America are even those in poverty obese".
    So true! This is the best nation to be a poor, do-nothing...and with Obama's taxing those that are successful and have money, he's promoting and encouraging the masses to be welfare hounds...

    July 15, 2009 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  24. PFFT2

    The same way they paid for the 2 wars in the middle east!

    July 15, 2009 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |