November 7th, 2009
07:00 PM ET
11 years ago

Hundreds protest health bill amid looming vote

Before Saturday's event ended, Republican lawmakers tried to dramatize the size of the Democrats’ bill by unfurling all 1,900 pages--taped together--from the Capitol’s east front to the top of the House steps.

Before Saturday's event ended, Republican lawmakers tried to dramatize the size of the Democrats’ bill by unfurling all 1,900 pages–taped together–from the Capitol’s east front to the top of the House steps.

Washington (CNN) - Foes of the House Democrats' health care bill rallied outside the Capitol Saturday afternoon, hours before what many of them anticipate will be a setback for their position - approval of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's bill.

"It may pass out of the House tonight. We do realize that," Jenny Beth Martin, event organizer for the Tea Party Patriots, said. "But there is the Senate still. And we are going to leave no stone unturned and fight the government taking over our health care."

Chanting "Kill the bill" and "Hell, no" throughout the nearly 90-minute rally, the few hundred attendees kept up their opposition despite having a much lower turnout than a similar rally held on Thursday.

More than a dozen Republican lawmakers spoke to the protesters and encouraged them to keep up the fight by speaking to wavering Democrats and their families, friends and neighbors about the legislation.

"We are here for one purpose: Kill the bill!" said Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tennessee.

"America doesn't need socialized medicine. We need jobs," Rep. Jack Kingston, R-Georgia, said.

"I diagnose [this bill] as a dead, rotting stinking fish that we will not eat," said Rep. Paul Broun, a Republican doctor from Georgia.

And in a fiery speech trying to convince the conservative "blue dog"

Democrats to vote against the bill, Rep. Joe Wilson, R-South Carolina, asked, "Are they a blue dog or a lap dog? We'll find out."

Earlier Saturday, President Barack Obama urged lawmakers in the House to pass the pending health care legislation.

"Millions of Americans are watching right now," the president toldreporters in a brief news conference in the White House Rose Garden. "Theirfamilies and businesses are counting on us. After all, this is why they sent us here: to finally confront the challenges that Washington had been putting off for decades. To make their lives better. To leave this country stronger than we found it."

Obama's comments came shortly after he had returned to the White House from Capitol Hill, where he met with the House Democratic leadership.

Filed under: GOP • Health care • Tea Party movement
soundoff (84 Responses)
  1. John Ca

    If your against this bill call-(202-585-3886 only if your against this bill.

    November 7, 2009 10:45 pm at 10:45 pm |
  2. John Ca

    I hope this vote does not pass so, we can go on to the Dems plan!!! closer than ever in try to help people who do not habve Health Care!!!

    November 7, 2009 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  3. John Ca

    This vote almost down 165-228!

    November 7, 2009 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  4. Jeffery Meaux, Sr.

    My hope is that the people in congress don't vote because of how their frat brothers (or sisters) vote, meaning those in the republican party or the democratic party. I would like to see the day where each one is an independent thinker and vote for what is best for the American people back home. Read the bill, if you think it good for our country vote YES, if it isn't vote NO. I know this is a simple solution but if followed I believe that Congress would have an approval rating better than 23%

    November 7, 2009 11:16 pm at 11:16 pm |
  5. T'SAH from Virginia

    Why do HUNDREDS of people think they speak for the entire country... The ones with the loudest mouth are the minority and they are so LOUD, they don't even realize their voices are not being heard!!!

    ALSO, if the REPUBLICAN'Ts are encouraging people to KILL THE BILL, then why are they offering a Health Care Bill or CLAIMING they have a Health Care Bill that is BETTER!!! They are actually protesting against themselves....ROTFLMAO... JEEZ, how stupid can they be!!!

    November 7, 2009 11:18 pm at 11:18 pm |
  6. Brian, Detroit, MI

    How many years? How many years did it take for the Republicans to push through a Trillion dollars in war spending, most of which was never even sent to Iraq or Afghanistan. Most of it was given to companies to make better military vehicles, better weapons, most of which didn't work. Can we get our money back for the ones that didn't? NOPE. Republicans love spending taxpayer dollars for meaningless crap. What they hate is Democrats spending any money, at all.
    No, this healthcare bill won't solve all of our problems, but it's a first step. Something the Republicans could have done, but didn't.

    November 7, 2009 11:36 pm at 11:36 pm |
  7. Charlie Brown

    Who care!?!?! It passed!!!! Hooray!!!

    November 7, 2009 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  8. tonyt

    Hey GOP/Haters The Last Health Care Reform This Country Had Was In Mid-1960's, 30+ years ago! If The GOP Thinks This Is Just Paper, Then Truly They Can't SeeThe Forest For The Trees!

    November 8, 2009 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  9. Tina

    They dont even know the specifics of what they are against. It is true HC needs to be every other social program in our Nation...but progress must not stop today. The true bill will be outlined in the days and months to come...under political fire...while some Americans are sacrificed by the loophole in this blanket broad signing. All they really have is a financial earmark with a gaping hole.

    November 8, 2009 02:22 am at 2:22 am |
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