January 19th, 2010
11:10 PM ET
13 years ago

Democrat: Suspend health care reform until Brown is seated

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/08/15/senator.visits.myanmar/art.myanmar.webb.afp.gi.jpg caption="Sen. Jim Webb of Virginia said it would be 'fair and prudent' to suspend health care reform legislation."]Washington (CNN) - A moderate Democratic senator is calling on his colleagues to shelve health care reform legislation until Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown takes his seat in the United States Senate.

"In many ways the campaign in Massachusetts became a referendum not only on health care reform but also on the openness and integrity of our government process, Sen. Jim Webb of Virginia said in a statement Tuesday after Brown defeated Democrat Martha Coakley in the special election for the late Sen. Edward Kennedy's seat.

"It is vital that we restore the respect of the American people in our system of government and in our leaders. To that end, I believe it would only be fair and prudent that we suspend further votes on health care legislation until Senator-elect Brown is seated."

Filed under: 2010 • Extra • Jim Webb • Massachusetts • Popular Posts • Scott Brown • Virginia
soundoff (212 Responses)
  1. Slider

    Senator Webb, you are an honest man, and a decent one, too.

    But your party isn't either of these things.

    You can always come home, Jim.

    We'll leave the light on for ya...

    January 20, 2010 12:40 am at 12:40 am |
  2. JMikey54

    The Senate should just defer to the House at this time and just let the House pass the version of health care reform that the Senate has already passed there is no need to try to pass anything on health care reform in the senate it will not happen now. The senate version is a good start and the house can and should go ahead and adopt it and send it to the president to sign into law.

    January 20, 2010 12:41 am at 12:41 am |
  3. Kenneth

    As a Independent who is middle-ground on most things it is very nice to read about a politician making a statement like this. Sen. Webb you have my respect.

    January 20, 2010 12:41 am at 12:41 am |
  4. Vera

    I totally disagree with Senator Webb.

    January 20, 2010 12:43 am at 12:43 am |
  5. TEP

    I grew up on the Cape- I was a Kennedy person and Teddy was my hero. Jim Web is seeing the writing on the wall because never in my life (Kennedy took office when I was 11) did I expect to see this and it means something. Everyone will spin it their way but the bottiom line is that if Massachusetts did this then there is little doubt this government has lost the trust and respect of its constituents.

    January 20, 2010 12:44 am at 12:44 am |
  6. Conservative Voter

    Wow, Senator Webb is just the kind of man we need in office. If we had more politicians like him, behaving in an honorable manner, we might resolve some of the problems in this country.

    Thank you Senator Webb!

    January 20, 2010 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
  7. Mary in NV

    This is a reasonable and just suggestion. If you aren't sure of what you are doing....take the time to figure it out. This is a fair and open minded man trying to be the voice of reason – something not often heard of on the hill.

    January 20, 2010 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  8. Richard

    Wow... there is at least 1 Democrat that has a sense of honor and integrity. Where was he during all the "close door", "back room" deal making that was going on. Just wait...... the tidal wave has only begun. Just wait until the mid term elections. If the DEMS can't even hold MA.....well, you figure it out.

    January 20, 2010 12:47 am at 12:47 am |
  9. CapeCodder

    Some believe that ramming health care through and proving later it is good for us is exactly the behavior that has seen MASSACHUSETTS throw the tea over board for a second time. Jim Web is a smart man. Hey...we beat the British...when Bostonians finally get pissed, you better listen Up...Yankee Doodle.

    January 20, 2010 12:48 am at 12:48 am |
  10. glen beck is off his meds again

    i think people should really take a look at this idiots top supporters...INSURANCE COMPANIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! whatever! he didnt win this election, he bought it! its simple to see that, look at the donors, all outa state, and HUGE corps, whats new for repukes!

    January 20, 2010 12:49 am at 12:49 am |
  11. Tony L

    Senator Webb, please note democrats have lost only a senate seat NOT the majority. There are still 57 democrats and 2 independents and only 41 Republicans in US senate, even after the loss in Massachusetts. You and other Dems are acting as you have lost the majority. You are letting Repubs set the agenda by acting like fools.
    The people(voters) of Massachusetts already have health care insurance legislation passed by their state. Most all of people in state are covered. So they are selfish and do not give a crap for the rest of the country. They wish to send a message to Dems and Obama for the unemployment and recession in economy. They don't have a dog in the fight for health care insurance reform. I hope you get this before messing up more.

    January 20, 2010 12:49 am at 12:49 am |
  12. AnnieL

    No, don't wait for Brown to be seated. Kill the bills now and do nothing. Let "the people"s" Senator Brown and his gloating fellow Republicans put THEIR plan on the table. I really want to see what they have for my son with Type 1 diabetes who can't get insurance if he loses his job–and couldn't afford it even if he could get it while he is paying back his student loan to Citibank. Now if I can just keep MY job, which is covering my husband who lost HIS job at age 62–three years shy of Medicare eligibility. If that happens, my whole family is without insurance. But Republicans don't have to listen to ME and I am sure they won't.

    January 20, 2010 12:49 am at 12:49 am |
  13. Bashill

    This is NOT a referendum on ObamaCare by a LONG SHOT.
    70% of Americans WANT a new health care system and we will NOT be stopped by the high school drop-outs from the Republican base.

    January 20, 2010 12:50 am at 12:50 am |
  14. Jen Smith

    I just want to say that this individual has my respect for LISTENING to the public. Regardless of what side of the debate you are on, rushing through this process secondary to fear of allowing the new Senator to sit first is desperate at best. How about the Senators of this nation actually listening to their constituents, for or against whatever bill is being presented, including the health care bill, and voting accordingly. The only way to accurately and properly account for the wishes of the people is to allow all of the people, including those represented by Mr. Brown, to be represented during the voting process.

    January 20, 2010 12:51 am at 12:51 am |
  15. chris24

    This became a referendum on MONEY, period.

    When the Republicans can concentrate on one seat, they can outspend anyone.

    You don't think the insurance industry backed this Republican, do you?

    Let's see, one seat, stop the entire process of medical insurance reform. Sounds pretty cheap to me.

    January 20, 2010 12:53 am at 12:53 am |
  16. Serious about change

    THis guy cannot be serious suspend government until a senetor is seated? I am not a republican or democrat, but suspending government is not prudent, it is ridiculous.

    January 20, 2010 12:53 am at 12:53 am |
  17. Dan Chong

    Senator Jim Webb of Virgina acknowledged that it is the time of reflecting the nation's demand through the due process and respect for the system. All politicians of both sides shall restore our trust on them as he stated.

    January 20, 2010 12:54 am at 12:54 am |
  18. Walter J Smith

    Good for Jim Webb!

    It is refreshing to see that a Democratic Senator both sees the disaster the Democrats have brought upon themselves, but more importantly, upon the whole government! All the wheeling and dealing; all the secret sweetheart deals with PhRMA, the insurers; and those most repugnant senators who demanded their votes be double purchased – both by their favorite clients and with special provisions in the legislation; and Obama's repugnant double dealing all the way through the process, talking public health care reform while privately/secretly insisting upon private deals that may or may not be worth having at any cost. It is an abysmal way to end the first year that began with such great hope. No one is more to blame than Barack Obama and his most ardent supporters, staff included.

    January 20, 2010 12:55 am at 12:55 am |
  19. Matt

    Although Senator Webb speaks with honor and integrity, I'd be curious what the Republicans would do if the shoe was on the other foot. My guess is that they'd kick the Democrats in the face with it.

    January 20, 2010 12:56 am at 12:56 am |
  20. Chris

    Jim Webb is right, there is no need to rush anything.

    We, Americans, ...all of us... need good health care that is reliable, affordable, and can't be yanked away when we get sick. No one disagrees about that.

    January 20, 2010 12:59 am at 12:59 am |
  21. stillmanbd@aol.com

    Can I hear a Hip Hip Hoo-Ray! I think there's one thing we can count on here. The Democrats will NOW run scared and will be more concerned about keeping their seats than passing a horrendous Health Deform Bill! In short – I think it's safe to say the Health Care Bill is now DEAD!

    January 20, 2010 12:59 am at 12:59 am |
  22. jane

    I think the Democrats are between a rock and a hard place. If they don't pass the health insurance reform bill now after they've spent so much time on it, they're surely going to be a laughing stock - and justifiably so (were it not so tragic). I think their best bet would be to go ahead before Brown is sworn in. It's one of the things they were elected to do. If they can't come to enough agreement to do that, well, I don't think they're much good for anything - except that simply by virtue of begin in the majority, they can at least keep the Republicans from turning us into a country of aristocrats and peasants.

    January 20, 2010 01:03 am at 1:03 am |
  23. Nea

    So what are the Democrats going to do now cry over spilt milk you lost this round get over it and quit pulling yourself down its time to move on pick yourself up and dust yourself off and get ready to fight for the people and quit thinking about whats in it for you.

    January 20, 2010 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  24. Elle

    This just makes me ill. This is the closest the American people have ever been to getting a decent overhaul to health care and now we may as well kiss it goodbye. I am literally in tears. This is such a disappointment. I'm sick of party lines. Look at what the middle-class needs and not what your "party" says we need. So sad. So disappointing.

    January 20, 2010 01:15 am at 1:15 am |
  25. JCarlos

    Makes a lot of sense, standing above party loyalties. Congratulations!

    January 20, 2010 01:17 am at 1:17 am |
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