Kucinich backs healthcare bill

WASHINGTON Wed Mar 17, 2010 2:02pm EDT

U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) waits to leave Andrews Air Force Base after stepping off Air Force One near Washington, March 15, 2010. REUTERS/Jim Young

U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) waits to leave Andrews Air Force Base after stepping off Air Force One near Washington, March 15, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/Jim Young

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democratic Representative Dennis Kucinich, saying he may be the "deciding vote," announced on Wednesday he will back the Senate-passed healthcare bill that President Barack Obama hopes to sign into law.

Kucinich announced his support after Obama, seeking to win final passage of the measure in what is likely to be a razor-close vote, personally urged him to do so during a visit to his home state of Ohio earlier this week.

Kucinich had opposed the earlier House of Representatives version of the bill because it did not have a public health insurance option. The Senate-passed bill does not have one either, but it is seen as the best chance for healthcare reform this year.

At a Capitol Hill news conference, Kucinich said he while he has concerns about the measure -- "it is not the bill I want" -- he will back it in what called a "historic fight" to overhaul the U.S. healthcare system and provide coverage to millions of uninsured Americans.

"The vote will be very close," Kucinich said. "I may be the deciding vote."

Democrats need 216 votes to win House passage.

Kucinich said he decided to vote for the bill following discussions with Obama, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and members of his own family.

(Reporting by John Whitesides; Writing by Thomas Ferraro)

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Comments (9)
klgrube wrote:
What kind of an idiot is this guy? What makes him think for two seconds that he gets to gut the Constitution by voting for this bill? I swear I will stop paying taxes if this bill passes. I will NOT have my tax dollars used to pay for elective abortions. How DARE he misrepresent the people of his district and this country like this? He KNOWS we hate these stupid games the House is playing to try to force this bill through, and he KNOWS the people of this country DO NOT WANT THIS BILL!!! What part of this does he not understand?

Mar 17, 2010 10:57am EDT  --  Report as abuse
klgrube wrote:
What kind of an idiot is this guy? What makes him think for two seconds that he gets to gut the Constitution by voting for this bill? I swear I will stop paying taxes if this bill passes. I will NOT have my tax dollars used to pay for elective abortions. How DARE he misrepresent the people of his district and this country like this? He KNOWS we hate these stupid games the House is playing to try to force this bill through, and he KNOWS the people of this country DO NOT WANT THIS BILL!!! What part of this does he not understand?

Mar 17, 2010 10:57am EDT  --  Report as abuse
mick333 wrote:
Sorry klgrube…your Republican talking point and misinformation about abortion payments is not effective amongst American who can read any more than those who esposed the plan as containing “death panels”.

No wonder college educated voters of every sub group classification voted democratic.

Sarah Palin was your heart beat away choice too no doubt.

Mar 17, 2010 11:39am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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