History LIVE: President Obama signs historic healthcare bill (updated)

Yes they did. President Obama  signs healthcare reform into law as V.P. Joe Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Leader Harry Reid, Michigan Rep. John Dingell, 11-year-old Marceles Owens and others look on.

Goosebumps not inappropriate. The president signed historic legislation today granting every American a fundamental right to healthcare. Marcelas Owens, the 11-year-old boy who was mocked by conservatives for speaking out after losing his mom, who was uninsured, was there, as well as the family of Natoma Canfield, and of course, members of the Kennedy family, including Ted Kennedy’s widow, Vicky. (Read the president’s remarks here.) Video after the jump.

Meanwhile, a New York Times analysis questions whether the GOP’s united front will ultimately hurt them, especially when the bill fails to produce the Armageddon they’ve promised. A key passage:

many provisions of the bill that go into effect this year — like curbs on insurance companies denying coverage for pre-existing conditions, or the expansion of prescription drug coverage for the elderly — are broadly popular with the public. The more contentious ones, including the mandate for the uninsured to obtain coverage, do not take effect for years.

And in a week when Democrats are celebrating the passage of a historic piece of legislation, Republicans find themselves again being portrayed as the party of no, associated with being on the losing side of an often acrid debate and failing to offer a persuasive alternative agenda.

The Times also references David Frum, who argues that Republicans’ go for broke approach depending 100 percent on defeating Obama. But having thrown the kitchen sink at him and failed, the GOP is left with nothing. And…

Republicans also face the question of what happens if the health care bill does not create the cataclysm that they warned of during the many months of debate. Closing out the floor debate on Sunday night, the House Republican leader, Representative John A. Boehner of Ohio, warned that the legislation would be “the last straw for the American people.” Representative Marsha Blackburn, Republican of Tennessee, proclaimed several hours earlier, “Freedom dies a little bit today.”

Yet there are elements of the bill, particularly in regulating insurers, that could well prove broadly popular, and it could be years before anyone knows whether the legislation will have big effects on health care quality and the nation’s fiscal condition. Indeed, most Americans with insurance are unlikely to see any immediate change in their coverage, and several Republicans warned that the party could pay a price for that.

“When our core group discover that this thing is not as catastrophic as advertised, they are going to be less energized than they are right now,” Mr. Frum said.

In other words, Republicans are apparently going to spend the next six months insisting to people that their healthcare is getting worse, when in their actual experience, it’s not, or it’s even getting better.

Meanwhile, the tea parties are promising to become even uglier and fringier in response to the bill’s enactment.

Here’s the video:

This entry was posted in Barack Obama, Healthcare reform, News and Current Affairs, People, Politics and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>