Obama signs landmark health care reform bill

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Today President Barack Obama signed into law a landmark health care reform bill, presiding over the biggest shift in U.S. domestic policy since the 1960s and capping a divisive, yearlong debate that could define the November congressional elections.

The law will bring near-universal coverage to a wealthy country in which tens of millions of people are uninsured. The plan’s provisions will be phased in over four years, and it is expected to expand coverage to about 94 percent of eligible non-elderly Americans would have coverage, compared with 83 percent today.

“We have now just enshrined the core principle that everybody should have some basic security when it comes to their health,” Obama said at a signing ceremony at the White House, where he was joined by House and Senate Democrats who backed the bill as well as ordinary Americans whose health care struggles have touched the president.

“We are not a nation that scales back its aspirations. We are not a nation that falls prey to doubt or mistrust,” Obama said. “That’s not who we are. That’s not how we got here.”

The plan is expected to extend coverage to 32 million uninsured Americans, reduce federal budget deficits and ban such insurance company practices as denying coverage to people with existing medical problems.

Obama has pushed health care as his top priority since taking office in January 2009. Failure would have weakened him and endangered other issues on the president’s ambitious domestic agenda, including immigration reform and climate change legislation.

Associated Press

3 Responses to Obama signs landmark health care reform bill

  1. THIS MOMENTOUS DAY!

    Not one day in anyone’s life is an uneventful day, no day without profound meaning, no matter how dull and boring it might seem, no matter whether you are a seamstress or a queen, a shoeshine boy or a movie star, a renowned philosopher or a Down’s syndrome child.

    Because in every day of your life, there are opportunities to perform little kindnesses for others, both by conscious acts of will and unconscious example.

    Each smallest act of kindness – even just words of hope when they are needed, the remembrance of a birthday, a compliment that engenders a smile – reverberates across great distances and spans of time, affecting lives unknown to the one whose generous spirit was the source of this good echo, because kindness is passed on and grows each time it’s passed, until a simple courtesy becomes an act of selfless courage years later and far away.

    Likewise, each small meanness, each thoughtless expression of hatred, each envious and bitter act, regardless of how petty, can inspire others, and is therefore the seed that ultimately produces evil fruit, poisoning people whom you have never met and never will.

    All human lives are so profoundly and intricately entwined – those dead, those living, those generations yet to come – that the fate of all is the fate of each, and the hope of humanity rests in every heart and in every pair of hands.

    Therefore, after every failure, we are obliged to strive again for success, and when faced with the end of one thing, we must build something new and better in the ashes, just as from pain and grief, we must weave hope, for each of us is a thread critical to the strength – the very survival – of the human tapestry.

    Every hour in every life contains such often-unrecognized potential to affect the world that the great days for which we, in our dissatisfaction, so often yearn are already with us; all great days and thrilling possibilities are combined always in THIS MOMENTOUS DAY!

    Excerpt from Dean Koontz’s book, “From the Corner of His Eye”.

    It embodies the idea of how the smallest of acts can have such a profound effect on each of our lives.

    Preston
    March 23, 2010 at 11:11 am

  2. I’m sorry but I don’t get it. The US government has been the largest provider of health care coverage since Medicare and Medicaid came into law back in 1965. So why is the private sector the problem? $4.00 out of every $7.00 spent on health care is through the federal government.

    This is only going to lead to more government control of our already over taxed lives. So please educate me on why this bill is the best bill.

    Karl Mason
    March 23, 2010 at 12:15 pm

  3. Wow! Lucky us. We now have nationalized health care. If you are fortunate enough to be part of a corporate plan and you have a spouse and kids, the average true cost if your plan is about $17k per year, with your employer footing most of the cost. Lucky you! You’ll get to pay a $6,800 tax on your plan. Oh, taxes on investments will go up too! Yippie! Enjoying the “CHANGE?” I may be changing to a bank in Aruba.

    From the Forgotten Man by William Sumner:

    The type and formula of most schemes of philanthropy or humanitarianism is this: A and B put their heads together to decide what C shall be made to do for D.

    [From above, I am C. Preston is D]

    The radical vice of all these schemes, from a sociological point of view, is that C is not allowed a voice in the matter, and his position, character, and interests, as well as the ultimate effects on society through C’s interests, are entirely overlooked. I call C the Forgotten Man.

    [Karl Mason, every other tax payer and I are the forgotten man]

    For once let us look him up and consider his case, for the characteristic of all social doctors is, that they fix their minds on some man or group of men whose case appeals to the sympathies and the imagination, and they plan remedies addressed to the particular trouble; they do not understand that all the parts of society hold together, and that forces which are set in action act and react throughout the whole organism, until an equilibrium is produced by a re-adjustment of all interests and rights.

    They therefore ignore entirely the source from which they must draw all the energy which they employ in their remedies, and they ignore all the effects on other members of society than the ones they have in view. They are always under the dominion of the superstition of government, and, forgetting that a government produces nothing at all, they leave out of sight the first fact to be remembered in all social discussion – that the

    State cannot get a cent for any man without taking it from some other man, and this latter must be a man who has produced and saved it. This latter is the Forgotten Man.

    Now, issue number 2: Article 1 Section 7 of the US Constitution:

    All bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the
    Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills.

    [This bill which includes taxes for raising revenue did not originate in the House. It originated in the Senate, therefore the procedure to bring it into law was unconstitutional. That in itself trumps any other reason to oppose this law]

    Christopher Colvin
    March 23, 2010 at 8:52 pm