EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Opinion

November 23, 2013

Your view: Letters to the editor

(Continued)

I believe Sen. O’Connor Ives owes the working poor, as well as the progressives who supported her last year, an explanation.

Bill Taylor

Haverhill

Why did Tsongas fail to vote on ‘Keep Your Health Care’ bill?

To the editor:

There are very few times in which the whole country is talking about a domestic policy issue, and even fewer times when nearly everyone is agreed on that issue. Left and right, it’s hard to find someone who does not believe the rollout of Obamacare is a disaster — even if people disagree vehemently about the solutions.

Even people who normally pay little attention to politics are talking about this issue and are worried that they may lose their health insurance, and wonder what happened to President Obama’s constant reassurance that if they like their policy, they can keep it.

And left, right and center, committed and uncommitted, active or not, one thing people all expect from their member of Congress: When something as important as this comes up, your minimum responsibility is to vote on it. That’s what we pay you for.

Apparently, my representative, Niki Tsongas has a different idea of her job description than I do.

On Friday Nov. 15, 2013, the U.S. House of Representatives voted on a bill entitled the “Keep Your Health Care Act of 2013, it was HR 3350. The purpose of this bill was to make good on the promise of President Obama when he said, repeatedly, that “if you like your health care you can keep it.” There were variations on that statement, but this captures the gist of all of them.

The bill passed in the House on a vote of 261-157. On the yes side of the vote were 222 Republicans and 39 Democrats. That is 96.5 percent of the Republicans in the House and 19.5 percent of the Democrats. It isn’t what I would call bipartisan, but in this political climate, that’s about as close as it gets.

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