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House of Representatives Passes Historic Health Insurance Reform Bill

Action now moves to the U.S. Senate

By Tim Walker

Monday, November 9, 2009 -- On Saturday night, the House of Representatives passed the Affordable Health Care for America Act, a landmark $1.2 trillion bill which will provide health coverage for millions of uninsured, require employers who aren’t providing insurance to pay into the system and create a public option as an alternative to private insurance. The House passed the bill by a 220-215 vote, with 39 Democrats in opposition and one Republican supporting it.

The National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel praised the House bill as “quality health care reform that is affordable and will cover nearly all Americans without taxing benefits.”

In particular, Van Roekel singled out the bill’s inclusion of a public plan and exclusion of an excise tax.

“By including a public health insurance plan option, the House has sided against ballooning insurance company profits and for real choice and competition for all,” Van Roekel explained.

“This bill is paid for without an excise tax," he added. "Such a tax would be devastating for America’s middle-class workers. It is crucial that the Senate act swiftly to get a bill to conference so a health insurance reform plan paid for without an excise tax can emerge.” 

President Obama has called on the Senate to “take the baton” and move quickly to approve legislation than can be merged with the House bill and sent to his desk for his signature before the end of the year.

Check here to see how your Congressional representative voted on the bill. If your representative supported the bill, be sure to pass along your thanks. To contact your representative, click here


Contact your representative to say thanks for supporting health insurance reform!