March 17th, 2010
10:18 AM ET

Key liberal congressman flips to 'yes' on health care vote

Health care reform advocates inched closer to victory Wednesday morning as a high-profile liberal Democrat switched his position and announced his intention to vote for a sweeping $875 billion plan now under consideration in the House of Representatives.

Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, said he believes "health care is a civil right." He had previously characterized the Senate bill as little more than a
boondoggle for private insurers.

Kucinich was publicly lobbied for his vote by President Barack Obama during the president's visit this week to Kucinich's congressional district.

"The president's visit to my district ... underscored the urgency of this vote," Kucinich said. "I have doubts about the bill ... [but] I've decided to
cast a vote in favor of the legislation."

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Filed under: Congress • Health Care • Politics
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. George

    Mr. I think that you have made a big mistake. I feel like you caved in to pressure from Obama. Yes Health Care needs reform but this present legislation is not the way to go.

    March 17, 2010 at 2:48 pm | Report abuse |
  2. American Thriough and Through

    Nooooooo! Don't do it!!!!! This bill has nothing to do with health care. It has everything to do with power, wealth, and control. Don't sell out the American people.

    March 17, 2010 at 4:27 pm | Report abuse |
  3. shelly wy

    Thank You God!!! A lot of people do not understand that illnesses keep many of us from the American Dream,,,,, and life.

    March 17, 2010 at 5:36 pm | Report abuse |

    Glad you are on board.

    March 17, 2010 at 5:54 pm | Report abuse |
  5. laura

    Thank You Mr Kucinich!

    March 17, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  6. James fett

    It would be a pity if nothing came of all the talk over the past 16 months. We need this "first step" in reform. Republicans should be ashamed of themselves for thinking more of politics than of the welfare of people in need.

    March 17, 2010 at 6:09 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Karl

    I'm glad he switched his vote. Congress ought to be ashamed of themselves. They all have healthcare while millions of Americans get sick every with nothing at all ! I don't care how much it cost me personally. Everyone deserves healthcare !

    March 17, 2010 at 6:17 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Paul

    You showed that your love for the America is above your own views. Thank you again.

    March 17, 2010 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Ken

    Hello America, although the bill is not perfect, it is the right step forward. and don't worry the goverment is not taking over helathcare like Foxnews and the republican are claiming. Foxnews and republican have nothing, absolutely nothing to argue against in substance so they are trying to go after the procedure. what a shame...........At least Kucinich acknowledge the need for change even if it is not perfect.....

    March 17, 2010 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Buddy

    Inch by inch we WILL get there. This is imperfect, BUT it is a step and without that first step, then we go down the more intractable road even further.

    March 17, 2010 at 9:11 pm | Report abuse |
  11. lisa

    What did Obama say to the people during the campaign? Don't let them bamboozale you. Well Dennis you just got bamboozaled. When the govt becomes so big and powerful that we don't have freedom. You'll only have yourselves to blame. Lisa

    March 17, 2010 at 9:22 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Artist3d

    From afar here in Canada, watching Americans struggle tooth and nail with some kind of Universal Health care is like watching children learn the ABCs of "pay unto otherrs as you would have them pay unto you". Together you will merely help to spread the costs for those less fortunate, much as Americans so generously give in times of any disaster. America's Health Care system is a 'Sicko' disaster. Listen to your Michael Moores and Bill Mahrs, Clintons and Obamas!

    It is certainly not a 'freedom' issue unless you feel you want to preserve your right to be ripped off by health insurance companies when it is a matter of life and death.

    March 17, 2010 at 10:24 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Russ

    Thank you Mr. Kucinich. Generations of poor, sick, people will thank you too. You did the right thing. Never doubt that.

    March 17, 2010 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Mary Koertje

    your tally is inaccurate where McNerney is concerned,,,,I received an e mail from him about noon pst stating he would vote for the bill

    March 20, 2010 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |