Dodd & Healthcare Reform

Health Care for American Now is running an ad thanking Senator Chris Dodd for his work on the HELP Committee to put forward legislation that includes a public health insurance option.

HCAN will have even more to thank for, as the HELP Committee has just passed  their version of the bill out of committee. Jonathan Cohn reports that in the end, Dodd chose putting out a good bill over a bipartisan one:

There will be a lot of commentary about the Committee’s failure to attract any Republican support; Christopher Dodd, who has been serving as chairman in Kennedy’s absence, expressed repeatedly his “regret” that bipartisan support proved elusive. But he also stated that he was content with the choice that he, and his fellow Democrats, made. “The important issue is a good bill,” Dodd said in a press conference after the vote. “I will not sacrifice a good bill for [the sake of bipartisanship.]”

Dodd went on to note that a weak bill, even one with bipartisan support, might be difficult to sustain, both during the congressional debate and afterwards. In other words, a weak bill would do less for the American people–and they would be less satisfied with it.

Are you listening, Max Baucus?

If the Senate ends up passing a final version of healthcare legislation that combines the HELP and Finance bills and includes a strong public health insurance option, it will be directly because of Chris Dodd’s leadership. His work kept this key component in the legislation and thus has kept it a reality moving forward. Kudos, Senator Dodd – you’ve more than earned the thanks of HCAN and many, many other Americans

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