Bill Griffith Cnbc
November 19, 2009 by USA Post
HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) – Democratic leaders in Washington are declaring victory after the House of Representatives narrowly passed a healthcare overhaul bill Saturday night.
Alabama’s Fifth District Congressman Parker Griffith voted against the bill.
WAFF 48 News spoke with leadership from two North Alabama groups who have been very vocal in the health care reform debate.
Both have issues with the bill for very different reasons.
On the Wednesday before the house vote, protestors took to the streets here in Huntsville, one side in support of universal health coverage, one side against.
After a nearly 15 hour marathon session Saturday, the House of Representatives passed its version of a health care reform bill with a vote of 220 to 215.
Now these protestors share something in common, neither group is happy with the House bill.
“We were very disappointed. It was a very, very close vote,” said Christie Carden of the Huntsville Tea Party movement.
“The bill is a step in the right direction. A very small step in the right direction,” said Linda Haynes of North Alabama Health Care for All.
Carden has organized several protests against health care overhaul.
“Basically it just gives way too much control to the government. It’s not going to do anything to decrease the cost of insurance. We’re going to keep on and do everything we possibly can to keep it from passing the Senate,” she said.
For Linda Haynes of North Alabama Health Care for All, the bill doesn’t do enough.
“The way that it’s been set up, it’s going to be very few people that are going to be qualified to even use the public option. Really, this whole health care bill is a gift to the private insurance companies,” she said.
This debate is far from over.
The Senate still has to vote on its own version of the bill, and if it looks anything like the House bill, Senate Republicans have vehemently pledged to stop it.
President Obama said he’s confident the Senate will pass a bill by the end of the year.
If that happens, the Senate bill will go to a conference committee along with the House bill.
That committee will have to reconcile the two bills into one before Congress makes a final vote.
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