Who Are the Dems Who Voted Against Health-Care Reform?
Speaker Nancy Pelosi saw her historic health-care reform legislation pass the House of Representatives this weekend, eking out victory with a two-vote margin. But 39 Democrats voted against the legislation, despite months of wrangling to appease the concerns of members from more conservative districts.
Mike Ross, leader of the House Blue Dog Coalition, lobbed a "no" vote, after having held up legislation in committee before the summer recess. As a member of the Energy and Commerce Committee, Ross was able to marshal the seven Blue Dog members of his committee to sow the seeds of opposition to the bill.
(As ProPublica reported, Ross not only enjoys the largess of mucho health sector dollars in the form of campaign contributions; he and his wife made a million-dollar killing in what appears to be a sweetheart deal with a large pharmacy chain. In Ross's congressional district, 22 percent of constituents report having no health insurance.)
Of the 39 naysayers, 31 hail from districts won by John McCain in the presidential race. Only one progressive vote against the legislation: Dennis Kucinich of Ohio, who continues to advocate for a single-payer health-care system.
Here are the 39, listed in alphabetical order. The New York Times has a nifty chart that ranks the members according to the margin of victory in their districts for either McCain or Obama in the 2008 presidential election. (Links go to their official Web sites, where you can leave them a message.)