Senate Passes SCHIP

The Senate passed the reauthorization and expansion of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program yesterday 67-29. Eighteen Republicans crossed party lines to give the bill enough votes to override Bush’s expected veto. They did not include Richard Shelby (R-AL) or Jeff Sessions (R-AL), who voted no despite Gov. Bob Riley’s support for the program. Yeah, I was surprised too. Not.

Now the ball is in Bush’s court, and I feel sure he’ll dig in his heels no matter what anyone says to him. The House vote, unfortunately, was not veto-proof, and I doubt there will be a 14-vote swing when the bill comes back.

To the bipartisan backers, I say stick to your guns. If Bush wants to add to his legacy by vetoing a program that has helped to provide health insurance coverage for millions of children, you can’t stop him, and you shouldn’t enable him. Keep sending the bill till either he or fourteen more House members come to their senses.

6 Responses to “Senate Passes SCHIP”

  1. Larry says:

    Sad thing is Bush will veto it and millions of poor kids will still do without healthcare.

  2. Kathy says:

    Larry, I’m hoping the Senate vote will hold and perhaps there will be a shift in the House when the bill comes back — as we know it will. Funny how Bush can make the spurious argument that Congress doesn’t support the troops if it dares to review his funding requests, but he has no problem allowing this program to expire even though it helps millions of children.

  3. KathyF says:

    You mean the Senate finally outdid the House on backing good legislation? I’m shocked.

  4. Kathy says:

    Yeah, it’s pretty stunning, given the only other thing they’ve passed lately is a resolution to condemn MoveOn.org.

  5. All political calculations aside, I am sorry, but I am not a fan of how this legislation is funded. I don’t have a problem with paying for ALL children to have health care, but it should be an equal burden. Raising tobacco taxes to pay for it is a political cop-out to not piss everybody off by having to raise taxes or cut spending on something else. I hope he vetoes it, unless Congress makes children’s health care a SHARED burden.

  6. Del says:

    I’m all for funding a base level of health care for everybody, not just kids, but I have trouble thinking of smokers as a special group to be rescued from discriminatory taxation. My fantasy is that (as I believe some Republican objectors have predicted) the tax will indeed be so high that more smokers will quit, forcing them to find the money elsewhere.

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