Pelosi celebrates historic health care law

March 29, 2010 5:57:04 PM PDT
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, was greeted with a standing ovation in San Francisco on Monday. She and Congressman George Miller, D-Martinez, were met by supporters at a senior center to celebrate the passage of the healthcare bill.

Pelosi was preaching to the choir in San Francisco, but she is counting on her message going out beyond the Bay Area and to the rest of the country. She was lauded by her supporters as a crusader for pushing through the healthcare law. For her part, Pelosi praised the party and President Barack Obama.

"We set upon a course to make a difference for the American people," she said. "He [the president] was unwavering, unwavering in his support for comprehensive health insurance reform for all Americans. Unwavering."

Virginia Donohue, owner of a pet-sitting service in San Francisco, told the crowd how she used to pay $30,000 to cover the health insurance for her 20 employees, but in the past 10 years that insurance cost has tripled.

"We spend a back-breaking $90,000 a year on health insurance," she said. "This law means that relief is in sight for us."

Pelosi says that as more people understand what is in the bill, the better it will be for Democratic lawmakers who supported it.

"The American people are very wise," Pelosi said. "I have absolutely no doubt when they know that they will no longer be thrown to the wolves of the insurance companies, that they will be happy about that."

Tom Del Beccaro, vice chair of the California Republican Party, says the rest of the country is not buying Pelosi's message.

"Look, San Francisco likes Nancy, but the rest of the country has to pay her bills," he said.

This past week, a number of large corporations claimed the health care law will cut into their corporate profits by eliminating some tax cuts and adding mandated coverage.

"Look, corporations pass it on. This bill will be a job killer over time," Del Beccaro said. "And they chose government mandates over private solutions which would have insured more jobs, not taken them away."

Democratic Congressman Henry Waxman of Los Angeles is calling on AT&T, John Deere and Caterpillar to prove it. He is asking those companies to show how the health care law will cut into their profits, and has scheduled a congressional hearing for April 21.


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