Friday, March 19, 2010

Altmire To Vote No On ObamaCare

Finally, my congressman announces his intentions.

From KDKA:

Altmire confirmed that he has decided to vote no in a telephone conversation with KDKA Political Editor Jon Delano.

In the final push for Obamacare passage, Jason Altmire (D-PA) has been besieged by his own colleagues in the House and in DC, activists from both sides of the argument, and his own constituents as we fought for his attention through emails, phone calls, and rallies. The WSJ reported:

A recent poll in his district asked the straightforward question, "Do you generally support or oppose the reform plan?" Precisely 29% support it. Conversely, 60% believe it will raise their health costs, 72% believe it will raise the deficit, and 68% believe it will cause their taxes to go up.

And Altmire himself acknowledged it is not what his voters want:

“I really am trying to be thoughtful,” said Altmire, D-4, McCandless Township. “The number one factor is where my district is (on health-care reform), and my district is overwhelmingly against it at this point.”


“They have great concerns about this bill,” he said. “If I vote no, it’s going to be because a great majority of my district doesn’t support this bill.”

Today, he announces that he has listened to his voters. Thank goodness, because yours truly is one of many who have sent email after email while listening to the busy signal from his office phones. (Thank you, Organizing for America, for helping to make sure that when it mattered, I could not get through to my elected representative.)

From the statement on his website - emphasis mine:

"I ran for Congress in large part because I believe we need to find a way to bring down the cost of health care. I also ran for Congress with a simple promise: I would do my best to represent my district and to give western Pennsylvania a voice in Washington, not the other way around.


It has become clear that the vast majority of my constituents want me to oppose this bill.


The politically easy vote would have been to vote with my party. But I was notsent to Congress to take the easy way out or to vote the way they want me to vote in Washington. I was elected to represent my district and give western Pennsylvania a voice in Congress. I strongly believe that a vote in opposition to the health care bill is consistent with the views of the district I represent, and is the correct vote based on the impact of the bill on my constituents and the overall health care system."

This is exactly what I want in a person elected to represent me. When Altmire voted against the original House bill, there were insinuations that he was "allowed" to, because Nancy Pelosi already had the votes she needed. This can not have been an easy decision... but it was the right one.

Thank you, Jason Altmire... for doing your job. I'll keep it in mind when you come up for your next "performance evaluation" in November.

1 comment:

Matt said...

Good for him. Innominatus is reporting that his Dem representative is voting no as well. It's a start. Perhaps they will survive the bloodletting that will occur on November.