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WMUR - Reps. Hodes, Shea Porter Vote 'Yes' On Health Care Bill

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The Democratic-controlled Congress approved historic legislation extending health care to tens of millions of Americans who lack it and cracking down on insurance company abuses.

The vote in the House was 219-212. Republicans were unanimously opposed.

As day turned into night the U.S. House of Representatives inched closer and closer to passing the health care reform bill, already passed by the senate.

Both New Hampshire's U.S. Representatives, voted in favor of the bill Congressman Paul Hodes, D-N.H., said passage of the bill would do nothing but good.

"This is an important piece of legislation. It has been debated for a year, and now we will be providing the American people and people of New Hampshire what they have long asked for, help from a health care system that's broken," said Hodes.

Hodes went on to say the health care bill would provide a great deal of help for small businesses, middle class families, and working class families in New Hampshire.

"It means 35,000 plus small businesses will be getting the biggest tax break that we can give them in order to provide health insurance for their employees," said Hodes.

Congresswoman Carol Shea Porter, D- N.H., spoke on the house floor and echoed his sentiments.

"Obviously there's mixed opinions about this bill but there's been a great deal of pride on the part of the Democrats because every president has tried to pass a health care bill for all Americans and we are finally going to do it," said Shea Porter.

On Saturday some voters in New Hampshire gathered in front of Congresswoman Shea Porter's Dover office, hoping to persuade her to change her tune.

"The bill they are pushing through is unconstitutional and also we can't afford it," said Jerry DeLemus.

"If you have healthcare but no job how are you going to pay for health care?," said Dave Batchelder.

Opponents called it a government take over and begged for legislators to say no to it. As the house members gathered on Capitol Hill, poised to vote, protestors just hoped their voices were heard.

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