Local Politics

Health reform opponents target Etheridge

Posted March 16, 2010

— For the second time in five days, people opposed to President Barack Obama's efforts to overhaul the nation's health care system rallied Tuesday on Fayetteville Street in downtown Raleigh.

A coalition of conservative advocacy groups held a demonstration outside 2nd District Congressman Bob Etheridge's office in an effort to sway his vote on the pending health reform legislation, which is expected to come up for a House vote in the next few days.

Anti-reform rally held in downtown Raleigh Anti-reform rally held in downtown Raleigh

Reform opponents said they need the support of 38 Democratic House members to block passage of the bill, and Etheridge is among the few undecided votes left.

Etheridge was in Washington, D.C., Tuesday because the House was in session.

Twenty-two Democrats have already said they plan to vote against the reform bill, including three from North Carolina – 7th District Congressman Mike McIntyre, 8th District Congressman Larry Kissell and 11th District Congressman Heath Shuler.

Last week, conservative groups staged a similar rally on Fayetteville Street, and supporters of the reform bill organized a counter-demonstration across the street to encourage Etheridge to vote for the proposal.

Etheridge voted for health reform last fall and has said he would support a compromise bill with the Senate if the plan reins in health care costs, ensures quality care, provides access and preserves choice of providers.

Obama has traveled to Pennsylvania, Missouri and Ohio in recent weeks to drum up grassroots support for the bill.


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  • james27613 Mar 17, 2010

    Be sure to watch Glen Beck on FOX, he will play audio
    of Pres. Obama talking about how this first step will lead to
    social health care just like canada.

    Canada also did it by passing several bills.

    Obama socialist president.

  • josephlawrence43 Mar 17, 2010

    ratherbnnc: $400 Billion cut from Medicare Advantage--true. The funds to be used to increase health insurance coverage for those who don't have it. Savings are problematic. Consider that the proposed health care bill will create 180 NEW government agencies and boards, and hire how many NEW bureaucrats-all of whom have to be funded and paid. So where are the savings? Doesn't matter who or what happened in the past--what we are dealing with is the present and future, and the consequences if this abortion passes. And its not looking so good at the moment.

  • original intent Mar 17, 2010

    In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, Two is a Law Firm, and Three or more is a congress. ~ John Adams

  • NCSU2311 Mar 17, 2010

    Didnt the GOP have 6 years and Bush for healthcare? Where were they? What were the doing? OHH they were building hospitals in Iraq. They were rebuilding a MUSLIM country. Thanks guys. Ill pay for your one way ticket to Iraq. Just shoot me a message.

  • ncken1 Mar 17, 2010

    Unfortunately there are a lot of people that don't deserve any more health care than they presently receive. They made choices in their life that led to their own detriment. A teenage gang member received debilitating injuries from knife wounds and gun shots during several fights in High School. He has never worked a day in the past 26 years yet has received supplemental social security payments and access to medical care.
    People who neglect their 12 years of education opportunities, don’t work and opt for a lower standard of living don’t deserve health care. People who continue to have children they cannot afford and don’t work don’t deserve health care. All of these people who are gaming the system will flood the system when the gates are opened. They are presently getting more health care than they deserve.

  • NCSU2311 Mar 17, 2010

    NC already has government run health insurance. We have since 2007. Its called Inclusive Health.

  • ratherbnnc Mar 17, 2010


    Your post concerning the cuts to Medicare that will be cut by hundereds of millions of dollars to fund Obamacare is a little off base from reality. The Medicare cuts are coming from the Republican initiated Medicare Advantage Plan which has cost over $400 million dollars and is a waste of taxpayer money. That money will be moved to the new Health Care Plan. It has been shown that was a waste of money as it gives only certain seniors the benefit of getting prescriptions and not others.
    Your assertion that reimbursement rates will be cut affecting quality care by Doctors and hospitals is not quite accurate either. The new plan will provide incentives and bonuses for Doctors, Hospitals, and Clinics ( particularly in rural areas) to provide quality care and follow up on all patients, and not just treat those who come in sick and say see you later.

  • littleriver69 Mar 17, 2010

    NO on the bill. Its worthless and too costly. NO NO NO!!!!!!

  • ratherbnnc Mar 17, 2010

    US Postal Service is going to lose 7 BILLION OF YOUR tax dollars this year alone! mep

    Well, that's not quite accurate and surely misleading! The US Postal Service is not taxpayer funded. They are funded solely from revenues they generate.

  • Finz Up Mar 17, 2010

    "Rep. Etheridge; I support the health care bill now before you now and applaud the courage of the members of Congress who understand the need for reform."

    People of courage don't need congressional tricks to hide their vote from the public. Don't worry Bob...nancy will make sure your feathers are covered. The rest of us however will be set to pluck you from the ranks