Sunday, March 21, 2010

Dear Senator Kennedy

May I call you Teddy? We have been through so much together, I feel I knew you. I hope wherever you are tonight, you are able to comprehend, on some level, that your lifelong dream has come true.

You probably wouldn't like the bill as it is at this point, but, I think I know what you'd say. "It's a start." You always said change is made in small steps. The Reconciliation bill will undoubtedly pass the Senate this week. I can't imagine that the Senate Democrats, many of whom you would have been ashamed, by the way, would dare NOT pass it. After all, they professed to dislike the bill as it was, because there were too many deals made, and those deals are rescinded in the Reconciliation bill. But, who knows what will happen, the Democratic Party being what it is.

One thing this long fight has done is, introduce us to a man named Bart Stupak, who has stubbornly voted his conscience every step of the way. He is Pro-Life, in a party that is mostly Pro-Choice, and he fought for what he believed, relentlessly voting "no" in the face of tremendous pressure from his peers in the House. He finally did give in, at the eleventh hour, but not until he was able to get President Obama to sign an Executive Order, assuring him and other Pro-Life members that the new healthcare bill would not allow for Federally funded abortions. He actually wanted more than that, but, like you, he was flexible enough to realize that this was the most he could get, and he really wanted Healthcare to pass. So, when he got on board, he got on all the way, suffering the glares and slurs thrown at him by the Republicans. One man in the chamber actually called him "baby-killer". We ought to know who yelled that out by tomorrow, if the media has its way.

I don't have to tell you how uncivil politics has become, and how unyielding the Republicans are. Somehow, I think if you had lived long enough, you could have maybe cajoled at least one or two "yes" votes out of them. But, no matter. Your party did it without them, many putting their political lives on the line in order to do the right thing.

Teddy dear, I'm betting that you haven't been resting very peacefully up to now. But, as of tonight, you can be proud that your dream didn't die with you. The work will go on, and the cause will endure. Your dream will, truly, never die.

The Lion of the Senate sleeps tonight.

Stay tuned.


Kay Dennison said...

Lovely, Betty!!! Very well said!!!!

Arkansas Patti said...

I am sure Teddy would appreciate your conversation.
This whole process has been as tiring as digging a hole in water but finally it is done. Or is it?
We have set new standards for ugliness.

Margie's Musings said...

Isn't that the truth! So many people have conspired to invent lies to mislead the American people who don't take the time to read the bill for themselves..or even a synopsis of it. They just buy into what the naysayers have to say without question.

Olga said...

I am distressed, even sickened, at how ugly the political system has become and the faux news industry that foments that ugliness and hatred. I can't even be happy about a health care bill yet.

Sister--Three said...

Well, when this all started I had hopes of finally retiring from teaching. I am finishing up year 38. But help with a gov. plan was axed from the bill. So, now I know I will have to teach at least 40 years and maybe more before retirement. I would draw about 2400 dollars a month if I quit, but would have to pay for health care out of it and I carry my husband so if both insurances came out of my check...that would be over half of it. I don't think I can vote for B. Lincoln again. I know she supported the bill with her vote, but in the end she worked against it. I guess Bill Halter will get my vote this year.

Wonder if you could blog about Halter vs. Lincoln, Betty, help me decide. Ross and Berry did not vote for his only Vic Snyder voted for it.

Most of the stuff my friends stated to me about the bill were falsehoods they heard and repeated...proving that most Arkansans and US citizens are illiterate and can not read for themselves.

Darlene said...

Betty, I am celebrating. At this point I don't care if the bill is not perfect. It is a start and the fight will go on to make it better.

We can't stop now. Your letter to Teddy was moving and I only wish he had been here to see this historic moment. There would have been a few more 'ayes' from the Democratic side if he had been here to twist arms.

Health care is so much better now and those greedy insurance companies have been reigned in. I won't stop until my dying breath until 'single payer' becomes a reality.

Tincanman said...

A good start on healthcare reform is better than no start at all. I'm sure Teddy would approve. Great post, Betty.

Linda said...

Betty, another wonderful post! Ted Kennedy has been on my mind a lot these days. I so wish he could have lived to see the vote last night. I believe we would have seen a better bill had his health allowed him to see it through to completion. It could also be that he's on my mind because I'm currently reading his book, which I can highly recommend.

Susie said...

Well said, Betty. I was surprised to find that you had actually moved me to tears. I'm so thankful for this start.

oklhdan said...

Yes, it is a start! Now we can continue the work to make it better. Loved your post;)

kenju said...

AMEN! And in case I don't get back here on Thursday, I hope you have a wonderful birthday!! (This was a good present, wasn't it?)

Janie B said...

Teddy would be proud that a start has begun. I have hope that when the economy looks up and people who've been denied health insurance can finally get it, the naysayers will stop complaining and try to take credit for it somehow. That's what usually happens.

Looking to the Stars said...

This was beautiful and well said. Thank you

Word Tosser said...

Betty, I think they all are up there applauding... Roosevelt, Nixon, and the rest who tried so hard to get something going...
Now if we could just deal with truth and not the chicken littles of the world... it would be helpful.
And those states who are suing.(mine included) are wasting taxpayers money... if they have it so good, why didn't they come up with a better idea in the past years.

Word Tosser said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Betty said...

Kay: thank you.

Arkansas Patti: I don't know if it will ever be over.

Margie: I can't believe so many people believe the lies.

Olga: The unhappier the Republicans get about the bill, the happier I get. Call me crazy. lol

Sister-Three: I don't know much about Halter, but I intend to find out.

Darlene: I wish Teddy could have been here to see it, too.

Tincanman, Okldhan, Susie, Looking to the Stars: Thank you

Susie: Well, gosh! I didn't mean to make you cry.

Linda: I want to read his book.

kenju: Thanks. How did you remember my birthday is Wednesday? You're a lot more organized than I am.

Janie B.: Blanche Lincoln has an ad out today stating that she helped to craft the healthcare bill. Liar, liar, pants on fire. Then, why did she vote against it, and also announces that she will vote against Reconciliation?

Word Tosser: They don't have any ideas, good or otherwise.