TITLE CARD: The House of Representatives votes on the amended “Affordable Care Act”.
March 21, 2010
CLERK: On this vote, the yeas are 219, the nays are 212. The motion is adopted.
SHERYL GAY STOLBERG: When the 216th vote comes over, a big cheer erupts.
NEWSCASTER: It’s 219 to 212. No votes from Republicans.
NEWSCASTER: ─all Democrats, no Republicans─
NEWSCASTER: This is a huge victory for this president.
NEWSCASTER: For decades, they’ve been trying to do it. It has now been done.
VALERIE JARRETT: He invited everybody up to the Truman Balcony to celebrate. And this is about 1: 00 o’clock in the morning. And as the crowd started to weed out─ and the president was so happy that night, and was just totally joyful and in a great mood, I asked him, I said, “How does this night compare to election night?” And he looked at me and he said, “Valerie, there’s just no comparison. Election night was just about getting us to a night like this.”
Pres. BARACK OBAMA: Good evening, everybody. This legislation will not fix everything that ails our health care system, but it moves us decisively in the right direction. This is what change looks like.
NARRATOR: It was an historic piece of legislation, but neither the president nor his staff could foresee what the consequences would be.
PETER BAKER: It was obviously a big moment of success for President Obama getting it passed, but it sowed the seeds for years of division and really leaves open the question as to whether or when the country might finally come to accept what he’s done.
NARRATOR: Obama had failed to convince a single Republican in the House or Senate to vote for the bill.
Rep. CATHY McMORRIS RODGERS (R-WA), Republican Leadership: It’s a huge piece of legislation. And it is extremely unusual. When any of the other major programs were passed, signed into law, they were ultimately done with both Democrat and Republican votes. And it’s very─ it’s very telling that not a single Republican in the House or the Senate ultimately voted for the health care bill.
TALK RADIO: Every single Republican senator votes consistently against government-run health care should be a clear indication─
NARRATOR: The vote would fuel the continuing rise of the Tea Party.
TALK RADIO: This is the most brazen assault on a fundamental aspect of our republic ever!
NARRATOR: It all came down to one word, Obamacare.
TALK RADIO: Lies, damn lies. That’s what Obamacare was all about!
DAVID MARANISS, The Washington Post: What happened after it was passed, and because of the way it was passed, it became the symbol of the divide, and the reality of it in many ways. And I don’t think Obama was expecting that.
Rep. MIKE PENCE (R-IN): Welcome back to your nation’s Capitol! The Pelosi-led Congress is about to get a crash course in the consent of the governed.
Rep. RAUL LABRADOR (R-ID)The Affordable Care act became sort of a turning point for the Tea Party movement, where they were just upset now with both parties, and they wanted to come to Washington and change everything that was happening in Washington, D.C.