View Full Version : Health-bill Foes Protest at Richmond Offices of Warner, Webb

11-22-2009, 10:23 PM
RICHMOND, Va. -- Both of Virginia's U.S. senators say they will vote to allow debate on the Senate version of health-care overhaul legislation, but neither has committed to voting for the actual bill.

Sen. Mark R. Warner, D-Va., got an earful on the subject from a group of small-business owners in Carytown yesterday while protesters rallied outside Warner and Sen. Jim Webb's Richmond offices.

About 100 people, at both locations combined, said they oppose proposed health-care reform, a version of which recently passed the House of Representatives by a narrow margin. The Senate's version is facing an important test vote today with a must-pass procedural measure allowing the debate to proceed.The full Senate will have a chance to amend the bill once it's on the floor.

In the meeting with Warner organized by the Virginia Retail Federation, John D. Whitlock, chairman of The Whitlock Group, urged Warner to vote against moving the bill forward, not to mention the legislation itself.Warner, who said he wants to see more cost containment in the Senate's legislation before he can support it, responded that he hasn't committed to vote for the bill. "If it doesn't improve, chances are I'm not going to vote for it," he said.

But he added that he's spent 20 years working on health care, including in his role as a governor and now senator. He stressed the costs of inaction."You guys hired me. At the end of the day, if I don't perform, don't rehire me. You'll have that chance to make the judgment," Warner said. "I think the choice of doing nothing is a financial disaster."