House okays repeal of health law

In a mostly symbolic move, the GOP-led House of Representatives voted to repeal President Obama's signature healthcare reform law, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The 245-189 vote for a repeal helped Republicans make good on a campaign promise to push for a repeal. Three Democrats also sided with the Republican caucus, down from 34 House Democrats who voted against the law in March 2010.

The vote is mostly for show, because in actuality, the repeal won't go anywhere, National Public Radio reports. The Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has already said he would not allow the repeal bill on the Senate floor."The Republicans have to understand that the healthcare bill is not going to be repealed," he told NPR.

But the Democrats were not sorry to see the push for a repeal in the House. "We welcome, in a certain sense, their attempt to repeal [the law] because it gives us a second chance to make a first impression," Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said on "Meet the Press."

The day before the vote, House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) noted his party didn't do a good enough job selling the public on the benefits of the healthcare reform.

In a statement released by the Department of Health and Human Services, Secretary Kathleen Sebelius noted that she has seen firsthand how the law has helped Americans. "Repealing the Affordable Care Act would raise health insurance costs for families, add to our federal deficit, put control back in the hands of insurance companies, and take away the freedom and health security being realized by millions of Americans," she said. "That would be the wrong direction for our country, and would be disastrous for the health and well-being of American families."

To learn more:
- here's the HHS press release
- read the Wall Street Journal story
- read the Reuters story
- here's the NPR transcript
- read the Washington Post article

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