As the House debate on the health insurance exchange bill stretches on, Reps. Kathy Sims, R-Coeur d’Alene, and Joe Palmer, R-Meridian, have debated against HB 248; Reps. Clark Kauffman, R-Filer, and Brandon Hixon, R-Caldwell, have debated in favor. Now just past 5 p.m. Boise time, that brings those debating to 18 against, 17 in favor. The House has 70 members; the bill needs 36 votes, a simple majority, to pass and head over to the Senate.
By the way, the House debate has now officially gone longer than the Senate's six-hour debate, even accounting for its hour lunch break.
Rep. Rick Youngblood, R-Nampa, who debated in favor, said, “Well guess what: Our nose is already under the tent, and we’ve got tar all over us. … It's not going away.” He said, “Ladies and gentlemen, I’m an Idaho native, I’m mad as heck, and I’m not gonna take it any more. Vote yes.”
UPDATE: Others debating against include Reps. Boyle and Denney; and debating in favor, Reps. Youngblood and Perry. That brings the tally to 20 debating against, 19 in favor.
Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.
P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210
Main switchboard: (509) 459-5000 • (800) 338-8801
Newsroom: (509) 459-5400 • (800) 789-0029
Customer service: (800) 338-8801