Pres. Obama delivers a statement to the nation following the vote in the House of Representatives on health care reform from the East Room of the White House. (PHOTO CREDIT: JIM WATSON/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
Perhaps gloating just a little, in the wake of the passage of health care reform yesterday, President Obama said, "This is what change looks like."
There were serious doubts that he could pull it off... but after more than a year of an often bitter debate, the health care sausage is made.
Whether you support it or not - this bill is a big deal... with some likening it to the passage of Social Security and Medicare.
David Sanger stated in the New York Times, "Mr. Obama proved he was willing to fight for something that moved him to his core... he showed that when he was finally committed to throwing all his political capital onto the table, he could win, if by the narrowest of margins."
The president succeeded where many others failed... but the real question is, at what cost?
For starters - the president has likely lost for good, his campaign promises of a post-partisan Washington.
Consider that for the first time in modern history a major bill passed without one single Republican vote. Even LBJ got almost half of House Republicans to sign on to Medicare in 1965.
Some top Republicans are already calling for a repeal of health care reform. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich says the legislation "will not stand"... and that this is only the "beginning of the fight."
Gingrich insists the 2010 and 2012 elections will be an opportunity to "save America from a left-wing machine of unparalleled corruption, arrogance and cynicism."
If you think it's ugly now - and it is - just wait.
For his part, the president acknowledges he doesn't know what the political future will bring - but insists the legislation is "a victory for common sense."
Here’s my question to you: What will passing health care reform mean for President Obama?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Phil from Long Beach, California writes:
It means that he will go down in history as the president that presided over the financial collapse and ultimate destruction of America. With the stroke of a pen, our credit rating drops, our debt goes up, our liberty erodes, our taxes pile even higher and we ensure yet another dependent underclass.
Passing health care reform means Obama will be a two-term president. Once the dust settles, the enormity of this accomplishment will be clear, and Obama will be perceived as one who stood up for the little guy against the carnivorous insurance companies and their Republican water-carriers.
He will be returning home four years earlier than he originally planned.
This is a bad bill the majority of the people did not want that was passed in a sleazy way. Do you really feel that is what change should look like? This president may be the most divisive president of my lifetime. The anger between people has come from him pushing his agenda down our throat in a deplorable way.
Omar in Iowa writes:
This passing is a moral victory for this entire country. For too long, this country's policies have pitted the haves versus the have-nots. The poor, the degraded, the desperate, the demoralized, the victimized have for too long not had a "majority" of Congress who would willingly and openly fight for their rights and freedoms, those both obligated and protected by our Constitution.
It means that the patients I see, who that insurance companies refuse, will be cared for. It is funny, not one Republican had a friend or family member bankrupted by illness. I think insurance companies line too many of their pockets to see clearly.
It means that my 2 sons will have to live with a little less, so that I can support someone else's family as well as my own. When they are old enough to understand, I will explain to them why that makes me bitter.