Mass. Vote Wasn't About Health Care

Bay State has already got health care reform, writes Steven Pearlstein
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 20, 2010 3:50 AM CST
A Scott Brown supporter waves to drivers passing below on the Massachusetts Turnpike in Newton, Mass. yesterday.   (AP Photo/Bill Sikes)

(Newser) – The Democrats' Bay State shocker is bad news for health care reform but it certainly wasn't a referendum on it, writes Steven Pearlstein. Massachusetts voters have a long history of electing Republican governors and senators to offset the Democratic-dominated state legislature so it's no surprise that they chose Scott Brown now when they—like voters almost everywhere—are grumpy over the lousy economy and local issues, Pearlstein writes in the Washington Post.

Attempts by the media to portray the Massachusetts race as a health care showdown overlook the fact that the state has already adopted a health care reform plan very similar to the one before Congress, and it has broad support from both the public and businesses. For the Democrats, Pearlstein writes, the danger now "is not that they will ignore the election returns, but that they will misread them and sound a premature retreat from a historic and game-changing opportunity."

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