TWAS THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS
By Ron Pollack
Executive Director, Families USA
Twas the night before Christmas and all through the Senate
The Democrats were working for a fundamental tenet:
All Americans should have health care at a reasonable price
By forcing insurance companies to finally play nice.
The reform bill they pushed took some very strong positions,
Like no one denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions.
Premiums, in the future, would need to be fair
With no differences for women and people needing care.
The Democrats made sure that the bill they designed
Would give folks 'cross the nation some real peace of mind.
Health care would not end if jobs changed or were lost
As all could choose health plans at an affordable cost.
For seniors needing medicines, the bill had much to extol:
It plugged gaps in their coverage, like the bad "doughnut hole."
And for empty-nesting parents, there was reason to rejoice
Kids could keep family coverage, this was now a parent's choice.
But all Republicans scoffed and persistently said "no"
With the sometimes exception of their colleague, Ms. Snowe.
With obstructions and filibusters, they tried every delay
To stop the bill and kill reform, before Christmas day.
So Leader Reid called his colleagues from left and from right,
For all 60 to join him, lest they lose this big fight.
Now Nelson, now Lincoln, now Franken and Wyden,
On Lieberman, on Bingaman, on Harkin and Cardin.
Christmas eve turned to night, and when the votes were all counted,
The filibusters and obstructions were completely surmounted.
The vote was inspired by the memory of Ted
Who'd applaud the victory for the cause he had led.
The work isn't over, there's much yet to be done
The Senate and the House bills must be merged into one.
But the vote on Christmas eve offers reason to cheer
'Cause health care reform will pass in the new year.
So call your fine leaders, and let your voice be heard,
With letters and emails, we must spread the word.
Our message is clear, and it shines a bright light.
"Health care coverage for all, and for all it's our right."
Thanks to your tireless dedication and hard work, the health care justice movement continues to advance. May your holidays be filled with much health and happiness.