New piece at Fox News: Show Me State Sends a Message On Obama’s Health Care Law

My newest piece at Fox News starts this way:

Missouri is a battleground state that is closely contested in almost every national election cycle.
In 2008, only 4,000 votes separated Democratic candidate Barack Obama from Republican rival John McCain.

But Tuesday's 71 to 29 percent blowout vote on Proposition C left no doubt where voters stand as they handed President Obama's health care law a stunning rejection.

The proposition attempts to protect Missourians from the new federal mandate to buy insurance.

It also tries overturning the new federal prohibitions on insurance companies selling insurance directly to people.

The requirement to buy insurance and the prohibition on insurance companies selling directly to the consumer are two regulations that go to the very heart of the new health care law. . . .

UPDATE: Harry Reid thinks that 71 percent of the voters just don't understand what they are doing.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) responded today to a Missouri vote that Republicans call a rebuke to the sweeping new health law by saying voters like the legislation better the more they know more about it.

At issue is Proposition C, a measure on the Missouri ballot Tuesday that seeks to block the government from requiring individuals to buy health insurance, a pillar of President Barack Obama’s new health law. The state referendum is presumably overruled by the federal law, but its passage by a 71-29 margin is being widely cited by Republicans Wednesday as sign that voters reject the health law.

“Missouri sent a clear message to Democrats and the Obama administration that government-run healthcare is a gross overreach of the federal government that needs to be repealed and replaced,” Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele said in a statement.

Reid noted that Tuesday’s turnout was low, at 23%. But his main argument was that people will like the law better the more they see its benefits.

“It’s very obvious that people have a lack of understanding of our health care reform bill,” Reid said. “The more people learn about this bill, the more they like it.” He noted that the health insurance “exchanges,” or marketplaces, will take three years to kick in. . . .

UPDATE 2: Sen. Claire McCaskill says that "message received" but it doesn't mean very much. She has lots of little digs in at Republicans and seemed to discount the vote because of the heavy Republican turnout.

I know that there is a lot of work that we need to do on not just the provisions of the law, but most importantly make sure that everyone knows what is in the law. And I can only be hopeful that as time goes on more and more people realize the positive things that are in the bill. . . . I don't think that it has any impact on the law itself. . . .

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