Even given the hostility of some to any action by Democrats, the reasons for opposition to health care reform are puzzling. The idea that all Americans deserve basic health care has had wide public backing for decades, but the number of uninsured and the costs have risen sharply.
The legislation passed is not the best, but it is not radical, based as it is on an extension of private insurance. It provides some immediate relief from fear of catastrophe; it insures millions more; and it pays for itself, even after the Republicans gutted some important cost-cutting measures.
The first reforms have begun taking effect. Companies cannot cancel your policy after you get sick, and young adults can stay on their parents’ policies until age 26. After state insurance exchanges are set up, most of those now uninsured will be required to buy coverage from private insurers through these exchanges.