The House of Representatives failed to override President Bush’s veto of the S-CHIP bill today. The bill would have provided health insurance for 3.8 million low income kids and preserved insurance for the more than 6 million already covered under the plan. The cost would have been paid for by increased tobacco taxes.

I first found out about the vote result via an e-mail from Rep. Ed Perlmutter’s office. His office sent out the vote tally with his comment well before before the news hit the wire services. His comments:

The House voted 273 to 156 to override the veto, however this was 16 votes short of the 2/3 necessary to override the President’s veto and pass this bill into law.

“I am disappointed the President is playing politics with our children’s health”, said Perlmutter. “As we saw with the vote on stem cell research, the President and many Republicans reject the will of the majority of Americans and the hopes and promise that basic health care services can provide to our children. Be assured, I will continue to fight to keep kids from hardworking American families .”

Rep. Diana DeGette placed her comments in a letter
to the editor
of the Rocky Mountain News.

The bipartisan SCHIP compromise bill is not an entitlement for the middle class. Rather, it’s a block grant focusing on providing basic health care coverage to the poorest children in America.

It is shameful to deny health care to the poorest of America’s kids, including 116,000 kids in Colorado, while we spend millions of dollars on Iraqi health care. President Bush and his Republican colleagues should wise up and make the children of America a top priority.

How did Colorado’s other Congresspersons vote? Here’s the tally.

  • Voting to override the veto: Ed Perlmutter, Diana DeGette, Mark Udall and John Salazar
  • Voting against S-CHIP expansion: Tom Tancredo, Marilyn Musgrave, Doug Lamborn