Last night the US House of Representatives passed the healthcare reform that will ensures health insurance coverage for 95 % of the population. The bill is far from perfect and has been considerably watered out in the process, but yet it is arguably the most important social reform in the USA since President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
The healthcare reform bill was passed by 219 votes to 212, not a single Republican voting in its favour and 34 Democrats voting against the party line. The passing of the bill brings the USA decisively in the direction of a welfare state and means that President Obama has accomplished what presidents back to Theodore Roosevelt more than a century ago did not succeed in doing.
Healthcare reform is the cornerstone of the change Barack Obama promised in his presidential campaign, but has met with fierce opposition and hysterical accusations of communism from the nut-case right and the Republican party, which has traditionally opposed most important social reforms in the history of the USA.
After the havoc wreaked on the country and the world during the dark years of the Bush regime, one may perhaps be allowed to nurture a hope that the American voters will soon consign this destructive party to the dustheap of history.