Friday, December 19, 2008

Waxman Puts Dingell In His Place

Henry Waxman is one of the most awesome Democrats in the House, and when he won a contentious vote to replace Michigan's John Dingell as the chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, it was a big win for the environment. Dingell's from Michigan, and had opposed curbs on fossil fuel use that the auto industry didn't like.

The Crypt reports that
Waxman continues to be awesome by making nice with Dingell and putting him in charge of something where he's unambiguously on the right side -- health care reform:
By granting Dingell a role as "the lead sponsor" of whatever national health care legislation the committee considers, Waxman is giving the Dean of the House the chance to cap his historic career by realizing his father's goal of universal health care coverage - Dingell's father, a former House member, first introduced legislation creating national health insurance in 1943.
Now, I don't know how big a role the Energy and Commerce Committee has on health care, and the real action is in the Senate anyway. But this is a sweet way for things to go. Update: the committee has jurisdiction over national health insurance.


corvus said...

A gentleman and a badass!

ungen: a thick paste used as a common food source among medieval peasants, though also useful as a coagulant in carpentry

Anonymous said...

Not only did Dingell's father introduce the first NHC bill, my understanding is for years after his election in 1956 he introduced the same bill as HR1, so I think this is a tribute not only to Dingell's dad but also to his own commitment to the issue.

BruceMcF said...

You'd think that Energy and Commerce would have a role in any serious Health Care reform, as a lot of the leverage over the big health insurance companies is the power to regulate interstate commerce.

Anonymous said...


If you go to the Energy and Commerce website and check under subcommittee jurisdictions, you will find that

"The Subcommittee on Health has jurisdiction over public health and quarantine; hospital construction; mental health and research; biomedical programs and health protection in general, including Medicaid and national health insurance; Food and drugs; and, Drug abuse."

Neil Sinhababu said...

Wow, thanks Vadranor.

Anonymous said...

Waxman is really cool, but I can't be the only person who thinks he looks really - really - funny.

Anonymous said...

"Waxman is really cool, but I can't be the only person who thinks he looks really - really - funny."

His entire head is actually made out of wax. That way, they're able to use a standard Mr. Potato Head mustache on him.

But whatever works.

There seems a decent chance we're actually going to seize the opportunity here...

Neil Sinhababu said...

Yeah, Waxman looks really weird. Not that losing the mustache would make him a hit with the ladies or anything, but I think it'd be a genuine step up.