Some Democrats are hoping the death of Senator Edward Kennedy might serve as a rallying point to help push ahead action on health care legislation. Iowa Congressman Steve King, a Republican from Kiron has been critical of the health care bill, and says he’s not sure what impact Kennedy’s death will have.
King says Democrats obviously think it will make a difference, or they wouldn’t be talking about possibly naming the health care bill in honor of Kennedy, but he doesn’t know how it will play out in the long run. King says even though he was on the other side of the aisle from Kennedy, he respects the commitment, effort and deep conviction Kennedy brought to the job.
King says the loss of Kennedy will leave a void in the Democratic effort to push the health care issue. King says Kennedy could give a speech that was prepared or extemporaneously, that was compelling and many times emotional.
"I’ve often wished we had people that had that ability that are on our side of this argument," King says, "but if they use his name to try to advance something that I fear will become socialized medicine, I think it may leave a legacy for Teddy Kennedy that they don’t want to leave and I’d caution against that if I were inside the doors making the decisions where they are."
King said Thursday he would not run for governor so he can continue to focus on national issues like health care.