by Victor Lopez
WEST TEXAS--As of Tuesday, healthcare reform will officially become law and it's definitely sparked some strong opinions in West Texas.
No matter how you feel about the vote personally, even Congressman Mike Conaway agrees, it was an event that will go down in history, "This will be one of those points that, 50 years from now, historians will be writing about."
Unfortunately, that was the only positive comment the Congressman could make about the healthcare reform vote from Sunday night.
"The bill that passed (Sunday) with strictly partisan support, it was bi-partisan opposition because there was Democrats and Republicans voting against it and no Republicans voted for it. I voted against it because it's the wrong path for this country," Conaway said.
It didn't take long to find people from West Texas, who shared Conaway's sentiments and wish there was some way to change the decision.
"I think the Democrats were very wrong and if there is any way for them to repeal it, I would want it to be repealed," Odessa Resident, Johnny Howton, said.
Odessan Phyllis White had this to say, "I'm sure there would have been another way, but I don't know what it would have been. I just didn't like it from the start."
According to Congressman Conaway, there are two 'rays of hope' to turn the decision around. One of them is in the hands of the people themselves.
"The American people have a chance to reclaim the direction that this country is going, by going to the ballot box and electing folks who don't support this healthcare agenda that passed (Sunday) and who want to reign in federal spending, reign in the growth of this government. We have to elect those folks in November to turn this thing around," he explained.
Some people NewsWest 9 spoke to, like Vannessa Cane from Andrews, still aren't convinced, "It's getting to a point where people aren't being heard. These days, you can vote but it doesn't matter what you say or what you think, they're going to do what they want anyway."
Still others, like Dorothy Neve of Odessa, have mixed emotions about it all, "I think everyone should have insurance but I don't approve of the way they went about it."
Congressman Conaway used President Obama's own words against him when he said, "the truth will eventually come out," "The truth about this bill will come out over the next several weeks as people begin to see what it does and doesn't do. There's going to be significant buyer's remorse."
Through it all, some like Odessan Buzz Hurt managed to keep their sense of humor, "Well, it gives me incentive to work hard, not to get sick anymore."
Everyone NewsWest 9 spoke to agreed on one thing, it should be up to the people to decide the type of health care they receive, not the federal government.