The Hunt for Health Care Votes: Democrats to Watch

Updated March 21, 8:20 p.m. ET

Today is the day the clock starts running. After Democrats posted their health bill online this afternoon, there is a 72-hour countdown until House Democrats bring it up for a vote Sunday afternoon. The Democrats' whip team will be busy in that 72 hours furiously counting the votes, twisting arms and convincing some of their skeptical members to support the health care bill.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi can only afford to lose 37 Democrats if every Republican votes against the bill. CBS News will be measuring the whip team's progress.

Here's who to watch:

Vulnerable Democrats: Thirty-seven members who are either on the fence, or a firm no, represent districts that will be the most competitive this November according to a CBS News analysis. This vote on health care could determine whether they have a job next year.

Anti-abortion Democrats: Watch Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) who has said he has twelve members who would vote against the health care bill if the Senate abortion language is not changed to make sure no federal funds pay for abortions.

Blue Dogs: Of the thirty-nine Democrats who voted against the House health care bill last November, twenty-six were fiscally conservative Blue Dogs. The preliminary Congressional Budget Office estimate that leaked this morning says that the latest bill would reduce the deficit by $130 billion in the first decade and $1.2 trillion in the second. That's good leverage for Democratic leadership to use on the Blue Dogs.

Congressional Hispanic Caucus members: Rep. Luis Guttierez (D-Ill.) had said that he would not vote for the health care bill, but then changed his mind and said he would support it on Thursday afternoon. He was reticent because the Senate language would not allow illegal immigrants to purchase health insurance in the exchanges, even if they pay completely with their own money. Watch to see what other Congressional Hispanic Caucus members decide.

Retirees: Watch Reps. John Tanner (D-Tenn.), Bart Gordon (D-Tenn.) and Brian Baird (D-Wash.). They all voted against the House health care bill in November, but have announced since that they will retire at the end of this year. Without the pressure of reelection, all three could change their votes to yes.

Update: Bart Gordon released a statement Thursday afternoon saying he would vote for the bill.

Republican Rep. Rep. Anh "Joseph" Cao: He was the only Republican to vote for the House health care bill in November. Local paper in Louisiana reports that President Obama asked him to take another look and he agreed to take another look.

Update: Cao told CNN on Friday afternoon that he is a "firm no" unless the abortion language is changed.

Dem Health Care Bill Pegged at $940B Over 10 Years
Obama Deploys Personal Presidential Touch in Health Care Push
Washington Unplugged: Jill Jackson and Mark Knoller on the Final Push
CBSNews.com Special Report: Health Care

Here is a list of firm no's and folks on the fence:

FIRM NO DEMOCRATS (30):

1. Rep. Jim Marshall (D-Ga.)
2. Rep. Artur Davis (D-Ala.)
3. Rep. Bobby Bright (D-Ala.)
4. Rep. Mike Ross (D-Ark.)
5. Rep. Dan Boren (D-Okla.)
6. Rep. Ben Chandler (D-K.Y.)
7. Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (D-S.D.)
8. Rep. Heath Shuler (D-N.C.)
9. Rep. Chet Edwards (D-Tex.)
10. Rep. Gene Taylor (D-Miss.)
11. Rep. Tim Holden (D-Pa.)
12. Rep. Larry Kissell (D-N.C.)
13. Rep. Frank Kratovil (D-Md.)
14. Rep. Mike McMahon (D-N.Y.)
15. Rep. Walt Minnick (D-Idaho)
16. Rep. Mike McIntyre (D-N.C.) - Voted yes on the House Bill in November
17. Rep. Ike Skelton (D-Mo.)
18. Rep. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.)
19. Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-Mass.) - Voted yes on the House Bill in November
20. Rep. Michael Arcuri (D-N.Y.) - Voted yes on the House Bill in November
21. Rep. Charles Melancon (D-La.)
22. Rep. Travis Childers(D-Miss.)
23. Rep. John Adler (D-N.J.)
24. Rep. Jason Altmire (D-Pa.)
25. Rep. Harry Teague (D-N.M.)
26. Rep. John Barrow (D-Ga.)
27. Rep. Zack Space (D-Ohio)
28. Rep. Jim Matheson (D-Utah)
29. Rep. Glenn Nye (D-Va.)
30. Rep. John Tanner (D-Tenn.)
31. Rep. Marion Berry (D-Ark.)


UNDECIDED DEMOCRATS (4):

note: This list includes representatives who have announced firm support or opposition to the bill since this was first posted. Additional Democrats have also been added to the list since the first posting.

Rep Harry Mitchell (D-Ariz)
Arizona:

Rep. Harry Mitchell, at left, (Voted yes on the House bill): CBS News calls Mitchell's district one of the most competitive in 2010.

Update: Mitchell put out a statement saying he will vote for the bill.

Arkansas:

Rep. Marion Berry (Voted yes on the House bill): Voted in the budget committee to move the bill to the Rules Committee. Retiring.

Update: Berry will vote no

California:

Rep. Jerry McNerney (Voted yes on the House bill): Tells local San Francisco blog that he's undecided. Does not think the bill goes far enough to cover the uninsured.

Update: He told local press he will support the bill

Rep. Jim Costa (Voted yes on the House bill): Local station says he's undecided.

Rep. Dennis Cardoza (Voted yes on the House bill): An aide confirms he is undecided.

Update: Costa and Cardoza will support the bill, the Fresno Bee reports.

Colorado:

Rep. Betsy Markey (Voted no on the House bill): Her district was won by John McCain in 2008. Has not committed one way or another, but 2010 will be a tough contest for Markey.

Update: CBS News has confirmed that Markey will vote in favor of the bill.

Florida:

Rep. Allen Boyd (Voted no on the House bill): Almost assuredly no again, but has not come out and said it.3

Update: Boyd said Friday that he would support the bill.

Rep. Suzanne Kosmas (Voted no on the House bill): Has met privately with President Obama at the White House.

Update: The White House said Friday that Kosmas will support the bill.

Georgia:

Rep. Sanford Bishop (Voted yes on the House bill): Wants strict abortion language

Rep. John Barrow (Voted no on the House bill): Likely no again, but tells local paper he is undecided.

Update: Bishop will vote "yes" and Barrow will vote "no," the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

Illinois:

Rep. Dan Lipinski (Voted yes on the House bill): Will be no unless they change the Senate abortion language.

Rep. Jerry Costello (Voted yes on the House bill): Waiting to see the changes to the Senate bill.

Rep. Melissa Bean (Voted yes on the House bill): Staff says wants a chance to read the bill and the CBO score first.

Update: Bean released a statement Saturday saying she will vote for the bill.

Rep. Bobby Rush (Voted yes on the House bill): Staff says he is undecided.

Update: He will vote yes

Rep. Brad Ellsworth (D-Ind.)
Indiana:

Rep. Joe Donnelly (Voted yes on the House bill): Will vote no without stricter language on abortion.

Update: Donnelly announced he would support the bill during a news conference on Sunday afternoon.

Rep. Brad Ellsworth, at left, (Voted yes on the House bill): Wants strict abortion language and is running for Senate.

Update: The White House said Friday that Ellsworth will support the bill.

Rep. Baron Hill (Voted yes on the House bill): Wants strict abortion language.

Update: Hill released a statement Saturday saying he will vote for the bill.

Louisiana:

Rep. Charles Melancon (Voted no on the House bill): Running for Senate. Likely still a no.

Update: CBS News has now confirmed Melancon will vote against the bill.

Massachusetts:

Rep. Michael Capuano (Voted yes on the House bill): Tells Boston Herald that he's "not there yet."

Update: Capuano told CBS News he will vote for the bill.

Rep. Stephen Lynch (Voted yes on the House bill): Wants to see final language.

Update: Stephen Lynch has told CBS News that he is now a no vote for the bill.

Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.)
Michigan:

Rep. Bart Stupak, at left, (Voted yes on the House bill): He's a no unless abortion language is more strict.

Update: Stupak held a news conference on Sunday afternoon saying he would support the bill after the White House released language of an executive order.

Rep. Mark Schauer (Voted yes on the House bill): Tells the Detroit News that he's waiting to see final language.

Update: Schauer now says he will support the bill

Rep. Gary Peters (Voted yes on the House bill): Tells the Detroit News he wants to see the cost.

Update: Peters will support the bill

Mississippi:

Rep. Travis Childers (Voted no on the House bill): Very likely a no again.

Update: Childers said in a statement on Friday that he will vote against the bill.

Nevada:

Rep. Dina Titus (Voted yes on the House bill): Tells local radio station that she is undecided.

Updated: Titus told CBS News on Friday she will support the bill.

New Jersey:

Rep. John Adler (Voted no on the House bill): Tells local paper that he will vote no if the final bill does not do more to control cost.

Update: Local paper reports that Adler will vote against the bill.

New Mexico:

Rep. Harry Teague (Voted no on the House bill): Waiting for language.

Update: Citing cost concerns, Teague said he will vote against the bill, the New Mexico Independent reports.

New York:

Rep. Tim Bishop (Voted yes on the House bill): Voted in the budget committee to move the bill to the rules committee

Update: Bishop told CBS News he would support the bill.

Rep. Michael Arcuri (Voted yes on the House bill): Wants to see the final language.

Update: Arcuri put out a statement Thursday night saying he would vote no.

Rep. Bill Owens (Voted yes on the House bill): Tells local paper that he is undecided

Updated: Owens released a statement saying he will vote "yes."

North Carolina:

Rep. Bob Etheridge (Voted yes on the House bill): Local Web site says he's still undecided.

Update: Etheridge will vote "yes," the News Observer reports.

North Dakota:

Rep. Earl Pomeroy (Voted yes on the House bill): Concerned about Senate abortion language and costs. Democrats just gave him the plum job of the social security subcommittee on Ways and Means after Rangel was forced to step down and the committee reorganized. Possibly a sweetener.

  • Note: Pomeroy spokesman Brenden Timpe points out that Pomeroy getting the seat on the Social Security Subcommittee was completely normal since he was next in the line of succession.

Update: Pomeroy will vote yes

Ohio:

Rep. John Boccieri (Voted no on the House bill): He skipped Mr. Obama's event in Ohio even though he was invited by the White House. Check out this article on a plane flying overhead in Canton with a banner that read "Tell Rep. Boccieri no abortion funding."

Update: Boccieri announced on Friday morning that he would support the bill.

Rep. Betty Sutton (Voted yes on the House bill): Wants to see the bill. Mr. Obama's event Monday was in her district.

Update: Sutton told the Cleveland Plain Dealer she will support the bill.

Rep. Marcy Kaptur (Voted yes on the House bill): Concerns with abortion funding and explaining the bill to constituents so they understand what's in it.

Update: Democratic leadership says she will vote for the bill

Rep. Steve Driehaus (Voted yes on the House bill): Now considered a likely no. Wants stricter abortion language.

Update: Driehaus announced he would support the bill during a news conference on Sunday afternoon.

Rep. Zack Space (Voted yes on the House bill): Does not like senate bill and wants to see language.

Update: Space will vote "no," according to a local news report.

Oregon:

Rep. Kurt Schrader (Voted yes on the House bill): On CBS News list of most competitive races.

Update: Local press says he will vote for the bill

Rep. Pete DeFazio (Voted yes on the House bill): Says he is a no until some regional disparity problem is fixed.

Update: DeFazio will vote for the bill.

Rep. Jason Altmire (D-Pa.)
Pennsylvania:

Rep. Jason Altmire, at left, (Voted no on the House bill): He has always liked the Senate bill more than the House bill because he says it does more to control costs. Tells CBS that he's "had conversations with president, and some cabinet secretaries and others at the White House." Tells local paper that he's talked to Mr. Obama 3 times. Altmire also tells CBS that he is against using a self-executing rule to deem the Senate bill passed without a straight up or down vote on it. 

Update: CBS Affiliate reports Friday afternoon that Altmire will vote against the bill.

Rep. Nancy Dahlkemper (Voted yes on the House bill): Depends on abortion language and wants to read the final bill

Update: Dahlkemper announced she would support the bill during a news conference on Sunday afternoon.

Rep. Chris Carney (Voted yes on the House bill): Has concerns about Senate abortion language.

Update: Carney released a statement Saturday saying he will vote for the bill.

Rep. Paul Kanjorski (Voted Yes on the House bill): Staffers tell CBS he is still undecided.

Update: He will support the bill

Tennessee:

Rep. Bart Gordon, at left, (Voted no on the House bill): Possibly a yes now that he is retiring. Spokesman tells the Tennessean that he wants to see final language. Gordon talked to reporters in the Speaker's lobby the other night and defended using the self-executing rule to deem the Senate bill passed saying that it's just as legitimate a rule as the filibuster so it can be used. Gordon's top concern is controlling costs.

Update: Bart Gordon released a statement Thursday afternoon saying he would support the bill.

Rep. Lincoln Davis (Voted no on the House bill): Very likely no again. Has not told local papers which way he will vote.

Rep. John Tanner (Voted no on the House bill): He's retiring though so leadership is pushing on him.

Update: Tanner will vote against the bill

Rep. Jim Cooper (Voted yes on the House bill): His aide says that he's reading the bill.

Update: Cooper released a statement Sunday saying he would vote for the bill

Texas:

Rep. Henry Cuellar (Voted Yes on the House bill): Wants stricter abortion language.

Update: Cuellar released a statement Saturday saying he will vote for the bill.

Rep. Solomon Ortiz (Voted yes on the House bill): Dallas Morning News reports that he is undecided.

Update: Ortiz released a statement on Saturday saying he would support the bill.

Rep. Ciro Rodrigues (Voted yes on the House bill): Dallas Morning News reports that he is undecided.

Update: Rodrigues will vote for the bill.

Utah:

Rep. Jim Matheson (Voted no in Novembet): President Obama offered his brother a U.S. Circuit Judge post two weeks ago. Sweetener?

Update: Matheson told the Salt Lake Tribune he would not support the bill.

Virginia:

Rep. Rick Boucher (Voted no on the House bill): Some Republicans expect him to be a no again. He has not committed either way.

Rep. Glenn Nye (Voted no on the House bill): CBS News lists the district as one of the most competitive in 2010.

Update: Nye says he will vote against the bill.

Rep. Tom Perriello (Voted yes on the House bill): CBS News lists this freshman's district as one of the most competitive in 2010. He has defended the Senate abortion language to Hill media outlets.

Update: The White House said Friday that Perriello will support the bill.

Rep. Gerry Connolly (Voted yes on the House bill): Aide tells CBS News he is still undecided.

Update: Connolly released a statement Saturday saying he will vote for the bill.

Washington:

Rep. Brian Baird (Voted no on the House bill): Maybe a yes now that he's retiring tells McClatchy Newspapers that he needs to see the actual language before he makes up his mind.

Update: Baird said in a statement Sunday that he will support the bill

West Virginia:

Rep. Alan Mollohan (Voted yes on the House bill): CBS news calls this seat one of the most competitive for 2010.

Update: Mollohan announced he would support the bill during a news conference on Sunday afternoon.

Rep. Nick Rahall (Voted yes on the House bill): Tells local paper that he can't support the bill without making the Senate abortion language more strict.

Update: Rahall announced he would support the bill during a news conference on Sunday afternoon.

Wisconsin:

Rep. Ron Kind (Voted yes on the House bill): He voted no in the budget committee this past Monday to move the reconciliation package to the rules committee. Has met with Mr. Obama. Wants more Medicare reimbursement reform for hospitals according to a local blog.

Update: Kind will vote for the bill.


More Coverage of the Health Care Reform Debate:

Dem Health Care Bill Pegged at $940B Over 10 Years
Washington Unplugged: Nancy Cordes on the Final Countdown
Dueling News Conferences
Obama Cancels Foreign Trip for Health Care Push
GOP Plots Ways to Fight Health Care
Temperature Rising for Health Care Votes
Health Care Passage Plan Unconstitutional?
Obama Pushes Health Care Bill in Combative Fox Interview
Pelosi: Health Care Bill "Best Initiative" for the Economy
Republicans Have Used "Slaughter Solution" Many Times
Stupak's Life a "Living Hell" because of Abortion Position
Obama's Health Care Plan: What Do You Think?
CBSNews.com Special Report: Health Care


(CBS)
Jill Jackson is a CBS News Capitol Hill Producer. You can read more of her posts in Hotsheet here. You can also follow her on Twitter.

  • Jill Jackson On Twitter»

    Jill Jackson is a CBS News senior political producer.

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