Rep. Mike Michaud, D-Maine, says he supports the health care overhaul plan.

“While the bill is not perfect, it is an important first step toward fixing our broken and unsustainable health care system,” he says

Michaud’s decision Sunday to support the bill came two days after Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-Maine, announced that she also was supporting the health care overhaul.

Michaud said he thoroughly reviewed the bill’s language. He calls it “a vast improvement to the status quo of skyrocketing premiums that millions of families and small businesses currently face.”

Pingree addressed the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives for two minutes Sunday night, urging her colleages to support reform of the nation’s health care system.

Pingree, who will vote in support of health care reform, said a small business owner, a married couple and a cardiac patient, all from Maine, wrote to her to say that they could no longer afford the costs of health care insurance.

Her constituents told Pingree that Anthem’s proposed 23 percent rate increase would make it impossible to provide health insurance for employees, that their income was not high enough to cover the cost of co-pays and prescription medicine, and that in the case of the heart patient he lost everything because he was out of work.

“Those people wrote to me from Maine, but the stories are told every day in every state – Americans are denied insurance, have their coverage canceled or find themselves bankrupt just because they got sick,” Pingree said. “Today we will change that with our vote. Today our vote will start to end the worst practices of the insurance companies, like denying coverage for pre-existing conditions or canceling your policy when you get sick.”


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