After a year of heated national debate and decades of failed attempts to achieve universal health coverage, it was all coming down to one moment in the US House. The Democrats needed every vote they could get.
Smart money said the Massachusetts delegation was a lock. All 10 members had supported an earlier version that narrowly passed the House. They hailed from the same state that had crafted the landmark law which provided the template for health care reform, the home of the late senator Edward M. Kennedy, who made universal coverage his life’s cause.