Healthcare bill will most benefit those who did not vote for it

on March 22, 2010

After much deliberation, fighting, infighting and some rather intense partisan antics, the House passed the health care reform bill Sunday. It is hard to think of a subject more controversial in American society today and the voting behind the bill proves it. If you have any interest in the subject, you can download the workbook and use the data to see the story from your own point of view.


Perhaps the most interesting story in the passing of the bill is illustrated in these two maps. The map on the left shows the percentage of people who do not have health insurance in each state; clearly the South and West are trailing the East and North. However, the map at the right shows that almost no representatives from the South and Midwest voted for the bill. In other words, representatives from the South were so strongly opposed to the bill that they voted against it, although their constituents would benefit the most. Similarly, Northeastern representatives voted for the bill though the vast majority of their constituents will gain little from the expanded coverage. It would seem that this vote (for both parties) was as much a statement of ideology as a vote for or against expanded health care.

What we like about this viz

Color: Two color scales can be confusing but these ones were chosen not to clash... and it works!

Tooltips (pop-ups): Detailed descriptions of fields help viewers understand without adding clutter.

Thanks to the Washington Post for the data.