SICK AND TIRED: Stock Market Surges At Prospect Of Health Care Reform Derailment If Brown Wins


WALL STREET JOURNAL: U.S. stocks climbed Tuesday as health care stocks soared on hopes that Congressional legislation may be subject to new compromises following Tuesday’s special election in Massachusetts. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was recently up 77 points, or 0.7%, at 10687. The Dow’s health-care components led its gainers, with Merck jumping 3% and Pfizer up 2.3%. Tuesday’s rally in health-care stocks came as Massachusetts residents head to the ballot box in a tight special election to replace the late Democratic senator, Edward Kennedy. Democrats stand to lose their filibuster-proof 60-seat majority in the U.S. Senate if Republican candidate Scott Brown wins the close race, paving the way for legislative compromises that could defer more to health care’s private sector. A defeat for the Democrats in a state as liberal as Massachusetts would also underscore the unpopularity of the health legislation and possibly lead some wavering party members to reverse their support ahead of this year’s midterm elections. MORE

RELATED: The morning papers are full of speculation about what the Democrats will do with their health-care bill if Scott Brown, a Republican, wins the senate seat formerly held by Ted Kennedy. Massachusetts is holding a special election for the seat today; if Brown defeats Martha Coakley, a Democrat, the Dems will lose their filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. Coakley backs the health-care overhaul, and Brown opposes it. In Massachusetts, more than 90% of those who back the overhaul support Coakley, and more than 90% of those who oppose the overhaul back Brown. MORE

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