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Obama stays firm on health despite shock poll defeat

THE victory of a Republican candidate in the race for a United States Senate seat in Massachusetts yesterday stunned President Obama’s Democratic Party and left the White House assessing the implications for its domestic policy agenda.

His victory over the Democratic candidate, Martha Coakley, means the Republicans now have enough Senate votes to impede the President’s plans to reform healthcare

However, Obama yesterday insisted he would persist with his healthcare reforms despite the defeat. Republican Scott Brown, who won the seat, said he had tapped into mounting aggravation among voters. Brown will be Massachusetts’ first Republican senator since 1972.