By Jo Piazza / current.com / @jopiazza
Sister Simone Campbell was so excited, she could hardly speak at noon on Thursday.
"I'm losing my voice," said the executive director of NETWORK, who is spearheading a multistate bus tour of Catholic nuns. She was talking to Current from a rest stop between Pittsburgh and Harrisburg, Pa.
"I can breathe more deeply now," Sister Campbell said. "I was holding my breath last night. When we got together to pray last night, it was that this would be such a joyous thing for the American people if we as a nation could begin to care for each other again."
The Supreme Court's landmark ruling on the Affordable Care Act, which came down on Thursday morning, was an issue near and dear to the hearts of the nuns who are currently traveling on a bus through 11 states to raise awareness of federal budget cuts in programs that help the poor and working families.
When the ruling came down, the women were sitting in the back of the bus with their computers open and the news streaming live. The first thing they saw was a CNN story reporting that the court had struck down the mandate. A collective boo echoed through the bus.
But then they dashed to the front of the bus where their signal was stronger and saw another report that the mandate had been upheld.
"Our Internet cut out every time we went under a bridge," Campbell said.
The group finally pulled over to a rest stop to be able to watch a live stream of Republican nominee Mitt Romney's reaction to the decision.
"He doesn't understand that business is already benefiting from reduced costs from the Affordable Care Act," Campbell said.
The sisters will be in Harrisburg today and travel to Philadelphia tomorrow.
"What a great time this is to be on the bus," Campbell said. "We were laughing and saying that so much good has happened while we have been on the bus, maybe we should stay. Except I have to do laundry."
Watch Sister Simone Campbell talk with Current's Jennifer Granholm on "The War Room" about Representative Paul Ryan's morally indefensible budget.
- news blog