With timing uncertain, focus shifts to Senate
By Ben Pershing
Believe it or not, that was the easy part.
Proponents of health-care reform got their chance to take a brief breath and celebrate Sunday, after a sweeping bill passed the House Saturday night. Now it's on to the next, likely much harder step. So when will the Senate get its work done? In a Rose Garden appearance Sunday, President Obama urged the chamber to ""take up the baton and bring this effort to the finish line." Harry Reid can't pick up any batons until he gets a score for his bill back from the Congressional Budget Office, likely later this week. "The delay could push Senate consideration of the bill until after Thanksgiving, which could in turn make it very difficult for Congress to meet Mr. Obama's goal of signing a health bill into law by the end of this year," the New York Times writes.
Since Reid said he would include the public option in his bill, Politico reports, "Senate action on health care has stopped dead, raising the possibility the Senate won't even begin floor debate until after Thanksgiving. Reid said he's confident the Senate will pass health reform legislation but left open the chance the final bill could slip until early next year." The Washington Times writes that Senate Republicans "vowed to kill the [House] measure unless it is radically altered," as though the Senate was just going to put the House bill up for a vote. The Associated Press offers this similarly misleading headline: "House health care bill has nowhere to go in Senate."
Posted at 8:39 AM ET on Nov 9, 2009
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