Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Senate Finance Committee Passes Health Reform Bill

This afternoon, the Senate Finance Committee voted 14-9 in support of the Committee's health reform overhaul bill.

Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME) was the lone Republican to support the bill. She stated that she did not completely support the bill, but felt that urgent action needed to be taken to improve healthcare.

"When history calls, history calls, and I happen to think that the consequences of inaction dictate the urgency of Congress to take every opportunity to demonstrate its capacity to solve the monumental issue of our time," said Snowe in a quote to CQ.

The Senate Finance Committee's bill expands Medicare and creates healthcare insurance marketplaces to provide Americans with greater options for coverage. It does not include the creation of a public plan. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the plan will cost $829 billion over the next ten years.

The Senate Finance Committee's bill must now be reconciled with the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee's bill before it a proposal is sent to the full Senate for a vote. The Senate Finance bill is considered the more moderate of the two plans.

Source: CQ

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