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In Late Night Vote, Senate Dems Score a Huge Health Care Victory

December 21, 2009 - by Donny Shaw

At 1:25 this morning, the Senate voted to defeat a Republican filibuster of the Democrats’ health care bill. The vote brings the Senate beyond the last big hurdle remaining for the bill and virtually guarantees that it will see final approval before the Senate leave town on Christmas Eve for recess.

Every single Republican in the Senate this morning voted to sustain the filibuster. To get this far, the Democratic leadership had to make dozen of concessions to their original bill to win the support of all 58 Democrats — and two Independents — in their caucus. The fact that Majority Leader Harry Reid [D, NV] and the others in the leadership managed to accommodate all the conservative Democrats’ concerns with the legislation while not losing a single vote on the left by making the bill too weak is a major victory. Alexander Bolton at The Hill calls it “the biggest victory of his tenure as Senate Democratic leader.” The Obama Administration, which has been intimately involved in the Senate’s negotiations, also scored a huge political victory with this morning’s vote.

You can read the full Senate health care bill here and view a summary of the most recent changes, which will be officially adopted later this week, here. Leave a comment on the bill, find news and blog coverage and much more here.

The Senate now begins a series of procedural votes that is expected to take the Senate until 7 p.m. on Christmas Eve. In case you’re interested, congressional procedure expert David Waldman has posted a good, detailed rundown of what will happen between now and then. The short version, though, is that since the bill exists in the form of an amendment to a House bill, the Republicans have more opportunities than usual to obstruct, and the Democrats will have to run down the clock repeatedly on motions to defeat the filibusters. All the remaining votes until final passage (there will be 6 of them) are expected to be approved strictly along party lines with the same exact roll call results as this morning’s vote.

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donnyshaw 12/22/2009 6:45am
in reply to JSeverson Dec 22, 2009 5:32am

Of those three bills, only H.R. 3400 is a Republican bill. The others are major Democratic health care proposals, the latter being the one they finally ended up passing.

driskells 12/21/2009 6:08am

The problem I have is that the opposing party has yet to propose their own solutions.

JSeverson 12/23/2009 5:08am
in reply to donnyshaw Dec 22, 2009 6:45am

Oops, you’re right. I accidentally grabbed the links to the wrong tracked items. It was a long day.

Tank4u 12/22/2009 3:07pm

As a supporter of Health Care Reform and a even greater supporter of the Public Option my hope is for the Committee to reintroduce the Public Option into the Bill and for the House to push for it. In conclusion, if the final Bill has no Public Option, then the Bill is not true reform and the Dems should be ashamed!

spender 12/21/2009 4:48am

So now the question is will the conference committee try to slip any worthwhile public option into the mix? I wonder who’s going to be on it.

JSeverson 12/22/2009 5:32am
in reply to driskells Dec 21, 2009 6:08am

If you did some research, you’d know that Republicans HAVE offered their own solutions. Along with many amendments to Democrat bills, most or all of which have been voted down, they’ve offered several shorter bills that are logical and actually address the reasons for costs (e.g. interstate competition, tort reform, etc.). Among them are:

bfallen 12/21/2009 11:50am
Link Reply
+ -2

Nancy Pelosi only gets about 150 thousand a year in Lawyers donations to keep her sorry behind in office, Good news, she O U T 2010 and so is the people who pasted this redick HC Bill. If it passes at all. Maybe they can do it New Years Eve at one oclock when all the liberals are good and drunk.

bfallen 12/21/2009 11:47am
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+ -2
in reply to driskells Dec 21, 2009 6:08am

All you have to do is listen to cspan this min. How about some tort reform. How about the kids who choose to smoke unstead of buying HC. Yes indeed you guys who voted this WH in for change is darn sure going to get it, your not smart enough to understand what is happening before your eyes.

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