October 26, 2009

Senate Healthcare Bill to Include Public Option

Reid says states will be allowed to opt out

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In a major turnaround, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (R-Nevada) announced Monday, October 26, that he plans to bring a healthcare bill to the Senate floor that includes a public option that features an "opt out" clause, allowing states to choose if they want to participate.

According to published reports, Reid made the decision without commitments of support from 60 senators, meaning that he wouldn't have the votes to overcome any filibuster on the measure by Republicans.

Those published reports also quoted an aide to Reid as calling the move a "risky strategy." However, the aide said because Reid believes including the public option is the right approach, the senator is "cautiously optimistic he can get the votes necessary."

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