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Conservative Democrats Signal They Won't Block Public Option

Saturday, October 24, 2009

By John Byrne
The Raw Story

UPDATE: A Huffington Post report Friday indicates that Democrats believe they are one or two votes shy of having a filibuster-proof majority to pass a public health insurance option.

More here. The names of those who aren't on board for a filibuster is unknown, but at least one senator's office -- that of Florida Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL), wouldn't say how the senator will vote.

Support for including some version of a public option in the Senate's version of a healthcare overhaul appears to be solider than initially believed.

In a series of comments that have received little attention, conservative Democratic senators -- even those who've publicly said they oppose a public option -- say they are unlikely to join a Republican filibuster to block it. Under Senate rules, Democrats would need to convince 60 members to support the ability to vote on healthcare legislation with the public option (cloture), and then just 51 to pass it.

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) told a reporter earlier this week that she wouldn't join Republicans in voting against cloture....(Remainder.)



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