Baucus Says Bill Score Could Come Wednesday
Roll Call reports that Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus said today that he could receive on Wednesday the final Congressional Budget Office cost estimate of the latest version of his panel's health reform bill. "Baucus declined to predict how long Finance members might take to review the revised CBO score before voting on the bill, first priced at $900 billion. Finance members are expected to approve package sometime later this week."
In the meantime, Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe said Tuesday that she hasn't ruled out supporting the bill, Roll Call reports. But she also "refused to speculate on her role in Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's (D-Nev.) merger of the Finance bill with a measure passed by the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee." She said her involvement in "negotiations with Democratic leaders and the White House depends on their flexibility" (Drucker and Pierce, 10/6).
The Hill reports that Republican Sen. Mike Crapo of Idaho said Democrats have a "very good chance" of passing health care reform and that they have a good chance of passing a bill under reconciliation. "Crapo said that he credited the August recess protests with having created enough of an impression among his colleagues for them to have voted down public option amendments in the Senate Finance Committee, but he worried the protests haven't had enough of an impact as the debate moves forward" (O'Brien, 10/6).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.