5:38 am March 22, 2010, by Henry Unger
The big story of the day is health reform.
A landmark health care bill is headed to President Barack Obama for his signature as Congress takes the final steps in Democrats’ improbable and history-making push for near-universal medical coverage, Associated Press writes.
On the cusp of succeeding where numerous past congresses and administrations have failed, jubilant House Democrats voted 219-212 late Sunday to send legislation to Obama that would extend coverage to 32 million uninsured Americans, reduce deficits and ban insurance company practices such as denying coverage to people with pre-existing medical conditions, AP reports.
“This is what change looks like,” Obama said later in televised remarks that stirred memories of his 2008 campaign promise of “change we can believe in.”
A companion package making a series of changes sought by House Democrats to the larger bill, which already passed the Senate, was approved 220-211. The fix-it bill will now go to the Senate, where debate is expected to begin as early as Tuesday. Senate Democrats hope to approve it unchanged and send it directly to Obama, though Republicans intend to attempt parliamentary objections that could change the bill and require it to go back to the House, AP reports.
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