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The Washington Independent

House Panel Jumpstarts Reconciliation on Health Care

The House Budget Committee this afternoon approved a budget reconciliation bill that jumpstarts the process that Democrats hope will end in the Senate passing

Thomas Dixon
Last updated: Jul 31, 2020 | Mar 16, 2010

The House Budget Committee this afternoon approved a budget reconciliation bill that jumpstarts the process that Democrats hope will end in the Senate passing sweeping health care reforms by a simple majority.

The reconciliation bill, which will be the vehicle for the health care “fixes” the Democrats will add later this week, passed through the panel on a 21-16 vote. Two Democrats, Reps. Allen Boyd (Fla.) and Chet Edwards (Tex.), joined every Republican in opposing the measure. The process is starting in the House because, by law, any legislation that raises revenues (i.e., imposes taxes) must originate in the lower chamber.

The proposal now moves to the House Rules Committee, where Democrats are expected to attach the health reform language later this week before moving the package to the chamber floor. Democratic leaders have been mostly tight-lipped about the specifics of the health reform fixes, largely because they’re still waiting for the official cost estimates to come back from the Congressional Budget Office.

At least as controversial as the Democrats’ plan to go the reconciliation route has been their strategy, announced today, to pass the reconciliation bill alone, and then use an obscure rule to “deem” the larger Senate bill to be passed as well. Still, even Rep. David Dreier (Calif.), senior Republican on the Rules panel, conceded today that, if the Democrats can rally the votes behind the reconciliation bill, there’s nothing that GOP leaders can do to block the deeming strategy.

Thomas Dixon | He creates the ideal marketing experience by connecting online brands with their target audiences. He recently completed a research paper on consumer conversion and took part in a community project on SEO optimization. Thomas is working on his Bachelor of Arts in Communications and plans to intern in an online marketing department soon.


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