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Health care reform approved by U.S. House; Wisconsin reports party-line vote

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Health care reform approved by U.S. House; Wisconsin reports party-line vote
River Falls Wisconsin 2815 Prairie Drive / P.O. Box 25 54022

The U.S. Senate may not pass health care reform any time soon.

Moderates and conservatives say they have the votes to wage a filibuster against the government-run insurance option approved by the House on Saturday night. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is looking for middle ground, including a public option states could opt out of.

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Russ Feingold, D-Wis., says he won't vote for a plan which doesn't have a public option.

But neither Feingold nor Herb Kohl, D-Wis., have said what they might approve in terms of a compromise.

The House package was approved by just five votes.

All five Wisconsin Democrats voted for it. All three state Republicans voted no. David Obey, D-Wausau, called it a landmark package which opens the door to health coverage for more than 35 million Americans, while making care more affordable for everyone.

Jim Sensenbrenner, R-Menomonee Falls, called it a "government takeover of health care" that would raise taxes, cut services, and let government encroach on people's lives even more.

All Americans would be required to have insurance under both the House bill and the package from the Senate's Finance Committee and there would be subsidies for those who can't afford it.

The Senate package is cheaper. And among other things, it does not force employers to offer insurance like the House bill does.

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