Sunday, December 13, 2009

McCaskill's Vote "On Hold" For Healthcare?

Claire's Conditions

Sen. Claire McCaskill stopped short of fully committing her vote for the Senate healthcare bill Sunday, saying her support would be determined by the Congressional Budget Office.

McCaskill appeared on FOX News Sunday: "If the current healthcare compromise doesn't bend the cost curve and bring down the deficit, it's back to the drawing board," she said. "Until we get the numbers back from the Congressional Budget Office we're all on hold. I have to be assured that this is going to bring down the deficit and is going to bring down healthcare costs for Missouri families," she added.

McCaskill is seen as likely to support the legislation, but her comments underscore the uncertainty that remains in the delicate legislative negotiations Democrats are navigating as the year comes to a close. At least two key Democrats -- Sen. Ben Nelson & Sen. Joe Lieberman -- say a Medicare "buy-in" option for ages 55 and up is a deal breaker.

The Congressional Budget Office is expected to release its analysis this week on the revised bill's cost.

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