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The switch puts Senate Democrats one vote shy of a filibuster-proof majority of 60 seats. They can reach the 60-seat mark if Al Franken holds his current lead in the disputed Minnesota Senate race.
Four congressional committees, one in the Senate and three in the House of Representatives, have approved sweeping healthcare overhaul legislation without a single Republican supporting the bills. But fiscally conservative Democrats had to be brought on board with ideas that may lose liberal votes.
Taking a different approach, Senate Finance Committee leaders have been trying to hammer out a bipartisan package, but Democratic leaders want them to wind up by September 15.
"I think the timeline is more than fair," Schumer said. "If we cannot produce a bipartisan solution by then, you have to wonder if the Republicans would ever be willing to agree to anything"
Underscoring the deep divisions among Democrats was concern among members of the Congressional Black Caucus that Obama and the leadership were making too many concessions to the fiscally conservative Blue Dog Democrats.
Leaders of the Congressional Black Caucus said they requested a meeting with Obama.
Why All The Name Calling
I will assume that your sight has been momentarily obscured.
And you know what else? In the meantime, while we gladiators are fighting amongst ourselves, Washington does whatever it pleases because we are too busy making state enemies of our neighbors.