In it, but not of it. TPM DC

Lieberman Open To Medicare Buy-In, So Long As Public Option Scrapped

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Newscom / Bill Clark

"I'm open to looking at it," Lieberman told reporters. "But I want to make sure that we're not...adding a big additional burden to the Medicare program."

However, Lieberman seemed much less open to yet another potential public option trade-off, to extend Medicaid to everybody under 150 percent of the poverty line.

If the public option discussions result in an accord, Democrats will need Lieberman's vote. They'll also need an assurance from Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE)--and that's very much in doubt at the moment.

Additional reporting by Evan McMorris-Santoro.

About The Author

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Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at brian@talkingpointsmemo.com