In it, but not of it. TPM DC

With Health Reform At Stake, Senators Scramble To Reach Public Option Compromise

Newscom / Jason Reed

"There are a number of us that are for a strong public option. There's those that aren't," Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) told me. "Somewhere we'll meet in the middle.

"We are all in direct conversations about this," said Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA). "Now it's come to a head."

"It's an informal, but aggressive...individual and small group discussions with a variety of different senators with different viewpoints to try to find a place of principled compromise," Landrieu said.

According to Landrieu, the focus right now is on a version of a proposal, first proposed by Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-ME), and modified by Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE), to attach the public option to a trigger.

"What I could support is something like a competitive community option...which would be triggered," Landrieu said. "Various moderates have slightly different versions of that."

"That's where the discussion is right now," Landrieu added. "There has to be a decision soon."