For the first time since the Massachusetts special election last month, Democratic leaders in Congress have signaled an agreement in principle on a way to finally pass health care reform, despite the loss of their filibuster-breaking 60th vote in the Senate. However, though both House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid appear to have settled on an overall framework, they have backed off a timeline for reaching a workable solution as they resolve some outstanding procedural issues.
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Emerging from a meeting with Pelosi yesterday, Reid acknowledged that the most likely scenario for passing reform is what has come to be known as Plan B: Congress would preemptively pass an amending bill through the 51-vote budget reconciliation process, allowing the House to adopt the Senate bill word for word.
"That seems like a strong possibility," Reid said.
That puts him in agreement with House leaders, who say they can't pass the Senate bill until the reconciliation process is completely wrapped up.