During a nearly two hour caucus conference call this afternoon, rank and file Democrats sought answers from their leadership about the state of ongoing House, White House health care negotiations. But they may not get concrete responses until the caucus meets again next week, or, failing that, until President Obama huddles with members at the Democrats' issue conference next week at Fort McNair.
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"The questions were about national exchanges, about the public option, about the Cadillac plans, about consumer protection, about insurance reform," said Rep. George Miller (D-CA), chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee, and one of the chief authors of the House health care bill. "We told them what things the staff had started to discuss or haven't discussed yet."
According to a House leadership aide, members chief concerns on the call regarded a familiar array of issues. "Many members raised concerns about excise tax (in opposition to it)," the aide said. State exchanges came up -- many Members want a national exchange. Several spoke up also in favor of anti-trust exemption (repealing it) and keeping in place strong insurance reforms."