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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 10-03-25
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 US Health Bill Sent back for New House VoteThursday, 25 March 2010 11:30
A package of amendments to the landmark healthcare reform law must go back to the US House of Representatives after Republican objections were upheld. Some supporters of the bill had received threats and abusive messages. After months of tough negotiations the main legislation was passed in the House of Representatives by 219 votes to 212 on Sunday, with no Republican backing
"I am confident that the House will be able to deal with these and pass the legislation. The Republicans re only trying to block improvement of health system in US " Harry Reid
The package passed by the Senate had to be returned to the House for approval after Republicans found two points, which Democrats say are minor, had to be deleted. They involved a provision to prevent reductions in the federal low income student aid program.
"After hours of trying to find a way to block this, the Republicans found two relatively minor provisions that are violations of Senate procedure which means we're going to have to send it back to the House" said Jim Manley, spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
The House of Representatives 219 votes extends health coverage to 32 million more Americans.The reforms will increase insurance coverage through tax credits for the middle class and an expansion of Medicaid for the poor. They represent the biggest change in the US healthcare system since the creation in the 1960s of Medicare, the government-run scheme for those aged 65 or over.
One day before the Justice Department issued a statement, saying it would vigorously defend the constitutionality of the law. "We are confident that this statute is constitutional and we will prevail when we defend it in court," the statement said.
Sources: Reuters, ÍÅÔ, ÁNA-ÌPA
BBC: US health bill sent back for new House vote News item: 34740