November 18th, 2009
06:59 PM ET

Evening Buzz: Senate Dems Unveil Health Care Bill

Maureen Miller
AC360° Writer

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid unveiled a new health care reform bill that would extend coverage to 30 million Americans who are currently uninsured and would cost $849 billion over the next decade.

The price tag comes from a cost analysis by the Congressional Budget Office, which estimates the proposal will also cut the federal deficit by $127 billion over the next 10 years and at least $600 billion in the following decade.

"We all acknowledge that this legislation is a tremendous step forward. Why? Because it saves lives, saves money and protects Medicare, it makes Medicare stronger," Reid said this evening on Capitol Hill.

Reid must now work to get 60 votes in the Senate to avoid a GOP filibuster and start debate on the bill.

That means if all 40 Republicans stay unified in opposition to the measure, the Reid must get support from all 58 Senate Democrats, as well as independents Sens. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

It's expected to be a heated debate.

"Higher premiums, tax increases and Medicare cuts to pay for more government. The American people know that is not reform," said Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.

Reid's bill includes a government-run insurance plan, or public option. Though, states can opt out if they want.

We'll have a breakdown of what's in the proposal tonight on 360°.

And, don't miss part two of Abbie Boudreau's special report "Killings at the Canal: The Army Tapes." Tonight we have the starling confession of Sgt. Michael Leahy, one of three U.S. Army sergeants who killed four Iraqi detainees at a Baghdad canal in 2007. His confession is part of 23 and a half hours of Army interrogation videotapes obtained exclusively by CNN.

We'll also have live coverage of Pres. Obama's press conference in South Korea. It's the last part of his 11-day tour of Asia.

Join us for these stories and much more starting at 10pm E.T. See you then

Filed under: Maureen Miller • The Buzz
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Joanne P.

    In light of the hiked premiums and less coverage from the private insurers, along with the taxing applied to never-before-taxed durable medical equipment, the Federal Government has succeeded in bilking and taxing the working class to pay for yet another free medical program!

    November 19, 2009 at 9:25 am |
  2. Jim Carroll

    We need to pass a health-care bill now. It can be improved later. I wish
    the President, Congress, and the News Media would go to the internetfreepress.com and look at the plan outlined there for health-care.

    November 18, 2009 at 10:06 pm |
  3. Lori

    Sounds interesting.

    November 18, 2009 at 9:54 pm |
  4. Annie Kate

    Another health care bill? I like the sound of the deficit reduction but the higher premiums, higher taxes, and Medicare cuts don't sound so good. Will be interested in hearing more details on this. Looking forward to 360 tonight.

    November 18, 2009 at 9:44 pm |