Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) said Wednesday he's begun reaching out to other colleagues in both parties about reshaping the health bill through amendments on the Senate floor.

Grassley, the ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, said in a conference call with Iowa reporters that he has had conversations with senators not on either committee handling health reform legislation about assembling a new bipartisan agreement.

"I've had discussions with senators that aren't on the committee that could possibly work with us to try to get back into a bipartisan mold," Grassley said. "I think, though, that it'd be very helpful for people who aren't on the Finance committee or even the HELP committee...would kind of take the bull by the horns themselves and try to coalesce around something that could eventually become more bipartisan."

Grassley had been the lead Republican member of the so-called "group of six" senators on the Finance committee who had worked (to no avail) at reaching a bipartisan agreement on healthcare reform.

But after Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) introduced his bill last week, Grassley had railed against the proposal as a "partisan" bill that he would be unlikely to support.

Grassley said that party leaders in the Senate -- Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) -- would need to realize that the current health bill will not get 60 votes and encourage lawmakers before any new talks were to take off.

"One necessary thing, though, for that to happen, or to at least get encouragement from Reid and McConnell is for Democrats themselves to realize that they may not have 60 votes, and that they also do not want to go the reconciliation route," Grassley explained.

"I think it looks like he's going to get his bill out of committee, but that's a far cry from getting it out of the United States Senate," he added.