The Senate has been fairly clear that they cannot pass a healthcare bill including a public option, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel asserted Wednesday evening.
Emanuel professed pessimism that healthcare reform would include a strict public (or "government-run") option, though he signaled an expectation that House liberals may still push for the prized reform.
"I think Senate's been clear about the prospect there is," Emanuel told PBS's Charlie Rose when asked if healthcare can pass with the public option. "That doesn't mean in the House they're not going to come to the table and demand it."
The chief of staff argued that the public option would be hammered out in conference between the House and Senate bills. He said that the bill would be likely be passed by the Thanksgiving holiday break in Congress, though.
"Health care will be passed before the members go home for Thanksgiving," he said, rejecting a question about whether the bill would largely resemble the proposal to emerge from the Senate Finance Committee.
"It will not just be on the Senate Finance Committee because the legislative process a place where both bodies get to contribute," he said.