Biden 'confident' that Lieberman will vote for final healthcare bill

Vice President Joe Biden said on Tuesday morning that he's "confident" Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) will vote for healthcare reform.

Biden said that while "gamesmanship" had taken control of negotiations over a compromise on healthcare in the Senate, Lieberman would ultimately join with Democrats to support the Senate's bill.

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"I'm confident Joe will see the light," Biden said during an appearance on "Morning Joe" on MSNBC. "I'm confident Joe's going to vote for a final bill here."

Lieberman had frustrated Senate leaders and the Obama administration for refusing to support a healthcare compromise including a provision allowing Americans between 55 and 64 years of age to buy into Medicare, a provision that was dropped by Democrats on Monday evening.

"Never question another man's motive, question his judgment," Biden said. "I think Joe's judgment is wrong on this."


The vice president suggested that Lieberman was trying to use the closeness to passage of the health bill to leverage his influence over the legislation.

"There's an awful lot of gamesmanship going on right now," Biden asserted. "This is the norm rather than the exception."

The vice president, a former senator from Delaware, also sternly cautioned his former colleagues against underestimating President Barack Obama's resolve on healthcare.

"I think people on the Hill, if they don't fear him, are underestimating the steel in this guy's spine," Biden said.