Pelosi tells C-SPAN: 'There has never been a more open process'

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) defended Congress' work on a healthcare bill Tuesday saying the process has displayed historic transparency, just as C-SPAN mounts an effort to open the negotiations.

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C-SPAN wrote a letter to congressional leaders Tuesday asking that TV cameras be allowed to film negotiations to reconcile the House and Senate versions of healthcare reform legislation.

But Pelosi said Congress has already been transparent throughout the process.

"There has never been a more open process for any legislation," Pelosi said at a press conference.


Pelosi also hinted that holding informal negotiations--likely without TV cameras--might be the most practical way to push the legislation through.

"We will do what is necessary to pass the bill," Pelosi said.

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), assistant to the Speaker, said the healthcare bill had been "subjected to unprecedented level of public scrutiny."

Pressed on whether C-SPAN cameras would be allowed in negotiations, Van Hollen hedged.

"We don't even know if there's going to be a conference committee," he said, alluding to the likelihood that Democrats will reconcile the two bills behind closed doors.