White House will have health plan ready by Monday: report

The White House and Democratic congressional leaders are nearing a final agreement on healthcare reform and expect to make it public by Monday, according to a report by the Associated Press.

A senior White House official said Thursday that Democratic negotiators are resolving final differences in House and Senate health bills that passed last year with virtually no Republican help. The White House plans to post the proposals online by Monday morning, three days ahead of the Feb. 25 summit, which GOP leaders are approaching warily.

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius affirmed on Thursday that President Barack Obama would present a single plan for healthcare reform before the summit despite the fact that House and Senate Democrats have not finalized a compromise version of the bills that passed both chambers last year. Republican lawmakers have expressed skepticism about the utility of the summit given that Democrats continue working behind the scenes on a proposal based on legislation that received just one GOP vote.

UPDATED 5:03 p.m.

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs declined to say when the healthcare reform plan would be posted online or what would be in it.

"I don't have an exact date for you. It will be within plenty of time for people to evaluate the ideas," Gibbs said on Air Force One Thursday.

"All I'll say is this: We continue to be in contact with the House and Senate on making progress on healthcare reform and look forward to a productive discussion a week from today, next Thursday," he said. "I won't get ahead of what we may post."