Hoyer: Too many hurdles for Friday health vote

There is no way for the House to meet its Friday deadline for a vote on healthcare, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said Monday night.

"That clearly will not be possible at this time," Hoyer told reporters. He said the deadline can't be met because of procedural hurdles and promises leaders made to give lawmakers time to read the bill.

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But he added, "We have other days available to us." He has previously said that the House could meet Saturday, Monday or Tuesday.

He made the remarks after leaving a negotiating session between House Energy and Commerce Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) and centrist Blue Dog Democrats.

Seven Blue Dog Democrats have blocked the bill from getting out of Waxman's committee, saying it doesn't do enough to cut costs and places too much of a burden on small businesses.

Waxman resumed negotiations with the group of Blue Dogs on Monday night after the talks nearly broke down Friday.

Waxman said he didn't know if his committee would resume its markup this week. But he said time is running out.

"This is the week for markup," Waxman said. "If we're going to do the bill out of committee, this is the week."

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