Finance committee vote on Baucus bill scheduled for Tuesday

The Senate Finance Committee will vote Tuesday morning on an $829 billion healthcare reform bill, giving Chairman Max BaucusMax BaucusChanging of the guard at DC’s top lobby firm GOP hasn’t reached out to centrist Dem senators Five reasons why Tillerson is likely to get through MORE (D-Mont.) extra time to shore up wavering votes.
 

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Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidDraft House bill ignites new Yucca Mountain fight Week ahead: House to revive Yucca Mountain fight Warren builds her brand with 2020 down the road MORE (D-Nev.) announced the schedule during a floor speech Thursday in which he praised Baucus’s bill for reducing the budget by $81 billion over 10 years.
 
“Yesterday, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office confirmed that the Finance Committee [bill], which is one of five plans before Congress to restore the way that health insurance companies treat people in this country, will reduce the deficit,” Reid said. “It said in black and white that the Finance Committee bill will reduce our deficit, not just in the short term, but over the long term.”
 
The legislation would also reduce the nation’s uninsured population by 29 million people.
 
Democrats view the score released Wednesday afternoon by the CBO as a major boost to Baucus’s bill. The nonpartisan analysis confirms that the package will fulfill President Barack ObamaBarack ObamaSocial media users rip Fox graphic on economy under Trump, Obama Wasserman Schultz: Trump's agenda 'irrational and extreme' Climate March draws huge crowd to DC MORE’s long-stated goal of reducing federal healthcare spending.
 
Baucus said Wednesday that he would schedule a committee vote on the legislation after reviewing the CBO analysis and consulting with fellow committee members.
 
Baucus will use the next few days to secure the votes of several colleagues on Finance who have voiced concerns about the bill. At the top of that list are Democratic Sens. Jay RockefellerJay RockefellerObama to preserve torture report in presidential papers Lobbying world Overnight Tech: Senators place holds on FCC commissioner MORE (W.Va.) and Ron WydenRon WydenWhat killing net neutrality means for the internet Overnight Tech: Net neutrality fight descends into trench warfare | Zuckerberg visits Ford factory | Verizon shines light on cyber espionage Franken, top Dems blast FCC over net neutrality proposal MORE (Ore.), and Republican Sen. Olympia Snowe (Maine).
 
Snowe told reporters this week that she wanted to have sufficient time to review the CBO report before voting.
 
Baucus must also pay attention to Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) who represents a conservative state that turned in a strong vote against Obama during the 2008 presidential election. Lincoln faces a challenging reelection next year, when her vote on healthcare is expected to become a major campaign issue.