The House passed the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) after short-circuited debate today by a 289-139 vote.

All but two Democrats voted in favor of the SCHIP bill which funds states, which in turn guarantee healthcare for uncovered children under 18. Democrats had passed a version of the bill in the last Congress, but were unable to overcome a veto by President Bush.

40 Republicans broke ranks to support the bill, voting against party leadership, which had argued that the bill was too costly and amounted to government-run healthcare.

The package is estimated to extend coverage to 11 million children, and costs roughly $35 billion.

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