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Democrats lose big test vote on health legislation

New York Times, October 22, 2009

Democrats lost a big test vote on healthcare legislation on when the Senate blocked action on a bill to increase Medicare payments to doctors at a cost of $247 billion over 10 years. By addressing doctors' fees in a separate bill, Senate Democrats could hold down the cost of the broader health legislation, and House Democrats are considering a similar tactic. Republicans said it was a transparent ploy to hide the cost of a healthcare overhaul, the New York Times reports. Democrats had hoped that by passing the Medicare bill they could appease doctors and secure their support for the broader legislation, according to this article from the Times.