Senate Health Talks Continue

Posted August 3, 2009 at 5:09pm

The six bipartisan health care negotiators on the Senate Finance Committee broke for the evening Monday, reporting no major breakthroughs and revealing few details about their progress.

Finance Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) said the group would meet throughout the week, with video-conferencing sessions and potentially in-person meetings scheduled for the August recess. Baucus appeared to stand behind the Sept. 15 deadline he imposed for an agreement on health care reform, although he suggested there might be some flexibility.

“We’ve got to have some kind of stopping point here. There’s got to be some realistic time when you’ve got to make decisions. We’ll discuss an exact date in the next couple of days,— Baucus told reporters.

Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), a participant in the gang of six talks, declined to answer reporters’ questions when he exited Monday’s negotiating session. Earlier Monday, Enzi released a statement saying he opposed the Sept. 15 deadline and would not abide by it.

The gang of six is tentatively scheduled to reconvene Tuesday afternoon.