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Gang of Six to Reconvene at 5 p.m. Tuesday

The gang of six bipartisan Finance Committee negotiators is scheduled to convene at 5 p.m. Tuesday in what could be their final session before Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) formally introduces his health care reform bill.Baucus has made clear he intends to drop the Finance panel’s health care bill on Wednesday with or without a deal from his five negotiating partners. He is planning to begin a markup of the bill next Tuesday.Finance ranking member Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), one of the six negotiators, said Monday that there is still a possibility that the group could agree on legislation before Baucus introduces the bill. If that doesn’t happen, Baucus has suggested that the bipartisan talks could continue into next week in the hope that Republicans might jump on board during the markup.The negotiators include Baucus, Grassley, Democratic Sens. Jeff Bingaman (N.M.) and Kent Conrad (N.D.) and GOP Sens. Mike Enzi (Wyo.) and Olympia Snowe (Maine).The Democrats in the group are expected immediately offer up support for Baucus’ bill. Snowe is seen as the mostly likely Republican in the gang to back the legislation. Grassley and Enzi are viewed as the most resistant negotiators to Baucus’ framework.

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