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Senate to Vote on at Least Four Health Amendments Tuesday

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Monday evening reached a unanimous consent agreement to hold votes Tuesday on four amendments, as well as to begin debate on two additional proposals to the Democratic health care reform package.Set for a vote are a motion to commit related to taxes offered by Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) and a Democratic alternative to that measure proposed by Finance Chairman Max Baucus (Mont.). Republicans have sought a vote on Crapo’s amendment for days, seen as another tough vote for moderate Democrats.Also, Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.) will finally get a vote on his prescription drug importation amendment. The Democrats are divided on this measure; Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) is offering an alternative. Debate will begin on amendments proposed by Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who caucuses with the Democrats. The full Democratic Conference is scheduled to meet with President Barack Obama for a little over an hour Tuesday at the White House, which will cut into the Senate’s workday. Reid confirmed that the Senate would be in recess while the Democrats are at the White House.

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