and the Wall Street Journal
reported that there’s a good chance the Democrats will bypass a formal conference committee to hash out the differences between the House and Senate health care bills and instead, create a final bill out of the public eye and behind closed doors.
Since both chambers passed two different bills, negotiators must work to pass one uniform bill before it can be sent to the President for his signature. Votes in both the House and Senate were extremely tight and several issues must be reconciled before final passage including abortion, taxes, cuts to Medicare, and the public option. It appears the Democrats wish to do this outside of public scrutiny to speed up the process in hopes of getting it done and signed into law before the President makes his State of the Union speech. This is far from Mr. Obama’s pledge to keep the health care reform process open and transparent.