Nelson says vote to advance health care necessary

AP News
Posted: Dec 21, 2009 8:30 AM

Sen. Ben Nelson says the Senate health care bill isn't perfect, but he voted to advance the proposal to help control costs.

The Nebraska Democrat issued a statement early Monday defending his vote, saying that while "change is never easy" it is needed in this case because so many are struggling to pay for health care. Nelson's support was crucial _ he provided the 60th vote Democrats needed to choke off a GOP filibuster. But he's facing criticism from Republicans in his home state because of his support of the bill.

Nelson says he's glad the health care bill doesn't include a government-run health care plan, and it does include language to restrict taxpayer funding of abortions. Abortion foes say the bill's language isn't strong enough.