Health care bill headed for Thursday passage - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Health care bill headed for Thursday passage

WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama's landmark health overhaul has cleared its last procedural hurdle in the Senate and is headed for final passage Christmas Eve.

Senators voted 60-39 Wednesday to end a GOP filibuster and proceed to a final vote on a bill that would extend health coverage to 30 million uninsured Americans.

The Senate's 58 Democrats and two independents voted together against unanimous Republican opposition.

It was the third 60-vote procedural tally Democrats have won since Monday. The final passage vote, scheduled for 7 a.m. Thursday, requires only a simple majority, so Democrats should triumph easily.

While providing a big victory for the White House and Democrats, the Senate bill still has to be merged with a House version.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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