Health Care talks ‘fall apart’

Patrick O’Connor on the Hill:

The negotiations between House Energy and Commerce Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) and seven conservative Democrats on his panel fell apart Friday afternoon after the chairman told reporters he could move the bill to the floor without a committee vote.

Arkansas Rep. Mike Ross, the top negotiator for conservative Democrats in the Blue Dog Coalition, told reporters Friday that the negotiations "pretty much fell apart this afternoon."

In a meeting with Blue Dogs Friday, Waxman rescinded two previous concessions to help cut health care costs over time and ensure the government-sponsored health care won’t impede on the private market.

Asked how this leaves the negotiations, Ross said it "leaves the chairman with not enough votes to get it out of committee."

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