U.S. News

U.S. Democrats confident will have healthcare votes


WASHINGTON, March 21 (Reuters) - U.S. Democrats said they need just a few more votes to pass sweeping healthcare reforms later on Sunday, and Republicans vowed to repeal the measure if they win the mid-term elections in November. U.S. House Democratic Leader Steny Hoyer told NBC's "Meet the Press" said the remaining votes Democrats needed to win the 216 votes necessary to pass the bill in the House are in the "low single digits." "There are still members taking a look at it and trying to make up their mind, but we think that there are going to be 216 votes when we call the roll," Hoyer said. Separately, Representative John Larson, who heads the House Democratic Caucus, told CNN's "State of the Union", "We've got the votes." Republicans said passage of the controversial bill would cost Democrats their congressional majority after November's mid-term election and that Republicans would focus on repealing the measure. House Republican leader John Boehner said Democrats still did not have enough votes, but that if the bill passes his party would "have an effort to repeal the bill." "It's absolutely about repeal," Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele also told NBC. Keywords: USA HEALTHCARE/LEADERSHIP (Reporting by Susan Heavey; Reuters Messaging: susan.heavey.reuters.com@reuters.net, Phone: 202-354-5848) COPYRIGHT Copyright Thomson Reuters 2010. All rights reserved.

The copying, republication or redistribution of Reuters News Content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Thomson Reuters.