Health Care Plan

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama is describing the health-care overhaul plan put forward by House Democrats today as a "major step" toward the goal of fixing what's broken, and "building on what works."

But House Republicans are sharpening their criticism. One GOP lawmaker says the plan could cause tens of millions of people to "lose their current health-care coverage."

Democrats say the plan would cover nearly all of the nation's 50 million uninsured, as Obama has promised. But they're offering few details on how to pay for it.

The House bill includes new responsibilities for both individuals and employers to get coverage. It would end insurance company practices that deny coverage to the sick. And it would set up a government-sponsored plan to compete with private companies.

In the Senate, meanwhile, two committees are getting bogged down
on the issue, as they try to cope with a price tag of a trillion dollars or more over ten years.

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

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