US Senate moves up healthcare passage by hour
The U.S. Senate agreed to move up by one hour its vote on final passage of a sweeping healthcare overhaul to 7 a.m..
The U.S. Senate agreed on Wednesday to move up by one hour its vote on final passage of a sweeping healthcare overhaul to 7 a.m. EST (1200 GMT) on Thursday.
The move came as senators, anxious to hurry out of town for the Christmas holiday, tried to beat a winter storm developing in the Midwest and West.
President Barack Obama's healthcare overhaul is headed for Senate approval in the final vote, but Republicans have refused Democratic requests to yield back their allotted debate time under Senate rules and allow a final vote on Wednesday.
Republicans have vowed to delay passage of the healthcare bill as long as possible. Obama has delayed his departure for his Hawaiian vacation until the Senate passes the bill.
The healthcare fight has resulted in a grueling schedule this week in which senators were summoned for votes after midnight and at daybreak.
Reuters Last Mod: 23 Aralık 2009, 23:07