Senate OKs Expanded Children's Health Program

AP via Pioneer Times-Journal:

The Senate passed legislation Thursday to add 3 million lower-income children to a popular health insurance program in bipartisan defiance of President Bush‘s threatened veto.

It also gave Democrats, who secured a veto-proof margin, a chance to draw a stark distinction between their priorities and Bush‘s on an issue that resonates with voters.

Bush has proposed spending $5 billion to extend the program. He says the Senate‘s $35 billion expansion would balloon the decade-old program beyond its original mission of covering working poor children and would move more people toward government-run health care.

The Senate measure now must be reconciled with the House-passed $50 billion expansion, which was paid for partly by cutting government payments to Medicare health maintenance organizations.

The vote (68-31) is important to note, because Bush had threatened to veto the bill. I'm just wondering who those kid-hating 31 senators are. (h/t HK) And again, for those who disparage: would we have gotten this expansion under a Republican majority? Oh wait, I found one:

David Sirota: Rep. Danny Rehberg (R-MT): CHIP is "extremist political ideology"

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