Chris Dodd on Merging Health Care Bills: We Will Get This Done

Now that the Senate has passed landmark health care legislation, the next step is for House and Senate leaders to come together to reconcile their very different bills into one bill that can pass both chambers. And as CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller wrote this morning in Hotsheet, that's the really hard part in this whole process.

But Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd, who will be a key player in the upcoming negotiation, is confident that Democrats can get it done.

"We're gonna get this done," the senior Democrat said on CBS' "The Early Show" this morning, adding that he hoped it would be voted on by the end of January or beginning of February.

"I don't think it's a question of one side or the other budging," Dodd said in the interview with "Early Show" co-anchor Maggie Rodriguez. "It's trying to come to a common ground on these issues and and I think there's a lot common interest and common goals in the bill. So I don't anticipate this to be an acrimonious discussion between the House and the Senate."

Dodd also addressed questions about whether the bill was popular with the public. Despite polls show reservations among Americans, the senator said he was confident that it would be popular.

"You're talking about whether or not they like what they've heard about it," Dodd said in response to Rodriguez's question. "I believe most Americans, when they see the benefits of all of this… This is going to be a very very popular proposal I think almost immediately."

You can watch the whole interview above at left.

More on Health Care:

Analysis: Now Comes the Really Hard Part
Key Differences Between House, Senate Bills
When Health Care Changes Could Take Effect
Obama on Health Care: Our Challenge Is to Finish the Job
Harry Reid Says "Nay" Before "Yea" During Vote
Republicans Compare Democrats to Ebenezer Scrooge
Senate, House Seek Health Care Compromise
How Filibusters Are Strangling the Senate
Abortion Still Threatens Health Care Bill
A Legal Challenge to Nelson's Health Deal?
Senate's Deal: Compromise or Corruption?
CBSNews.com Special Report: Health Care

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