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Senate Moves Up Final Health Care Vote

(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell announced this afternoon that they have come to an agreement for the final vote on the health care bill, CBS News Capitol Hill producer John Nolen reports.

The vote is now scheduled for 8 a.m. on Thursday morning (Christmas Eve Day), rather than after 8 p.m. on Christmas Eve as had been expected.

The two Senate leaders sent the announcement out with the following heading: "Whip Notice – the 'I'll be Home for Christmas' edition."

Since Reid secured the 60 votes needed to stop debate on the bill over the weekend, the Senate has been working through a series of procedural hurdles needed for passage.

Under the schedule announced today, the next and final cloture vote on the bill will happen at 2:15 p.m. tomorrow. Senators will then vote on the final bill at 8 a.m. the following day.

The senate will also vote on a 2-month extension of the debt limit on Thursday before adjourning for the remainder of 2009, Nolen reports.

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