Senator Ben Nelson becomes number 60
POSTED: Saturday, December 19, 2009 - 7:24pm
UPDATED: Thursday, April 8, 2010 - 3:06am
TYLER - A huge break-through in the health care debate.
A democratic senator from Nebraska has agreed to provide the 60th and deciding vote on health care.
Senator Ben Nelson was holding out on the Senate bill because of his concerns about the availability of abortions.
He says he decided to support the legislation after winning concessions that ensure people will have the option to choose plans where federal funds won't be used to pay for abortions.
"Change is never easy. But change is what is necessary in America today and that's why I intend to vote for cloture and vote for Health Care reform," Senator Nelson explains.
As part of the deal, Nelson also won tens of millions of dollars in federal Medicaid funds for his home state of Nebraska.
With Nelson's support, democrats could pass the health care overhaul bill in the Senate before Christmas.