WASHINGTON (CNN) - Overriding President Bush's veto, both houses of Congress voted Tuesday to halt planned cuts in Medicare payments to doctors.
The 70-26 vote in the Senate was a much narrower margin than in the House of Representatives, where the vote was 383-41. Each chamber needs a two-thirds majority to pass a law over the president's objections.
The new law stops a 10.6 percent cut in Medicare payments to doctors, part of a scheduled cost-saving formula that went into effect July 1. The money for the doctors will be taken from the Medicare Advantage program, which subsidizes private insurers to cover seniors who would otherwise be treated through conventional Medicare.
Congress previously had passed only two bills over Bush's objections - a $23 billion water-project legislation that the president vetoed in 2007, and a $300 billion farm bill he spiked in May.