WASHINGTON (CNN) - Speaker Nancy Pelosi dismissed snags in Senate health care reform negotiations and insisted Thursday the House will pass a bill that includes a government run health care option to compete with private insurers.
"I have every confidence that we will have a public option coming out of the House of Representatives," Pelosi said at her weekly press conference.
Pelosi made it clear that a government run insurance plan is a central piece of the bill being drafted by House Democrats. "I'm saying we will have a public option in the House that will be real. If it's not real, it's no use doing. And if we don't do a public option, I'm not sure that we have as effective a public health care reform as we wished."
Without giving any details on how House Democrats will pay for their plan, the Speaker repeated her commitment that health care reform will not add to the deficit. She downplayed this week's Congressional Budget Office cost estimate of the bill being considered by Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. That estimate showed the cost at $1 trillion and said millions of Americans would remain uninsured. Pelosi said that CBO's estimate applied to a bill that "is a separate subject from what the legislation that we will put forth in the House."