WASHINGTON (CNN) - CNN has obtained an e-mail from a top aide of Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus – a message that aims to debunk a Washington Post headline that negotiators are close to a deal.
The authenticity of the e-mail, sent to top aides to senators on the Finance Committee and obtained by CNN from a GOP source, was confirmed by a Baucus aide.
"While progress has been made in recent days, neither an accord nor an announcement is imminent," wrote Russ Sullivan, Democratic staff director for the committee. "In fact, significant policy issues remain to be discussed among the Members, and any one of these issues could preclude bipartisan agreement."
While several senators have been more upbeat about the negotiators' progress over the last 24 hours, there is also concern about managing expectations, and about backlash from senators left out of negotiations who have not been briefed on all the details of the talks.
Still, Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley told National Public Radio Wednesday morning they are "on the edge" of a deal this week.
(Read the full text of the e-mail after the jump)
Full text of the e-mail:
From: Sullivan, Russ (Finance-Dem)
Sent: Wed Jul 29 08:19:05 2009
Subject: Clarification To Post Story
Today's Post article (A1- " Senators Close to Health Accord") makes it appear that a bipartisan deal is imminent. While progress has been made in recent days, neither an accord nor an announcement is imminent. In fact, significant policy issues remain to be discussed among the Members, and any one of these issues could preclude bipartisan agreement. Members will continue their methodical work. If you have questions, please call and we will give you more information. We do not want your boss to have a misimpression based on an inaccurate headline.