Washington (CNN) - The Senate's second-ranking Democrat said Sunday he was open to changing the government-run public health insurance option in the chamber's health care bill to ensure that the measure passes.
Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the Senate assistant majority leader, said on the NBC program "Meet the Press" that the goal is to inject competition into the health insurance market in order to bring down costs and expand coverage to people unable to afford coverage now.
The public option is the most controversial provision in the $848 billion bill unanimously opposed by Republicans. Several conservative and moderate Democrats also have said they will oppose a final bill that includes the public option.
Asked about a possible compromise that would trigger a public option in the future if specific thresholds for coverage and costs go unmet, Durbin said there were "many variations on the theme."
"We are open because we want to pass the bill," Durbin said.
Walker's daughter, wife, Demetria, and cousin, Andrew, keep the restaurant running, and in this bad economy, times are tough. Health care coverage is out of the question.
"It's too expensive right now," Walker said. "We are having trouble keeping our head above water. ... We had it at one time, but it was so expensive that we finally dropped it."
With a smile, Walker continues: "I get lots of grief from my wife about it - that we don't have health care."
Washington (CNN) – Longtime Clinton ally and Democratic strategist James Carville had some rare words of praise for former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin Sunday on CNN’s State of the Union. But, ever the good husband, Carville made sure to heap equal praise on his wife, Republican strategist Mary Matalin.
The two were discussing the recent controversial cover of Newsweek magazine, in which Palin is shown in running shorts. Carville said Palin should not complain about the use of a photo which was not a candid shot but one she had originally posed for, even if it were for a publication other than Newsweek. Echoing recent comments by Palin, Matalin disagreed and said she thought the Newsweek cover was sexist.
“You can agree on this,” Matalin asked her husband, “she looked good in it, right?”
“She does,” Carville said without hesitation, “Ain’t no doubt about that. You and her are the two best-looking women in the Republican Party,” the Democrat told his wife.
Related: Carville, Matalin share rare tender moment
But Carville did not have much more positive to say about Palin.