November 30th, 2009
04:32 PM ET
12 years ago

Reid to Senate: Get ready to work overtime on health care

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Reid to Senate: Get ready to work overtime on health care."]Washington (CNN) - On their first day back from the Thanksgiving break, Harry Reid had a warning for his fellow senators: You can forget about any more down time for a while.

The Senate Majority Leader announced Monday, as the formal floor debate over the legislation crafted by the Senate Democratic leadership got underway, that "nothing can be more important" than the health care reform bill.

"We'll do this work tirelessly," the Nevada Democrat said on the Senate floor. "That may mean debating and voting late at night. It definitely means the next weekends - plural - we'll be working. I have events I'll have to postpone, some I'll have to cancel. There is not an issue more important than finishing this legislation."

The Senate was last in session the Saturday before Thanksgiving, when all 60 members of the Democratic caucus voted to begin debating health care reform in the full chamber. That Saturday vote could just be a taste of what's to come in December.

"We're going to have to work Saturdays and Sundays - as much and as long as we have to," said Reid.

The top Republican in the Senate countered Monday that working overtime on health care reform will jeopardize other important work.

"We have a debt ceiling expiring or needing to be expanded, according to the administration. We've not passed appropriations bill. There are tax extenders that expire at the end of the year. There are Patriot Act provisions that expire at the end of the year," Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, said on the floor of the Senate. "There are many things we must do this month, and yet, we're going to spend an enormous amount of time working on a bill that the American people wish we would not pass this month."

Filed under: Harry Reid • Health care • Senate
soundoff (116 Responses)
  1. Four and The Door

    After next year's elections when the Democrats get together and try and figure out what went wrong...why did Americans put so many Republicans and Independents in office, they will eventually figure out the obvious answer. It's the economy. It was all about the economy. After all that spending and regardless of all those promises, the jobs just didn't come back in time.

    November 30, 2009 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  2. Mary Wimen

    This current version will cost more than 2.5 trillion dollars over 10 years. They have drastically skewed the numbers. Take the costs 10 years after they start covering people. The 884 billion figure is from now till 10 years from now. It does not cover anyone till 2013. This will destroy the nation

    November 30, 2009 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  3. Jane

    HaHaHa where has congress been the last few years? And what have they done....Reid you make me laugh. Enjoy your last months trying to make up for the slacking off you have done in the last how many years. Good riddance.

    November 30, 2009 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  4. sylvia

    I wonder is " Mr" Reid would like to give up the grand health plan he ans the senate and congress all have that they do not even pay for, and take this new plan that they have worked sooooo hard to write????

    November 30, 2009 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  5. sylvia

    I wonder if Mr. Reid would be willing to give up the cushey plan he has now in exchange for this one????? I also wonder if he would be willing to pay for it since he does not even have to pay for the one he has now.....

    November 30, 2009 07:17 pm at 7:17 pm |
  6. Vote it down.........


    Let's get back to American basics......

    November 30, 2009 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  7. Reid needs to retire

    Reid's 4 trillion fdollare boondoggle -- Harry and nancy Pelosi ought to be tried as criminals for leading this country into bankruptcy. Obama ought to be tried for being incompetent and for impersonating a sitting President.

    November 30, 2009 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  8. Gerry NH

    If they have to work overtime on this bill does it mean that they will need to work 20 per week? Why don't they reform health care instead of the HC reform that they are trying to force down our throats. In 2010 I will be shoving my ballot down there and I don't mean throat.

    November 30, 2009 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  9. Brian from NJ

    I am beyond sick and tired of liberals blaming the GOP for not getting things done. What part of "Majority" do you people not understand... the GOP is powerless right now to stop anything. It is DEMOCRATS holding this up and if Reid wants his bill passed it will most likely cost us a few $100M more... that is the precedent this idiot set just to get this debacle on the floor for debate. To pass it might cost us even more... what is Sen. Hypocrite from LA going to want to move the bill out of debate?

    November 30, 2009 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  10. jennifer

    We need good reform and these bills are NOT going to make things better for Americans. It is in the 2,000+ page bill that a mammogram is rated C in a range of A to D. If anything is rated a C or D, you can forget about the insurance covering ANY of it!! Do you really understand what is in this disaster of a bill? Ten years from now, remember who to blame!

    November 30, 2009 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  11. Watchdog

    Despite all the money ACORN and SEIU are spending here in Nevada,
    (You cant watch a football game here without seeing their "Harry is a nice guy "commercials 10 times) the people of Nevada will send Harry into retirement this November!!!

    November 30, 2009 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  12. Texas Longhorn talks Truth

    You have to work overtime on the proposal he has suggested to straighten it out. People will suffer greatly for this stuppid moron's plan especially the elderly.

    November 30, 2009 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  13. Fed Up

    Shouldn't take you long. Just vote. You have 60 votes!

    November 30, 2009 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  14. Red by Choice

    Democrat's version of work: Sit on your butt and watch a Republican take the risk, perform the labor and generate value. Then when the Republican turns an evil profit, steal it by way of taxes.

    Harry wouldn't know what work looks like if it snuck up behind him and nibbled his lazy, tax-and-spend, short-sighted bum.

    Harry, the sooner you are voted out, the better.

    November 30, 2009 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  15. Rose

    I wonder how many Senators Reid is going to pay off to vote for this bill with our tax money. He can't bribe all of them, shame on Reid.

    November 30, 2009 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  16. marc from mississippi

    Please people, try to realize what harry just said. There is nothing more important than this. What a moron. It is hard to fathom how you liberals can continue to support this lunacy. 85% of the country are satisfied with their health care. 85% is a huge proportion. In an election, you would call that a super landside. But these idiots are willing to risk the 85% satisfaction, and for why? WHY?WHY? Their liberal ideology defies all reason. Don't they realize that they are elected by a simple majority, and yet, they are going to make 85% of the population very very mad. Go ahead you bunch of morons. You can't screw anything up that can't be fixed in 2010, when we get common sense back in government.

    November 30, 2009 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  17. Promises Promises

    US to REID: Help Obama find a course to create jobs.

    November 30, 2009 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  18. terry horn

    Just hang in there a little bit longer everyone ,youre free lunch is coming.

    November 30, 2009 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  19. Dobbs returns

    Reid is unelectable in Nevada, anyway. So the more time he spends
    away from his home base the better the deal is for his opponents.

    November 30, 2009 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  20. Stephen

    Finally, somebody shows at least a glimmer of leadership up there. Quit bickering and making up buzzwords about how this can or cannot be done, and get to work. Isn't that what we're paying you for?

    November 30, 2009 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  21. Minnesotan

    Please listen to what the Republicans have to say on this issue.... and then do the exact opposite. They've been so consistently WRONG on every issue, that it just makes sense to do whatever they oppose.

    November 30, 2009 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  22. Wise Latina

    Better idea – leave town NOW. Just take the rest of the year off and we'll all be much the better for it.

    November 30, 2009 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  23. Willy Brown

    I applaud Hippie Harry for bringing down the democrat party and guaranteeing their ouster in 2010. If only you people who think the government is a cure all would only educate yourselves on this socialization program and how much it will cost YOU then I think you’d see that the real part of no says Hee Haw to freedom of choice in America.

    November 30, 2009 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  24. MatthewDetroit

    We can NOT afford it.
    Scrap the bill and leave our healthcare alone.
    We do not want you touching it and stealing more rights away from us.
    This is about freedom folks.
    This is about the goverment controlling more dollars. PERIOD.

    November 30, 2009 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  25. JT the Show Me State College Freshman

    Senator Reid, that is what I love to hear. Now, I want the remaining 99 senators say the same thing. We Missourians really do appreciate people who are willing to get the job done, no matter how much overtime it takes. Sen Kit Bond, Sen. Clair McKaskill, are you willing to work overtime to give us quality health-care reform? We are watching you senators, and yes, Rep Bachman, we are watching you to (lol).

    November 30, 2009 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
1 2 3 4 5