Reid's 6 Biggest Headaches

Ben Nelson, Joe Lieberman are two of them
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 28, 2009 8:14 AM CDT
Reid's 6 Biggest Headaches
Sens. Mary Landrieu and Evan Bayh are seen as swing votes on health care reform.   (AP Photo/Harry Hamburg)

To get the 60 votes he needs just to bring his health care bill to the floor of the Senate, Harry Reid is going to have to rein in some of his caucus' members. Politico surveys the majority leader's biggest challenges.

  • Joe Lieberman, Conn. The independent said yesterday he'll join a GOP filibuster if the bill's not changed. He's no fan of either a public option or Olympia Snowe's trigger option—though he might just be posturing.

  • Blanche Lincoln, Ark. She's facing an uphill election battle next year in a deeply red state. Yesterday she said she'll have "tremendous troubles" supporting a government-run program but wants to see the bill first.
  • Mark Pryor, Ark. He's ready to bring the bill to the floor but may not vote for it at the end.
  • Ben Nelson, Neb. The caucus' most conservative member is playing coy, saying it's "too soon" to take sides.
  • Evan Bayh, Ind. He's relaxed about the public option, but may vote against the bill depending on how it affects the average family's premium.
  • Mary Landrieu, La. She's "very skeptical" about the Reid plan and won't even say whether she'll vote for debate. Liberal activists in the Bayou State are already threatening her.
(Read more health care reform stories.)

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