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Oct 2, 2009 3:40 PM by Associated Press

Health bill fate still in doubt; GOP hits it anew

The health care reform plan that's ready for a vote by the Senate Finance Committee is coming under renewed fire today from Republicans.

The Senate's GOP leader, Mitch McConnell, is warning that the latest version would have a "dampening effect" on what he says is already a "very, very difficult economic situation."

McConnell says the bill would cut benefits for seniors and raise taxes on individuals and businesses.

While Republicans are nearly unified in opposition to the plan, Democrats aren't speaking with one voice in support of it.

There are still deep divisions over whether the government should sell insurance in competition with private industry.

The Finance Committee wrapped up work early today. A final vote was delayed until next week so budget officials can certify that it would not add to federal deficits. The only Republican considered a potential supporter, Olympia Snowe of Maine, says she hasn't yet decided how to vote.

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