Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) on Wednesday stressed the importance of bipartisan cooperation for an all-out effort to reshape the U.S. healthcare system as senior leaders from both parties meet to discuss ideas and proposals for a bill this year.
The goal is to have a bipartisan answer, said Dodd, who has taken the reins of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee while Chairman Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) battles cancer. Dodd spoke to reporters after a closed-door meeting among Democratic members. Dodd said he met with Sen. Michael Enzi (R-Wyo.), the committees senior Republican, earlier this week and that talks would continue over the next several days. We have Republican options that were discussing, Dodd said.
Republicans have underscored the importance of prevention and wellnessan area Democrats seemingly agree upon. And many proposals to streamline how care is delivered also enjoy support from both parties. Still, other issuessuch as a public health planhave so far split the parties. Every Republican says theyre not for it, but I think theyve got to come to the table, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) said earlier this week. We want to work with them.