Sen. Tom Harkin, the chairman of the Senate Health Committee, said negotiators from the White House, Senate and House reached a final deal on healthcare reform days before Scott Brown's victory in Massachusetts.Because of the Monday January 18 was Martin Luther King Day (i.e., a federal holiday), the CBO didn't have a chance to score the bill.
...Harkin said "we had an agreement, with the House, the White House and the Senate. We sent it to [the Congressional Budget Office] to get scored and then Tuesday happened and we didn't get it back." He said negotiators had an agreement in hand on Friday, Jan. 15.
Harkin made clear that negotiators had reached a final deal on the entire bill, not just the excise plans, which had been reported the previous day, Jan. 14.
Scott Brown's victory in the Massachusetts special election for Senate the next day (Tuesday January 19) then torpedoed the deal.
I knew this country narrowly averted disaster that week. But I had no idea how close of a call it was...