In the final minutes of a daylong session, Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., accused Republicans on Saturday of trying to stifle a historic debate the nation needed.
The Republican leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, said the vote was anything but procedural — casting it as a referendum on the bill itself, which he said would raise taxes, cut Medicare and create a "massive and unsustainable debt."
Vice President Joe Biden told Iowa Democrats that the Senate handed the president a big victory with its decision.
"Tonight we have more momentum than we've ever had in the history of health care discussions,'" Biden told about 1,000 Democrats in Des Moines.
The legislation would require most Americans to carry insurance and provide subsidies to those who couldn't afford it. Large companies could incur costs if they did not provide coverage to their workforce. The insurance industry would come under significant new regulation under the bill, which would first ease and then ban the practice of denying coverage on the basis of pre-existing medical conditions.
Congressional budget analysts put the legislation's cost at $979 billion over a decade.
To get the real cost of this government takeover, click on the link below!