Franken: health care bill will pass "one way or the other"by Steven John, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — U.S. Sen. Al Franken said "one way or the other" a health care reform bill will pass Congress.
But another hurdle could be ahead, depending on the outcome of Tuesday's special Senate election in Massachusetts.
Democrat Martha Coakley had been considered a shoo-in just months ago, but polls now show the race is a statistical dead heat. Republican candidate Scott Brown has vowed to be the 41st vote against President Barack Obama's domestic agenda.
Franken said Coakley probably took the race for granted. But the Minnesota Democrat also blames what he describes as misinformation put out by Republicans during the drawn-out health care debate.
"People have asked me what sort of surprised me in the Senate," Franken said. "And you think of it as the greatest debating society in the world, or it's billed as that, and it hasn't been, especially in the health care bill."
If Brown wins Tuesday's election, Democrats would no longer have a filibuster-proof majority. But Franken said that could be overcome by having the House vote on the health care bill senators passed last month, which would make a Senate vote on a conference bill unnecessary.