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Conrad votes for health care reform legislation in Senate committee

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WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Sen. Kent Conrad, D-N.D., voted to approve health care reform legislation Wednesday in the Senate Finance Committee, joining a majority to advance the proposal.

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Conrad is a member of the Gang of Six, a group of senators who crafted the proposal considered by the committee.

Democratic leaders will now meld the committee's proposal with others previously considered in Congress, so that a single bill can be brought to the full Senate for a vote.

During the Senate Finance Committee hearing earlier Wednesday, Conrad reiterated his opposition for a public option, which was previously considered in amendments to the committee's legislation.

As an alternative to a public option, Conrad has said he supports regional health care cooperatives.

In a much-anticipated decision, Sen. Olympia Snowe of Maine was the only Republican to vote with Democrats in favor of the legislation.

The legislation passed on a party line vote 14-9, with Snowe being the only Republican to side with the Democrats who control the committee.

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