Senate to Send Health Care Bill Back to House

Senate Republicans have gotten advice from Parliamentarian Alan Frumin that two challenges they will mount Thursday will be successful, each resulting in what one GOP aide called "minor" changes to the health care reconciliation bill, though one could change the actual price tag of the bill.

Jim Manley, spokesman for Majority Leader Reid, confirmed that, saying the House could easily approve the expected changes.

One change is "technical" (a "drafting error", according to one GOP aide), the other a problem with funding as it concerns the Pell Grants portion of the bill.

A senior Senate GOP leadership aide described the later issue like this:

"Basically, Democrats tried to improve their cost score AND claim improved Pell grants by mandating the latter without mandating the spending. They said Pell grants should increase, but didn't make it mandatory; they rely of discretionary spending and rely on a future Congress to act. They can't do that. This was one of 100 gimmicks used to keep the score down."

The Senate adjourned at 2:55am ET after dispensing with 29 GOP amendments, none of them passing.

The chamber reconvenes at 9:45am and is expected to finish work on reconciliation around 2pm. Reid has said no further amendments or points of order will be considered after that time.