Congress Returns to Health Care Question

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As Congress returned from its summer break, Tuesday, health care resumed its position as the key topic in Washington.

President Obama met behind closed doors to discuss health care reform with Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid.

The meeting came as Obama seeks to recapture momentum on his health care overhaul, as opposition grows on both sides of the table.

Liberals are still pushing for a full-throttle plan that includes the public option.
    
However, Republicans and conservative Democrats want the president to scale back to something less costly and drop what critics call "government-run" health care.

Arkansas congressman Mike Ross leads a group of moderate House Democrats and voted for the public option before the recess.  Now, he says he's changed his mind after hearing from angry constituents over the break.

President Obama stressed his support of the public option in a preview of his Wednesday address to a joint session of Congress.

"I continue to believe that a public option within the basket of insurance choices would help improve quality and bring down costs," Obama said.

Aides say the president will lay out specific details of his health care proposal during Wednesday evening's speech.

The protests against health care reform also continues across the country as a major theme at so-called tea party demonstrations.

"There's energy and momentum beyond any one person or any small group of people," said Diane Nusbaum, founder of the Collin County Tea Party in Texas.  "This is a grassroots movement that is taking hold and there's rumbling going on in our nation and it will be felt in 2010."

The tea party protests are scheduled to end on Sept. 12 with a march in Washington.    

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