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Local Lawmakers React To Obama Speech

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Two area lawmakers say the President's speech on health care will motivate moderates from both parties to support the health insurance overhaul.

D.C. Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton said that even in the District, residents were unclear who would qualify for public health insurance. She said the president's speech before Congress not only clarified complex issues, but also may have moved some lawmakers off the fence.

"We got some Republicans back tonight I think. But it's been very clear for weeks, this is a Democratic matter," said Norton.

Fairfax County Representative Gerry Connolly said the speech helped dispel falsehoods that critics have been spreading for months.

"He said to the left: Don't overstate the role of the public option. And then he said to the right: Don't overstate the role of the public option," said Connolly.

A bill could hit the Senate floor as early as next week. Before any bill actually becomes law, the House and Senate need to pass separate versions and reconcile the differences. That's sure to take quite some time.

From Capitol News Connection, Peter Granitz reports...

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