Senate Opens Debate On Health Secretary Nominee

By: Associated Press Email
By: Associated Press Email

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Senate has opened debate on President Barack Obama's choice for Health and Human Services secretary, with Democrats calling for a quick vote as the country deals with the swine flu outbreak.

Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia said Obama needs to have his agency leaders in place to coordinate federal efforts for a potential pandemic.

The Senate scheduled an afternoon vote on Kathleen Sebelius, the two-term Democratic governor of Kansas. She was expected to get the 60 votes needed in the Democratic-led Senate, though perhaps with little margin to spare.

Anti-abortion groups have been urging Republican senators to vote against Sebelius, criticizing her support for abortion rights.

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