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U.S. Conference of Mayors congratulates the U.S. Senate on passing historic health coverage legislation

(WASHINGTON D.C.) The U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM) yesterday congratulated the U.S. Senate on taking an important step forward to provide health care for millions of the uninsured. In a historic Christmas Eve session, by a vote of 60-39, the Senate passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

"Not since 1963, has the U.S. Senate convened to vote on legislation on Christmas Eve. It is appropriate the most important piece of health care policy since the creation of Medicare is passed on this landmark day as an early Christmas gift to the American people. We are one step closer to providing essential health coverage for millions of Americans," stated Tom Cochran, USCM CEO and Executive Director.

This bill will make insurance available to 31 million Americans who do not have it, and would prevent insurance companies from denying coverage to people with pre-existing medical conditions. In addition, the bill would require most individuals to purchase health insurance and offer subsidies for those who cannot afford the coverage.

"The U.S. Conference of Mayors looks forward to working with Congress to finalize the bill in conference committee and move it toward final passage. The American people deserve a health care system that is fair, affordable, and includes everyone," concluded Cochran.

The U.S. Conference of Mayors is the official nonpartisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. There are 1,139 such cities in the country today, each represented in the Conference by its chief elected official.