WASHINGTON Dec 22 U.S. Senate Democrats cleared the second of three 60-vote hurdles on President Barack Obama's healthcare overhaul on Tuesday, moving the landmark legislation one step closer to passage by Christmas.
For the second consecutive day, Democrats mustered 60 party-line votes to cut off debate on the healthcare reform bill and move toward final passage over unanimous Republican opposition.
The last 60-vote hurdle will come on Wednesday, with a vote on final passage -- which requires a simple majority -- now scheduled for late on Christmas Eve on Thursday if Republicans use all their allotted debate time as they have vowed.
(Editing by Vicki Allen)
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