Democrats passed the landmark health care legislation along a party line vote Thursday. All 60 Senators in the Democratic caucus voted for the bill while 39 Republicans voted against it. One Republican was not present.
The bill would cost $871 billion over 10 years and expand access to 31 million people. With this vote, President Obama is one step closer to obtaining his top priority.
Laughter erupted in the Senate as Senate Majority Leader Reid mistakenly voted no and quickly changed his vote to yes. Vice President Joe Biden presided over the Senate in the case his voted was needed to break a 50-50 tie.
Late last week, Senators broke a Republican filibuster with the votes of all 60 Senators in the Democratic caucus. Several test votes were held throughout the week. Democrats were able to stay united for all the votes.
Attention now turns to negotiations to forge a compromise between the Senate bill and the and House of Representatives version, approved on November 7.
This video is from Fox News, broadcast Dec. 24, 2009.