With the help of Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME), the Senate Finance Committee passed its health reform plan, America’s Healthy Future Act. The bill will now be merged by the Senate Democratic leadership with the Affordable Health Choices Act passed by the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will combine these bills with the goal of bringing a Senate health care reform bill to the full Senate the week of October 27, 2009. The Finance legislation includes government-sponsored insurance cooperatives and a mandate for all Americans to buy health insurance, while the HELP bill contains a government-run insurance plan (also known as the “public option”) and a mandate for employers to provide healthcare coverage to their workers in addition to an individual mandate. Both plans would ban insurers from denying coverage due to pre-existing conditions. Once these bills have been merged and passed, resulting legislation will be sent to a conference with the House of Representatives. Democratic leaders hope to present President Obama with final legislation by the end of 2009.