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Senate steers toward showdown vote next week on health bill

WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans steered toward a potential showdown vote on their long-awaited health care bill next week, despite indications that they’ve yet to solidify the 50 GOP votes they’ll need to avert an embarrassing defeat.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said he expected to have a draft of the bill ready Thursday. The measure would peel away much of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul and leave government with a more limited role in providing coverage and helping people afford it.

“We have to act, and we are,” McConnell said on the Senate floor.