Whitehouse to Remain on Key Committee During Health Care Debate

Al Franken's arrival in the U.S. Senate, after a lengthy legal bout with Republican Norm Coleman, means Sheldon Whitehouse will lose a temporary post with the chamber's Health Committee - eventually. 

But the Rhode Island Senator, it seems, will hold onto the job until the panel works out its healthcare overhaul bill. That gives Whitehouse, who has watched his profile expand amid the back-and-forth over Bush-era torture memos, a chance to participate in an even higher-profile debate - and a chance to shape perhaps the most important legislation in a generation.

But a close association with health care reform, as the Clinton-era failure demonstrates, carries a certain amount of political risk, too.


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