Today a very important milestone in health care reform was reached with little fanfare and only a small amount of media coverage. October 15th was the first day Democrats could use reconciliation to pass health care reform according to the budget they adopted earlier this year. With reconciliation, health care reform could pass with only a simple majority in the Senate.
Using reconciliation is not without its problems. Provisions in the bill that are not directly related to government revenue could be stripped out according to the Byrd Rule. Regardless of the potential problems with using reconciliation, today is the first day Democrats can pass a health care reform bill that can't be filibustered. Democrats currently seemed determined to pass a bill under regular order by gathering 60 votes for cloture (which is a whole other story). But as of today they technically don't need to.