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House Dems announce health bill

From NBC's Mike Viqueira, Luke Russert and Tony Capra
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the outline of the House healthcare bill this morning on the West Front steps of the Capitol.

The bill is available on the House Rules Committee Website.

The Speaker's office says it would cost $894 Billion over 10 years and be fully paid for.

The Congressional Budget Office will release a "score" for the bill later today.

*** UPDATE *** The press secretary for House Minority Whip Eric Cantor e-mailed First Read contending that Republicans were barred from being at Pelosi's West Front announcement.

"Dems are blocking access to their press conference," wrote Brad Dayspring, an aide to Cantor. "Apparently there is a list, and if you're not on it, you can't get through. This is a public space on the steps of the Capitol and the Mall."

NBC's Mike Viqueira, who was there, confirms that a Cantor staffer was barred from attending by a Capitol policeman, who said he was told by the Speaker's office that it was invited guests only.

When asked about it, security officials and the Speaker's staff said that didn't seem right to them and that they knew nothing about it.

As an aside, there was one protestor with a bullhorn who was shut down. In that area, apparently no amplified sound is allowed.

*** UPDATE 2 *** Cantor's office offers up this video of a barricade to the event, an RSVP list and a staffer saying they can watch it on C-SPAN.

Asked how much consideration, if any, there is for the security of the person who's second in line to the president of the United States, Dayspring responded, "You'd have to ask them whether security is the reason that the Speaker's staff banned the public from attending – I don't have those answers."