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Obama's response to Alexander

From NBC's Mark Murray
As mentioned earlier, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R) called on President Obama to "renounce" using reconciliation, if this is truly a bipartisan exercise.

Obama's reply: Let's figure out the areas where Democrats and Republicans agree, the areas where they don't, and "make an honest assessment whether we can bridge these differences."

"My hope is that we can," he said, but adding that they might not be able to.

"Let's talk about the substance" -- on costs, coverage, insurance -- "and we might surprise ourselves that we agree more than we disagree."

So Obama's response was not to talk reconciliation off the table, but talk first.