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US Republicans Criticize Democrat Health Reform Plan

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U.S. Republicans say the country's health care costs could be lowered by cutting down on lawsuits and allowing people to buy health insurance plans across state lines.

Giving the Republican Party's weekly Saturday radio and Internet address, Illinois Congressman Mark Kirk said his party's suggested reforms are "common sense." He said he regrets their health care reform bill was rejected.

Kirk said the Democrats' plan is "a new massive spending program," when the national debt already "tops $12 trillion."

Last week, Democrats in the House of Representatives passed their plan. It includes a government-run option for health insurance and extends coverage to an additional 36 million people.

The government estimates the new bill would cost about $1.2 trillion over 10 years.

The U.S. Senate has yet to pass health care legislation.