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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nev. arrives for a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, May 25, 2011. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Senate has rejected a controversial House budget plan for turning Medicare into a voucher-like program for future beneficiaries.

Five Republicans joined every Democrat in killing the measure, which calls for transforming Medicare into a program in which future beneficiaries — people now 54 years old and younger — would be given a subsidy to purchase health insurance rather than have the government directly pay hospital and doctor bills.

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