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U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he leaves the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, U.S., before his departure to New York May 4, 2017. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House said on Friday it expects the Senate to retain the "principles" of the healthcare bill approved by the House of Representatives on Thursday even as it makes some changes.

"We expect there to be some changes, but we expect the principles and the main pillars of the healthcare bill as it exists now to remain the same," White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters.

Among those principles, she said, were creating a competitive environment and giving states more flexibility to make decisions about the healthcare system.

(Reporting by Roberta Rampton; Writing by Tim Ahmann; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

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