WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama says he expects to get the votes for his health care overhaul, telling ABC News “we're going to make this happen.”

In an interview Monday, the president said Democrats were working to get a bill ready for a vote later this week.

He said: “I believe we are going to get the votes.”

He said it was imperative to act now. He said if there's a delay, it will be too late and changes in the health care system won't be in place in three to five years. He said that will force Americans to wait another decade or more for politicians to address the problems.

He said without an overhaul, the federal government won't be able to pay its bills on Medicare and Medicaid.