A bipartisan House measure to repeal the 2.3% medical device excise tax that helps fund the healthcare reform law has been floated as a compromise to end the federal government shutdown. Reps. Charlie Dent (R-Pa.) and Ron Kind (D-Wis.) were leading a coalition of 11 Republicans and eight Democrats late last week seeking an end to the stalemate. The proposal reportedly would fund the government at the sequester cut levels for six months, repeal the device tax and offset the nearly $30 billion revenue loss over 10 years by changing employer pension rules.
House floats device tax repeal as compromise to end shutdown
But Democratic leaders in both the House and Senate opposed the measure because they aren't willing to negotiate reform law provisions as part of the current spending fight and because it would extend the sequester cuts for six months rather than the shorter period they seek. “The current continuing resolution is not the best place to work out a medical device tax repeal,” Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.), a supporter of repealing the device tax, told Modern Healthcare. “But I will take a careful look at any proposal that emerges.”
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