House and Senate lawmakers Wednesday presented measures seen as attempts to undercut the Affordable Care Act instead as bipartisan efforts to fix a flawed but salvageable law.
In the House, legislators reintroduced a bill to repeal the medical device tax, which levies a 2.3 percent tax on items like artificial joints and MRI machines. Lawmakers in both chambers also announced bills to formally define full-time work as 40 hours, up from the act’s current 30-hour threshold.
Notably absent from press conferences announcing the measures were the familiar tirades against a “broken,” “job-killing” law that keeps patients away from their doctors of choice. (Newly installed Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., still took the time in his opening floor remarks Tuesday morning to slam Obamacare, though.) Instead, Republican Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Joe Donnelly of Indiana, as well as GOP Rep. Erik Paulsen of Minnesota, described their respective bills as aimed at parts of the controversial law where members of both parties can find common ground.