The Senate is nearing agreement on a bill to replace Obamacare’s individual mandate with a new one that would replace some of the taxes that have been a sticking point in the GOP’s attempts to repeal the health care law.
Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) announced Monday that the bill he introduced earlier this week would replace the individual mandate’s taxes with a flat tax on sales and use of personal health insurance.
“We have reached an important agreement that would allow states to take their own steps to replace the income tax on medical and dental care, and the income and sales taxes on prescription drugs and medical devices, with a single rate,” Alexander said in a statement.
The legislation is expected to be voted on by the House later this week. “
At this time, I am confident that it will pass the Senate, and we will move to the next stage.”
The legislation is expected to be voted on by the House later this week.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) is expected Tuesday to announce that he has reached a deal with Democrats to pass a replacement that includes the individual and employer taxes, according to Politico.
“I’m optimistic the Senate will pass a bill that includes all of the tax changes and then proceed to the final passage, which I expect to happen this week,” McConnell said on Fox News Sunday.
The Senate passed a bill in June that included a repeal of the individual tax and the mandate, but Republicans said they could not pass a substitute for the individual taxes.
Republicans also said they were not sure they could pass a plan that included tax credits for individuals to purchase insurance on the health insurance exchanges.
In a conference call Monday, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R–Utah) and Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D–Ore.) said that if the Senate passes the new bill, they would then move to vote on legislation that would repeal the individual mandates.
Hatch said that the Senate should have a vote by September on a new replacement.
The House passed its own replacement for the health law on Sept. 22, but it did not include any of the existing taxes or the individual requirements.
The GOP is trying to pass its own version of the bill by September.
“If the Senate can’t get a bill passed by September, we will hold another vote, and then we will then move forward to pass this legislation,” House Speaker Paul Ryan (R – Wis.) said Monday on CNN.
“It’s a matter of when, not if, we pass this bill, but we will.
That’s the process.”
The House GOP plan would add $500 billion to the federal deficit over 10 years.