Senate Democrats rush to repeal tax they rushed to pass without reading, first

Posted by: Phineas on March 22, 2013 at 2:01 pm

**Posted by Phineas

Remember how the Democrats pushed and pushed to ram through Obamacare as fast as they could, despite huge public opposition? So fast, most didn’t even bother to read the bill before voting on it? So fast, the Senate had to use “Rube Goldberg” procedures to pass it? So fast, Nancy Pelosi said they’d have to pass the bill to find out what’s in it?

Those were the days, my friends.

But, now that they’ve found out about at least one part, the idiotic “medical devices tax,” Democrats, especially those from states where the medical device industry is important, are joining with Republicans to repeal it:

The Senate gave sweeping bipartisan approval Thursday to a proposal by Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, and Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., to put senators on record in favor of repealing a tax on medical devices – a key part of President Obama’s controversial health care law.

The Hatch-Klobuchar amendment to the GOP budget plan is the latest effort to roll back the tax that applies to a range of medical products, from surgical tools to heart devices. It’s among several taxes in Obama’s 2010 health care overhaul.

The amendment passed the Senate by a vote of 79 to 20. The bill that it was attached to did not pass, but the sponsors used it as an opportunity to rally support for repealing the tax — as well as a separate bill they’ve introduced to achieve that. 

“Today, bipartisan members of the Senate spoke loudly and clearly that this tax on medical devices simply must go.  It is a drain on innovation, on job creation and on our ability to provide ground breaking medical technologies to patients,” Hatch said in a statement.

The Affordable Care Act levies a 2.3 percent tax on medical devices with the goal of raising nearly $30 billion over the next decade.

The Obama administration, naturally, is opposed to repeal of the tax, because the money it is expected to raise is crucial to Obamacare’s funding. But Democratic senators from vulnerable seats don’t want to have to explain to angry voters why their pacemakers and prosthetics cost more, or why the pace of innovation will slow, as the profits that would have been plowed back into R&D instead goes to the Treasury.

Expect this to happen more and more as the full weight of the PPACA kicks in. An already impossibly unwieldy law will become increasingly unstable as people demand unpopular taxes be repealed or find ways to avoid them, until the whole structure just collapses.

Of course, some would argue (and I would agree) that this collapse is an acceptable outcome to democratic socialists like Obama and Illinois Rep. Jan Schakowski, who think and hope that the turmoil caused will lead people to demand what the Left really wants: state-run single-payer health care.

Our job is to remind people every day that Obamacare is itself the problem, that the only solution to rising medical costs is a program of patient-centered, market-based reforms that remove the price distortions caused by government intervention and respects the liberty of the individual. If someone says that “Too late, Obamacare is set in stone, we can only tinker with it,” just give them a one-word answer: “Prohibition.”

Meanwhile, we can enjoy the spectacle of liberals like Senator Klobuchar running screaming from the monster they helped set loose.


(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

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6 Responses to “Senate Democrats rush to repeal tax they rushed to pass without reading, first”


  1. “Dost thou not know, my son, with how little wisdom the world is governed?”–Count Oxenstierna (1583-1654)

  2. Tex says:

    Wait till next year when Democratic voters, who approve of Obamacare, find out that it will be cheaper for companies to drop covering their employees’ healthcare insurance and pay the fine to the government than to continue to provide it to their employees.

    Seeing the look on their faces when they go out to buy that “cheap” medical insurance at the “insurance exchanges” that Obama promised them and discover their employers had actually paid for 80% of their insurance premiums when their insurance premiums go from $400 per month with employer provided insurance to $2,000 per month at the exchanges – priceless!

    Seems Obama neglected to tell them that little fact.

  3. Carlos says:

    And what, pray tell, difference will eliminating this tax mean in the overall scheme of things?

    It’ll mean that instead of doctors using devices made in the good ol’ U.S. of A., they’ll be working with Chinese and/or Korean devices, and that instead of being an unfunded mandate of only $47.32T, the bill will become an unfunded mandate of $47.38T. Over the course of ten years, of course.

    Gosh, how’d those bipartisan senators find such a huge part of the overall debt-driver? Must’ve taken those genii all of seven or eight minutes of painstaking research to find that.

    Our Congress, both parties, and the administration are disgusting.

  4. Polly says:

    Our Congress, both parties, and the administ-ration are disgusting.

    You are being way too kind. They are beyond disgusting and don’t forget the supremes. I don’t think that any of what is going on now in the District of Criminals can have a good ending.

  5. Steph says:

    I just read yesterday this article (and good for N.C.!). The answer to getting rid of this unaffordable mess we have coming into being is our state government. I have read several articles about this and for the best information, read the blog above for older articles as well. I am hoping and praying that Obamacare dies quickly. I suppose there needs to be some reform but the first thing that needs to be addressed is litigation reform in ALL states for risks that we take. One thing GOOD about California (there are a few) is that medical malpractice awards for “pain and suffering” have a limit (used to be $750,000 but it might have been raised for inflation purposes). The only way to get MORE money is to prove intentional wrong acts or a company knowing its product harms and refusing to do anything about, for example. But this business of suing for ridiculous things that happen has to be dealt with first…before any other reform is addressed. Part of the reason health care is so expensive is due to unnecessary tests being ordered just to protect the medical provider from litigation. There are a host of other things that contribute to the rise of medical care but this O’care is not the cure. If anything, it makes everything worse not to mention the outright violation of our First Amendment protections!

  6. Carlos says:

    Steph: I was just in the hospital because I was having a heart attack. Had I not been aware of many things associated with heart attacks I probably would have ended up with triple by-pass surgery and innumerable, useless tests.

    But I can understand why docs do it all the time. My primary care physician is a very, very good doctor, but after the first time he was sued he became very intensely self-protective. He won the case (he basically had to defend himself because the group for which he works wanted to settle), but learned that frivolous lawsuits are the order of the day and always will be because the lawyers that run our state legislature (and most others) won’t do a thing to harness the destruction of lawsuits they’ve built into the system.