Senate Tax Bill Would Repeal Obamacare’s Least Popular Provision

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Robert Donachie Capitol Hill and Health Care Reporter
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Senate leadership said Tuesday that the Senate’s bill to reform the U.S. tax code will include a repeal of Obamacare’s individual mandate.

“We’re optimistic that inserting the individual mandate repeal would be helpful and that’s obviously the view of the Senate Finance Committee Republicans as well,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters.

Republican Sen. John Thune of South Dakota also confirmed the provision to repeal the mandate to reporters at the Capitol Tuesday afternoon. He said he’s confident Republicans have the necessary 50 yes votes to get the bill through the chamber’s reconciliation process, with Vice President Mike Pence acting as the tiebreaker.

The mandate is one of the least popular features of the Affordable Care Act and nearly every Republican push to repeal and replace Obamacare in 2017 included a full repeal.

The president backed the move to repeal Obamacare’s individual mandate through tax reform Monday, but the measure was not included in the House tax bill and was not confirmed in the Senate’s until Tuesday.

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