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Medical Device Tax Repeal Vote Sought by GOP

Republicans are eager to attach a repeal of a medical device surtax to the tax cut extension package on the Senate floor, but the chamber’s top Democrat seems to have no appetite for it.

Sen. John Barrasso discussed the tax both at a Republican leadership media availability and again shortly thereafter with a smaller group of reporters.

“The Democrats will have an opportunity this week on the floor of the Senate to deal with jobs, the economy and the devastating side effects of the health care law,” the Wyoming Republican said. “I think it’s time to actually take a look at the medical device tax and truly putting forth, in a vote, an opportunity to eliminate the medical device tax.”

While Minority Leader Mitch McConnell would not speculate on how his members might vote, the prospects for the underlying tax cut bill passing the Senate without amendments seemed dubious.

“The bill does enjoy support. It is always our hope to have amendments,” the Kentucky Republican said, adding that he would not prognosticate about what might happen if Reid blocks amendments.