Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., at a news conference on Tuesday where they announced that the individual mandate to have health insurance would be repealed in the Senate GOP tax bill. J. Scott Applewhite/AP hide caption
toggle caption J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Senate Republicans now plan to try to repeal the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate as part of a tax overhaul bill.
Several Senate Republicans said Tuesday that including the repeal in tax legislation, currently making its way through a key Senate committee, would allow them to further reduce tax rates for individuals without adding more to the deficit.
The decision was a rapid change of direction for Republicans, who previously believed it would be politically dangerous to add any health care measure to the tax legislation.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters Tuesday that members of the Senate Finance Committee believe tacking on the repeal will ensure the bill has sufficient votes to pass when it comes up for a vote in the Senate.
“We’re optimistic that inserting the individual mandate repeal would be helpful,” McConnell said, “and that’s obviously the view