House panel passes bill to repeal healthcare law’s CLASS Act

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Democrats said during Wednesday’s markup that Congress should be focused on a solution to the CLASS Act’s woes and the growing need for long-term care.

“It’s clear it can’t be implemented at this time, but I think instead of repealing it we should work on replacing it,” said Michigan Rep. Sandy Levin, the panel’s top Democrat.

Republicans say the dormant program needs to be formally taken off the books, warning that leaving it legally intact would allow the Obama administration to revive the implementation effort and could expose the White House to lawsuits.

According to a Congressional Research Service report, HHS would technically be violating the healthcare law if it does not implement CLASS.

Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) said repealing the CLASS Act is hardly the same thing as giving up on the issue of long-term care.

“Let’s do the responsible and prudent thing, and let’s also remember that being imprudent and fiscally irresponsible is no substitute for compassion,” he said.