House votes to repeal ObamaCare's 'Cadillac tax'

House votes to repeal ObamaCare's 'Cadillac tax'

The House on Wednesday voted to repeal ObamaCare’s “Cadillac Tax” on high-cost health plans, removing a part of the health law opposed by many in both parties.

The wide bipartisan vote of 419-6 illustrates how the tax is one of the few areas of ObamaCare that has opposition across the political aisle.

The tax was designed to help keep health care costs down by discouraging overly-generous “Cadillac” health insurance plans. But both unions and employers opposed the tax, helping to set up a broad coalition against it.

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With former President Obama out of office, the main defenders of the tax are now health economists, who say it is a valuable tool to control health care spending.

Repealing the tax will cost the government the hefty sum of $196.9 billion over 10 years, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. 

“After a decade of fiercely debating the merits of the Affordable Care Act, I hope we have turned a corner today and can now focus on strengthening the parts of the law that work in the manner we'd intended and changing the parts of the law — which is not unusual — that we believe could be improved,” said House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard NealRichard Edmund NealOvernight Health Care — Presented by National Taxpayers Union — House Dems change drug pricing bill to address progressive concerns | Top Republican rejects Dem proposal on surprise medical bills | Vaping group launches Fox News ad blitz Top Republican rejects Democratic chairman's approach to stopping surprise medical bills Overnight Health Care — Presented by National Taxpayers Union — Buttigieg targets Warren, Sanders on health care ahead of debate | Judge overturns ObamaCare transgender protections | Poll sees support drop for 'Medicare for All' MORE (D-Mass.), praising the bill.

The timing of Wednesday's vote was aided by a new centrist-backed House rule designed to force votes on bills that have wide bipartisan support, or at least 290 co-sponsors. The Cadillac Tax repeal bill, sponsored by Rep. Joe CourtneyJoseph (Joe) D. CourtneyState dinner highlights the enduring importance of US-Australia alliance House committee heads demand Coast Guard Academy explain handling of harassment allegations House votes to repeal ObamaCare's 'Cadillac tax' MORE (D-Conn.), had 369 co-sponsors.

“I'm sure people are back home saying, ‘They can't do anything,’” said Rep. Mike KellyGeorge (Mike) Joseph KellyGenetic counselors save health care dollars when involved in the testing process America's workers and small business owners need the SECURE Act House votes to repeal ObamaCare's 'Cadillac tax' MORE (R-Pa.). “Well I'm here to tell you, today that's just not true. You are going to see a bipartisan effort today.”

The Cadillac Tax had never actually gone into effect, given that Congress repeatedly delayed it when it came close to taking effect. The vote Wednesday would fully repeal it, though it remains unclear whether the Senate will also bring the bill up for a vote.