CLASS Act repeal sponsor teams up with pro-reform Dem on alternative

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Boustany has twice introduced similar legislation in previous Congresses.

Co-sponsoring the bill could be a risky move politically for Neal, because it gives Republicans cover to claim that they're offering alternatives to the healthcare reform law. 

"I feel very strongly that we should repeal CLASS," Boustany told The Hill on Monday, "but we need to put things in place or start something in motion to improve prospects for people to buy long-term-care insurance."

Boustany acknowledged this week that his repeal legislation wouldn't get a floor vote this year, but vowed to aggressively push for it in 2012.

The CLASS Act would have created a voluntary payroll deduction program administered by HHS. It has been on ice since September, when Secretary Kathleen SebeliusKathleen SebeliusMark Halperin inks book deal 2020 Democrats fight to claim Obama's mantle on health care Biden, Harris tangle over heath care in Democratic debate MORE said in September that the Obama administration couldn't make it sustainable "at this time."