Senate health panel takes up 40-hour week

The Senate committee on health will devote one of its first hearings of the new Congress to a GOP-led bill aimed at weakening ObamaCare’s employer mandate, its chairman announced Wednesday.

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Sen. Lamar AlexanderAndrew (Lamar) Lamar AlexanderOvernight Energy: BLM staff face choice of relocation or resignation as agency moves | Trump says he's 'very much into climate' | EPA rule would expand limits on scientific studies Juan Williams: Republicans flee Trump Romney, Collins, Murkowski only Senate GOP holdouts on Graham's impeachment resolution MORE (R-Tenn.), who cosponsored the bill, said he will hold a hearing this month to highlight ways the employer mandate’s definition of a 30-hour work week has “made it harder” for American businesses to stay afloat.

The bill, which was introduced Tuesday by Sens. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsGOP senators warn against Trump firing intelligence community official This week: House kicks off public phase of impeachment inquiry Senate panel clears controversial Trump court pick MORE (R-Maine) and Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyWatchdog accuses pro-Kavanaugh group of sending illegal robotexts in 2018 Lobbying world Trump nominees meet fiercest opposition from Warren, Sanders, Gillibrand MORE (D-Indiana), would raise the threshold for “full time” work to 40 hours.

The hearing will also help the committee “work toward undoing the damage Obamacare has done and preventing future damage from this historic mistake of a law,” Alexander wrote in a statement, his first remarks since officially becoming chairman on Wednesday.

The bill is expected to reach a vote in the House on Thursday.

Spokespersons for the committee did not immediately return requests for comment about the timing of the hearing.

The workweek bill drew more than a dozen Democratic votes when offered last year, but the White House on Wednesday promised the measure would be met with a veto if it ever reached President Obama’s desk.