U.S. Representative Ed Markey (D-Mass.) offered his support to opponents of the medical device tax, saying that, had he had the chance, he would have sided with the Senate majority in voting to repeal the levy.
Markey, a long-time Bay State lawmaker, is hoping to make the jump from the House to the Senate, vying for upper chamber seat left behind by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.
He brought the medical device tax into his campaign this month, saying that he would have cast his vote in favor of the non-binding amendment to repeal the 2.3% levy, but his support was not unconditional.
Markey said he would vote to strike the levy as long as there was a source of funding to make up for the $30 billion or so the tax is expected to generate over 10 years, according to the Associated Press.
The issue of a so-called "pay-for" to replace the medtech tax revenue has been a sticking point, and repeal efforts have had a hard time gaining traction in the Democrat-led Senate as some members voiced concern about how the government would make up for the lost funds.
The last pay-for, proposed in June 2012 by GOP leaders ahead of a House vote, aimed to take a stronger hand in recouping over-paid health insurance tax credits granted to families. The measure was met with much consternation from Democrats, many of whom said they would have supported a device tax repeal bill if the cost didn’t fall on families.
Other pay-for proposals floated by lawmakers seek to make up for the lost revenue by cutting tax breaks for big oil and gas companies.