Medical device tax: Senate repeal vote was more than symbolic, says Indiana Sen. Coats

April 4, 2013 by Arezu Sarvestani

The Senate's non-binding vote in favor of repealing the 2.3% medical device tax sets the stage for true repeal, says Indiana Senator Dan Coats (R).

Indiana Senator Dan Coats

The Senate's non-binding vote in favor of striking the 2.3% medical device tax was more than a mere gesture, according to Sen. Dan Coats (R-Ind.) – it set the stage for true repeal.

The Congressman and long-time medical device tax opponent told reporters this week that the Senate's 79-20 vote against the tax signals growing momentum in the repeal movement, especially from Democratic lawmakers, which made up 33 of the majority.

"This was a big step forward," Coats said during an interview with Inside Indiana Business. "The White House was shocked by the margin, the number of Democrats that crossed the aisle and voted with Republicans on repealing this. "

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The non-binding amendment to repeal the medical device tax, which was part of a non-binding continuing budget resolution, has been criticized by some as little more than cover for lawmakers who can tout their support of the industry without having to make the hard choices about the tax and the $30 billion in revenue its expected to raise over 10 years.