Representatives in the U.S. House are set to top last year’s vote to repeal the 2.3% medical device excise tax.
The "Protect Medical Innovation Act of 2013," co-sponsored by Reps. Erik Paulsen (R-Minn.) and Ron Kind (D-Wis.), has garnered 259 signatures, according to the Library of Congress’ THOMAS database. Rep. Roger Williams (R-Tex.) is the latest lawmaker to add his name to the list, having signed on this week.
That list is expected to grow by at least 2 more lawmakers, according to J.C. Scott, SVP, government affairs for AdvaMed, who appeared with Paulsen on a conference call Thursday.
"We’ve done a good job convincing the hill," Scott said, adding that 261 would be a "high water mark" for repeal.
The House passed a repeal bill last year with a 242-173 vote. However, that was never taken up in the Senate.
The Minnesota lawmaker stressed the importance of maintaining momentum in the repeal fight, especially in the Senate, which voted 79-20 in favor of a bipartisan amendment that would repeal the medical device tax in March.
"I’m glad to see the Senate has focused on this issue," Paulsen said. "Seventy nine [Senators] is nothing to scoff at."
He added that it was now up to the rank-and-file members of the Upper Chamber to push leadership for a vote on the issue.