Senate Dems Can’t Quit the CLASS Act

by Betsy Woodruff

Now that the Obama administration has announced it is giving up trying to implement the fiscally unsustainable CLASS Act, Republicans will soon introduce legislation to repeal the program. However, the president has threatened to veto such a measure, and assures the program’s advocates that he has not given up on the CLASS Act yet. Senate Democrats also seem to be having trouble letting go.

“I think the need is there,” said Sen. Ben Cardin (D., Md.). “We need a long-term-care policy in this country that meets the needs of the people. . . . It’s expensive, we can do a better job, and I think the CLASS Act was an effort to deal with it. I was disappointed that we didn’t go forward with it.”

Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D., Mich.) said she would not support repeal. “I supported [the CLASS Act] during the health-reform debate,” she said. “So yeah, it would be my personal preference to have it.”

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D., N.H.) argues that repeal is unnecessary. “We’ve already heard from the administration that they don’t intend to implement it,” she said. “I think the repeal would just be a formality.”

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