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MN-03: To my infinite disgust, Paulsen wins one

by Dan Burns on December 16, 2015 · 2 comments

paulsen2Pisses me off!

A federal budget proposal brought good news Wednesday for Minnesota’s medical device companies by freezing for two years a tax on products like pacemakers and ventilators that they have long opposed.
The package of tax cuts and spending cued up for final votes in Congress this week would suspend the 2.3 percent excise tax on those devices, ultrasound machines and more that took effect in 2013 as part of the funding mechanism for President Barack Obama’s health care law…
Though the budget deal stops short of the full repeal he and others have sought, Rep. Erik Paulsen said the wide-ranging support for the freeze — including the White House’s blessing — shows “that we can get this across the finish line for permanent repeal.”

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: If Big Device really wants to improve its already ample profiteering, its best bet should not be to look for more corporate welfare. It should instead focus on improving its uneven, to say the least, record of product development and reliability.

From Eric Ferguson:
So is Paulsen ready to quit and move on to his lobbying career? It’s not like he has a second issue he cares about. His political career is fulfilled.
From Mac Hall: Medical device companies that have raised prices and/or reduced their workforce (although that number is very low and employment reductions could be due to other factors) over the past few years, will receive a windfall. Medtronic expected the medical device excise tax to cost the company $210 million during fiscal year 2016 … meanwhile Wall Street rumor that Stryker has put an $18 billion offer for Smith & Nephew.
“Representative” Paulsen tried to peddle this as helping the “little guy” yet instead of suspending the MDT for “small business” (using the NAICS definition of 500 employees), he is helping out the “Big Boys” … aka “his donors”.
Watch for more mergers and acquisitions fueled with repeal monies.

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