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Washington, DC - With medical issues cited as the reason for a majority of bankruptcy filings, Idaho Senator Jim Risch introduced an amendment to repeal a middle class tax increase contained in the so-called health care reform bill signed by the President on Monday.

"The new health care law raised the threshold on how much a person has to spend on out-of-pocket medical care before it can be deducted from their taxes. Under the old law, medical expenses that were paid and exceeded 7.5 percent of income could be deducted. The new law now requires that threshold be 10 percent of income," said Risch. "The President promised and gave his word that he would not raise taxes on a family making less than $250,000, yet this change directly raises taxes on 14.7 million people who make less than that. The President broke his word. It is a step backwards for some of the most vulnerable Americans. My amendment would change that and reinstate the 7.5 percent threshold."

Amendment #3645 to H.R. 4872, the House Reconciliation Bill, was voted on by the full Senate early this morning. The vote was on a motion to table the amendment, which would kill the amendment. Two Democrats joined with Risch and all Senate Republicans to proceed to the amendment, but the motion to table passed by a 55-40 vote.

"I am very disappointed this amendment was not agreed to. It is unfortunate Democrats need to raise taxes on the lowest income earners to pay for their government takeover of healthcare. To not fix it means higher taxes will be paid by those families that have serious health issues and are most vulnerable," concluded Risch.