Obamacare stabilization will not be part of end-of-year U.S. spending deal

FILE PHOTO: A sign on an insurance store advertises Obamacare in San Ysidro, San Diego, California, U.S., October 26, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Two Republican U.S. senators who had previously demanded that an Obamacare stabilization bill be part of a deal to keep the federal government funded said on Wednesday they were dropping their request until after the new year.

Republican Senators Lamar Alexander and Susan Collins said they would instead ask Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to bring up the two pieces of legislation in January. Collins previously had said her vote for the Republican tax overhaul legislation that won final congressional approval on Wednesday hinged in part on a promise to pass two bills to prop up individual insurance markets set up under Obamacare.

They said they dropped their demands after it became clear that Congress would be able to pass only a short-term funding bill to keep the government open past Friday.

(Reporting By Yasmeen Abutaleb; Editing by Will Dunham)