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    Congress Protects Itself from Itself

    11/05/2013

    The basic principle behind the rule of law is that all laws must apply to all citizens equally. Unfortunately, Congress is trying to subvert this principle with regards to Obamacare.

    FreedomWorks members are being told that Congressmen, Senators, and their staffers can keep their federal health insurance subsidies. Several concerned citizens have received similar letters back from their legislators about this issue.

    One such response says the Office of Personnel Management’s regulations “clarify that, like other large employers under the [health care] law, the federal government must continue to make the same contribution to congressional employee premiums as they do now, regardless of whether the employees are enrolled in [the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program] or receive their insurance through the marketplace [i.e. the Obamacare exchange].”

    This is misleading. Other large employers are allowed to contribute to their employees’ health care plans…unless the employee bought their plan from the Obamacare exchange. Since all members of Congress and their staffers are required to buy insurance from the exchange, they should not be entitled to an employer contribution. If Congress is allowed to keep their taxpayer-funded subsidies, then they will be cutting themselves a deal that no other citizen can receive.

    While the best solution would be to exempt all Americans from Obamacare, the next best option is the Vitter-DeSantis bill. The purpose of this bill is to make sure that Congress receives the same kinds of subsidies as everyone else. In addition to upholding the rule of law, it will force Congress to experience the same hardships that other Americans must endure under the Affordable Care Act, which will make them more likely to seriously reform the law.

    3 comments
    Maximum Sebastian
    11/06/2013

    Yet another reason I'm thankful for FreedomWorks. Thanks for the post (and the link to the Oct. post) Nick. I'll have to track this bills' progress through Congress and witness it's, hopefully not but most likely, sad slow death through prolonged procedural neglect or it's attachment to a 'lets make child pornography legal and foreclose on all widows and orphans' type bill. And Edwin....thanks for shaming me into re-reading my Federalist Papers, It's been long overdue.

    mark Chaffin
    11/05/2013

    That's an excellent point, the taxpayer's are on the hook for the subsidies as the employer; so we the people should have the say as to whether or not we choose to contribute not congress. This is an issue should be on a ballot and decided by the voters, especially when it concerns other federal agencies. No carve out's

    Edwin Loftus
    11/06/2013

    A better solution, though possibly taking more time to achieve (and possibly not) is a Constitutional Amendment based on the words of James Madison:
    Federalist 57 – "the 5th circumstance" ...
    "I will add, as a fifth circumstance in the situation of the House of Representatives, restraining them from oppressive measures, that they can make no law which will not have its full operation on themselves and their friends, as well as on the great mass of society."
    Translated as an Amendment this might read ... "Non-exemption of Congress". (from Madison, Fed. 57) ...
    "Congress can make no law which will not have its full operation on themselves and their friends, as well as on the great mass of society."