September 24, 2013
The Honorable David Vitter
515 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington DC 20510
Dear Senator Vitter,
The undersigned organizations represent millions of Americans, all of whom believe in the principle of equal treatment under the law. That’s why we write in strong support of your legislation, S. 1497, The No Washington Exemption Act, which would restore this critical concept and make Congress subject to the same rules and regulations as millions of other Americans on the exchanges under the new health care law.
One of our greatest Presidents said ours is a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. He meant that those in power should live by the same laws as the rest of us.
Sadly, that isn’t the case today: The Office of Personnel Management recently determined that Members of Congress and their staffs would be treated differently than other Americans when they enter the exchanges to buy their health insurance under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
Members of Congress and their staff had their existing coverage dropped by their employers, the American people. This was included in the law based on overwhelming public support. People believe that those who created this law should experience it firsthand. Yet under this new proposed ruling, unlike other citizens who are losing their employer coverage and going into exchanges, those paid by Congress will now be able to receive health insurance subsidies from their employer – yes, that means that that special compensation will ultimately come out of the pockets of taxpayers – sparing them from feeling the full impact of the higher insurance premiums created by the new health care law’s many costly regulations.
This simply isn’t fair.
Those who imposed the law on the rest of the country – all of Congress, the White House, and their political appointees — need to experience the new health care regime just as millions of other Americans will. We sympathize that they find the prospect unpleasant: It will mean higher premiums and likely a change in their insurance providers.
But the net income loss they face will be no greater, and indeed often much less, than that faced by millions of other Americans who are seeing rising premiums, decreasing work hours, and even job loss as a result of the ironically named Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
If Washington, and particularly those responsible for passing and implementing this law, want to change this law, delay it, defund it, or repeal it, they can do so for all Americans. If they won’t, they need to live within the law, the same as every other American.
Heather Higgins, Independent Women’s Voice
Grover Norquist, Americans for Tax Reform
Gregory T. Angelo, Log Cabin Republicans
Jim Backlin, Christian Coalition of America
Brian Baker, Ending Spending
Morton Blackwell, The Weyrich Lunch
Brent Bozell, ForAmerica
Cindy Chafian, The Mommy Lobby
Dean Clancy, FreedomWorks
Kim Crockett, Center of the American Experiment
Robert K. Fischer, Fischer Furniture, Inc
Carol Greenberg, Conservative Blogger
Gretchen Hamel, Public Notice
Colin Hanna, Let Freedom Ring
Ken Hoagland, Restore America’s Voice
Warner Todd Huston, Freelance Journalist
Phil Kerpen, American Commitment
Amy Kremer, Tea Party Express
George Landrith, Frontiers of Freedom
Steven J. Law, Crossroads GPS
Mario H. Lopez, Hispanic Leadership Fund
Jenny Beth Martin, Tea Party Patriots
Jim Martin, 60 Plus Association
Dr. J. Robert McClure, The James Madison Institute
Jackie Moreau, Franklin Center for Government & Public Integrity
Seton Motley, Less Government
Stacy Mott, Smart Girl Politics Action
Penny Nance, Concerned Women for America
Eric Novack, US Health Freedom Coalition
Dan Perrin, HSA Coalition
Ron Pearson, Council for America
Tina Pisenti, Cascade Policy Institute
Ralph Reed, Faith and Freedom Coalition
Amy Ridenour, National Center for Public Policy Research
Ned Ryun, American Majority
Hal Scherz, M.D., Docs4PatientCare
James Simpson, Independent Journalist
John Tate, Campaign for Liberty
Forest Thigpen, Mississippi Center for Public Policy
John Tillman, Illinois Policy Institute
David Wallace, II, Restore America’s Mission
Rusty Weiss, Conservative Blogger
David Williams, Taxpayers Protection Alliance
Chris Wright, Obamacare Truth Squad