On January 1, Capitol Hill will lose its 75% health insurance subsidy. The members and staffers will be thrown overboard into the shark-infested waters of Obamacare — the health care exchanges (which still do not exist).
If they get out before January 1, they can save jobs in private industry that cover them.
The exodus has begun. “Obamacare? No thanks.”
You mean they will come under the same law they passed to put the citizens under? Yes. But Congress usually exempts itself. True, but this time, Senator Grassley — the cad! — stuck in a provision that says Congress must obey the law, just like the rest of the population.
In desperation, they are trying to find a loophole — for them, not for the voters.
There is none, so far. The natives are getting restless.
But the focus right now is centered on lawmakers trying to figure out how to offset potential increases in premiums.
“I know other members are doing the same thing in terms of what we can do to offset [premiums],” Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) said. “You are particularly limited now because of course we’ve had the cuts in the [member office allowances] on top of this. You just don’t have a lot of options.”
Cole added, “A lot of the staff stays on largely because of the benefit levels and particularly if you’ve got people with families and it’s extraordinarily important to them … it’s just not right.”
I understand. It’s just not right that employees on Capitol Hill should come under the law, as if they were normal people. Why now? It has not happened before.
Something must be done! And fast!
Not to worry.
Rep. John Larson, a Connecticut Democrat in leadership when the law passed, said he thinks the problem will be resolved.
“If not, I think we should begin an immediate amicus brief to say, ‘Listen this is simply not fair to these employees,’” Larson told POLITICO. “They are federal employees.”
Not fair! You see? They are federal employees, not normal people. Not average citizens. Not peons.
But if Congress finds a loophole, some of the voters back home will get wind of it. They will see that the Good Old Boys in Congress take care of their own . . . by providing loopholes. They will look like hypocrites.
Oh, the unfairness of it all! Oh, the vindictiveness of Senator Grassley!
It’s hard to be a Congressman. Very hard.