Congress, staff should feel Obamacare's impact

info@islandpacket.comSeptember 29, 2013 

I received a letter from Sen. Tim Scott regarding the Affordable Care Act.

Scott wrote that the law does not stop the federal Office of Personnel Management from continuing to subsidize insurance premiums for Congress and its staff.

Scott was disingenous. He failed to mention that the law specifically limits the amount of subsidies for all Americans based on income. His income -- and that of most of his staff -- exceeds the maximum allowed to receive government subsidies.

This means that contrary to the law, Scott and most of his staff will receive a waiver from Obamacare and receive federal subsidies of approximately $4,900 for individuals and $11,000 for families, subsidies other Americans earning the same amount will not receive. Without this waiver, many congressional staff members saw the impact of the law on them as a substantial decrease in income and threatened to resign, potentially causing a so-called "brain drain" in Congress.

When Congress passed Obamacare, it included an amendment, authored by Sen. Charles Grassley, that subjected members of Congress and their staffs to the same provisions of the law as other Americans. It did not contain any language to allow special government subsidies for them.

Grassley's reasoning was that if Obamacare plans were good enough for Americans, they were good enough for Congress. I urge Scott to show he agrees by refusing to accept the illegal subsidies recently granted by the Office of Personnel Management and endorsed by President Barack Obama.

Charles M. Murphy

Sun City Hilton Head

The Island Packet is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service