- 10 months ago
I appreciate the sentiment, but technically Congress and their staff aren’t exempt from Obamacare. If they are currently enrolled in the workplace insurance, they are expected to get on the exchanges.
Yes, they are expected to get on the exchanges. That’s not in question, at least from what I’ve read on the issue. The controversy — the “exemption,” as it’s called — is the 75% premium subsidy that the Office of Personal Management (OPM) recently gave to members of Congress and staffers on the Hill.
That subsidy is far greater than most subsidies on the health insurance exchanges, not to mention that it blatantly defies the congressional intent of the provision in question. What’s more, the controversial OPM ruling may be illegal.
With that said, it’s also true that most congressional staffers aren’t raking in big bucks. Most of the high-dollar salaries are reserved for chiefs of staff ($100,000+ per year) and legislative directors and assistants ($90,000 and $75,000 range, respectively). Higher ranking committee staffers also do pretty well.
Low-dollar staffers are the ones who would feel the pain if the 75% premium subsidy weren’t there. The argument is that these staffers work a lot of hours for little pay in an area with a high cost-of-living. That’s not in doubt, and I sympathize with them, as congressional staffers are often unfairly maligned. The comments recently made by Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-GA) are a perfect example of that.
While I don’t mean to demean anyone working on the Hill (I have several friends who work in congressional offices), how are their lives different from the average American who makes too much money to qualify for subsidies on the exchange and can’t afford to shell out $150 to $200+ a month for a health insurance plan?
With all due respect to Ron Paul Problems and staffers on the Hill, that’s where the frustration is coming from, and it’s completely understandable why people feel they way they do about the OPM “fix.”
NOTE: Ron Paul Problems explains that the 75% subsidy was already in place as an employer contribution for health insurance. I get that. But the intent of the Grassley amendment was “shared suffering,” if you will. That Congress would experience the same pain that Americans purchasing coverage on the exchange would feel.Source: freeplanetickettonorthkorea
There’s a group here in Georgia that has been placing fliers on cars at various events around the state hoping to raise attention to politicians’ records. Some of the fliers make good points, though they overlook the damage they’ve done to their own cause. Others are, well, willfully misleading.
Take, for instance, a flier this group placed on cars last night at an event hosted by Peach Pundit. They claimed that Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) is “trying to have it both ways” on the Internet sales tax, known in Congress as the “Marketplace Fairness Act.”
They accused Price of “sending letters in support of the Internet Tax Mandate to constituents who support it…and letters expressing concern over the Internet Tax Mandate to his constituents that oppose it!”
For the record, I don’t know if this particular accusation is true. I don’t live in his district and haven’t contacted him about the Internet sales tax.
But during a public event earlier this summer Price said he opposed the measure “in its current form,” though he said that he could support it if it were part of a comprehensive tax reform proposal that implemented a consumption tax, like the FairTax, which the Georgia Congressman supports.
"I could consider the potential for taxation [on the Internet] if I thought that it was part an overall, comprehensive tax reform that was neutral from a tax stand point, and that moved us in the direction of a consumption tax," Price told the crowd. “But right now, in its current form, there’s no way I could support it.”
In any event, the Internet sales tax, which has passed the Senate, probably won’t come to the House floor, according to Rep. Thomas Massie (R-KY), because too many members, though they oppose the proposal in private, are scared to cast a ballot against the Internet sales tax for fear that they will lose influential donors who support the measure.
Note: I’ve crossposted a slightly different version of this on Red State.
"The object of this Essay is to assert one very simple principle, as entitled to govern absolutely the dealings of society with the individual in the way of compulsion and control, whether the means used be physical force in the form of legal penalties, or the moral coercion of public opinion. That principle is, that the sole end for which mankind are warranted, individually or collectively, in interfering with the liberty of action of any of their number, is self-protection. That the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant. He cannot rightfully be compelled to do or forbear because it will be better for him to do so, because it will make him happier, because, in the opinion of others, to do so would be wise, or even right… The only part of the conduct of anyone, for which he is amenable to society, is that which concerns others. In the part which merely concerns himself, his independence is, of right, absolute. Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign."
- 1 year ago
Thanks for tuning in, this was a really enlightening conversation that went pretty deep into political wonk territory.
Politics, politics, politics, libertarian, Book On Liberty- John Stuart Mill, Washington DC, Benghazi, IRS, regulations, laws, guns, Associated Press wiretapping, Immigration- Marco Rubio, Justin Amash, honest politician, Bush, Obama, Clinton scandals wiretapping, torture/waterboarding, Tea Party, Republicans, Democrats, Music, Macklemore, Drug War, Social Issues, Capital Cronyism positivity, life philosophy, happiness.
Thanks for listening!
Had a really good chat with Mike Herrera. Take a listen.Source: mikeherrerabestlife
- 1 year ago
UPDATE: We’ve been trolled.
The good news is one of the admins just got accepted into a graduate program that starts this spring, and the other is starting a new job next week. The bad news is that RPP is too much of a time consumer for us. May 1 will be our last day of posting before we go on hiatus. Hopefully we’ll be back in the near-ish future. Whether we return or not, we’ll make sure to go out with a bang. Thanks so much for reading!
- 1 year ago
My wife and I got to see Finch on Thursday at The Fillmore in Silver Spring, Maryland. Good times.
- 1 year ago