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U.S. News and Commentary



Thursday
Apr252013

Potential gift to GOP and the public: Reid seeks exemptions for ObamaCare

Even the politicos who passed the ObamaCare Tax Bill, presented under the misleading, ridiculous title the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, apparently don’t want the bill messing up their own healthcare and wallets.

Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid is the major politico responsible for passage of ObamaCare. Reid's home state of Nevada got a waiver once the bill passed. (Snip: C-SPAN)Politico has reported that there are “confidential talks about exempting lawmakers and Capitol Hill aides from the insurance exchanges they are mandated to join.”

At the center of the talks: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, the Nevada Democrat who lobbied hard for the bill.

Once it passed, Reid’s home state of Nevada got a waiver for key parts of the bill.

If  Politico’s claims are true, this would be a historic political gift to Republicans and Libertarians ahead of the 2014 Midterm Elections and even the 2016 Presidential Election.

Politico said House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) was cooperating with Reid and the Democrats because Boehner will save anyone he can from “the ravages” of the bill.

That is a serious misstep by Boehner.

Reid and the Democrats, with Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) as chieftain, rammed the bill through by way of legislative sleight of hand via budget reconciliation. Even Baucus, who will leave the Senate once his current term is up, has criticized the bill.

Having forced the bill on working men and women, Democrats proceeded to give waivers to Big Labor groups and corporate cronies.

The Daily Caller reported that even President Barack Obama’s Interior Secretary, Sally Jewell, got a waiver for her own company:

REI received an Obamacare waiver around the same time that nearly 20 percent of the businesses in House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi’s Northern California district received waivers.

Jewell helped Obama promote the bill in 2009.

Politico said members of Congress are worried about “a brain drain” on Capitol Hill if lawmakers and staffers don’t get exemptions.

Considering the levels of logic and reason in Washington at present, many of us believe there are no brains to drain.

Politico mentioned that members are concerned about losing their current subsidies for healthcare funded by the “federal government.” That is misleading—those subsidies are funded by the taxpayer.

Sen. Richard Burr, a North Carolina Republican, acknowledged that there could be a $7,000 a year “healthcare tab” for all, including “entry level staff people.” But Burr also said, “I think if this is going to be a disaster—which I think it’s going to be—we ought to enjoy it together with our constituents.” Burr, said Politico, is “flat-out opposed to exempting Congress from the exchange provision.”

Do Americans have a legal recourse if Congress attempts to follow Obama’s suit by granting themselves a sweet deal while gouging the rest of us?

Does a bill represent a legal, binding contract between the government and the people? If so, can suits be brought on grounds of misrepresentation?

Besides legal implications, it’s obvious Democrats know their legislation has been misrepresented to the American people. The positives, such as permitting parents to keep children on their policies through age 26, could have been enacted without thousands of pages of obscure legislation designed to do nothing more than feed the federal spending machine.

The bill should be repealed and Republicans should craft an honest healthcare bill based on input from doctors, nurses, other healthcare workers and taxpayers.

Democrats may offer opponents of socialism a gift. What we do with it is anyone’s guess, especially considering the flawed 2012 election strategy.

Meanwhile, if there's an attorney in the land eager to make a mark, there's opportunity here. Where there's a law, there's a loophole as Democrats have repeatedly proved. An attorney finding such a loophole would not only go down in history as a hero, she or he would likely find unprecedented career benefits.

(Analysis by Kay B. Day/April 25, 2013)

Read from hundreds of articles about ObamaCare and U.S. healthcare in archives at The US Report.

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