Congress wants to take affordable health care away from millions of Americans. But how much do they pay for health care? Not much.
Snopes recently reported on how much members of the House pay while clarifying that “contrary to popular belief, Congressional members do not receive free health care.” What they do pay for is a gold-level Obamacare plan, but, instead of paying over &500 a month for it like other Americans would have to, 72% of the plan is covered by federal subsidies.
As Snopes reports, House members “pay approximately 28 percent of their annual healthcare premiums through pre-tax payroll deductions.” They also have access to “free or low-cost care” provided by the Office of the Attending Physician, and “free medical outpatient care at military facilities” in the D.C. area.
Obamacare is treating them pretty well, so why do they want to destroy a system that is working for them? Because they used to pay even less. As The New Yorker reports, before Obamacare, members of Congress were covered by a “beloved, and by most accounts well-administered, federal plan” called the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP). Lawmakers want to go back to that “comfortable” plan, which is much like Obamacare in that, under FEHBP plans, “no one can be refused, or charged more, for a preëxisting condition” and “dependents under twenty-six are covered,” Frank writes. Sadly, he adds, “twenty million other Americans won’t.”
But even if they did return to FEHBP, they won’t be getting the free coverage they once enjoyed. In fact, they’ll still pay the same as they do now. Only 9% of employers pay %100 of their employees’ coverage. “Since its inception, the Best Companies to Work For list has seen a 74 percent reduction in honorees covering the full cost of their workers’ health insurance,” Forbes reports.
And that’s why Republicans are so intent of repealing Obamacare. They might pay only slightly more now than they used to, but even if Obamacare helps millions of their constituents, they would rather get their few extra dollars back—which probably won’t happen anyway.