Home » Coburn OKs Obama Nominee For OPM Director Katherine Archuleta After Congressional Staffers Get Obamacare Waiver
There is much to like about Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK). His annual Wastebook project has been helpful in exposing wasteful government spending. However, I pause as his recent release of a hold he had placed on Barack Obama’s nominee, Katherine Archuleta, to head the Office of Personal Management (OPM) after a proposed ruling allowed the federal government to subsidize health insurance premiums of Congressional staffers, as well as members of Congress.
Coburn blocked Archuleta’s nomination last week after a Senate committee approved her nomination. The approved nomination was to be “an attempt to force OPM to explain its position” on Obamacare subsidies.
Fox News reports on the ruling that led to Coburn’s unblocking Archuleta’s nomination.
In a ruling issued on Wednesday, U.S. lawmakers and their staffs will continue to receive a federal contribution toward the health insurance that they must purchase through soon-to-open exchanges created by President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law.
The decision by the Office of Personnel Management, with Obama’s blessing, will prevent the largely unintended loss of healthcare benefits for 535 members of the Senate and House of Representatives and thousands of Capitol Hill staff.
Reuters reported that the ruling, which is to be published in the Federal Register on Thursday, OPM deemed that the federal government could still subsidize 75% of the cost of the insurance premiums of plans Congressional aides must now purchase on government-run exchanges. Legislators and their aides will not be eligible for tax credits to offset their premiums.
Breitbart’s Tony Lee adds:
Under Obamacare, lawmakers and staff “must purchase plans on the exchanges for coverage,” but the law did not allow for the federal government to subsidize the new insurance plans as lawmakers wanted Congressmen and their aides to play by the same rules as their constituents. Lawmakers though, feared aides would leave Congress because individuals and families would be forced to pay $5,500 and $11,000 more, respectively, for unsubsidized insurance on the government exchanges. Last week, Congress and President Barack Obama indicated they had solved the problem and a ruling would be forthcoming.
One thing we do know in all of this is that the American citizen is to be treated differently than those elected and their staff. We also know that Senator Coburn has demonstrated that he is willing to allow Obama to place anyone he wants in positions of power, as long as Coburn and his staff don’t endure the consequences of legislation that affect his constituents. In other words, “I’ll scratch your back, if you scratch mine.”
Enough of this brazen arrogance to look out for self rather than the people that elected you. Shame on you Senator Coburn and shame on any member of Congress who does such things!