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Public Statements

Health Benefits for Members of Congress and Their Staff

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. PASCRELL. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to correct the record regarding the health benefits for Members of Congress and their staff.

Recently, many on the other side have been falsely claiming that Congress is trying to exempt itself from the Affordable Care Act in an effort to distract the public from their failure to do their job and keep our government open. The fact is that Members of Congress and their staff are the only people who are required by law to give up current employer-provided health care and go into the exchanges.

I support this because I know the exchanges will provide all Americans, including Congress and its staff, quality, affordable health insurance. The exemption my friends want to get rid of is ending Congress' employer contribution, which all Federal employees currently receive.

Mr. Speaker, my Republican colleagues probably have, like many of us do, young staffers working in their offices that make around $25,000 a year. We are going to ask these devoted civil servants to pay $5,000 to $12,000 more per year for health insurance than they currently pay just to score a cheap political point?

Ask the Speaker. He supports maintaining this contribution. Case closed.

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