Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
September 21, 2014

Senators, Staff Told Not to Enroll in Obamacare Exchanges Yet

A memo to Senate employees circulated late Monday is telling members and staff not to sign up for health care benefits with the new Obamacare exchanges until they receive more guidance.

“As the [Office of Personnel Management] Regulations are not final and we are awaiting further information, Members and staff are advised that they should delay enrolling in health insurance plans until we are able to offer further guidance as to how they should enroll in these insurance plans for 2014,” the Senate Disbursing Office said in an email blast obtained by CQ Roll Call. “Premature enrollment could adversely impact eligibility for the employer premium contribution.”

Staffers in both parties have many unanswered questions about how the health care law’s requirements that they purchase health care through the exchanges are implemented. The exchanges are set to open to the public on Oct. 1.

There are several GOP-led efforts to prevent the OPM from paying a share of the insurance benefits to the exchange. Sen David Vitter, R-La., has been seeking an opportunity to offer an amendment to block the payment of the employer contributions, and Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., is exploring the possibility of filing a lawsuit.

  • emceemc

    I am disappointed in the Administration. This is another self-inflicted wound.

    Am I to understand that Obama is considering signing a Republican bill forbidding subsidies to Senators and staffers? Is the world supposed to stand still while a Republican “explores the possibility of a lawsuit”?

    Get the damn thing up and running. Next time you feel the urge to waive or delay something first, think of how the Republicans will portray it, and second, don’t do it.

    • Layla

      You seriously expected an idiot with NO EXPERIENCE to do this right?

  • annjohns

    The bill passed included Federal employees being a part of the Exchange and did not provide for taxpayers subsidies. The average pay for these employees is $170,000. Let them pay just as the law states….or delay the whole thing and fix the MANY unintended consequences in the shudden…

    • Layla

      I agree. It’s ALL or NONE. That’s the way America is looking at this. Miss that message and you deserve to be DONE.

  • Layla

    Americans are hearing how great this is and at the same time watching Congress exempt itself. Does ANYBODY there have a clue about the millions who are out of work out here? Seriously? Pay for it with WHAT MONEY???? Our wonderful government makes 3-4 times the wages of the average American family and you won’t be covered by this. That’s all we needed to know.. It speaks volumes. Done with my party, PERMANENTLY.

  • Rumionemore

    They have an excellent health plan. Why would they sign up for Obamacare? Even the really rich ones, such as Pelosi, will probably keep her current plan. Actually, I think they all who voted “yea” for it should be required to sign up for it.

  • redrover

    If it is good for us it is good for them and vice versa……I am sick of all this cloak and dagger stuff Obama comes up with and then acts like he is such a saint, when he is a devil. We all have to revolt and not sign up for it period! All the employers are going to avoid paying and letting people go, so they don’t have to or get illegals and pay them le It is a travesty for the whole country!!! What they said it would cost a month is way out of my budget…I have never been able to afford health care and will not sign up for this. They can go fly a kite ……..it is time we show that idiot and his crew they are nuts and anti-Americans.

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