Lots of conservative lawmakers hate Obamacare. Rep. Louie Gohmert is putting his money where his mouth is.
The Tyler Republican gave up his health insurance for 2014, asserting that the president’s signature health care law, the Affordable Care Act, has made coverage too expensive.
“Other people are going to see what I did when I looked into health insurance for my wife and me: that the deductible rate, it doubled, about $3,000 to $6,000, and our policy was going to go from about $300 to about $1,500 a month,” he said during a recent radio interview with Trey Graham, a pastor at First Melissa Baptist Church in Collin County. “I actually don’t have insurance right now, so thank you very much, Obamacare.”
Gohmert’s salary as a member of Congress is $174,000 a year. And his calculations ignore the hefty employer subsidy for which he is eligible — almost $950 per month. He says he will pay the tax that takes effect this year for those without insurance — 1 percent of his annual income.
Health care experts say Gohmert is taking a big risk. He’s 60. His wife, Kathy Gohmert, is 59. At that stage of life, medical expenses are common and unpredictable.
But for months, he’s said he would rather give up his government-supplied insurance than accept any government subsidy. If he did take the subsidy available to federal lawmakers and their aides, he would probably pay a monthly premium of about $600 — far less than the figure he cited on Graham’s show, which aired Sunday.
Here’s some news that has to be causing serious cognitive dissonance among America’s normally very pro-Israel religious right, as the Israeli government decides to pay for all abortions for women aged 20 to 33, regardless of circumstance.
Until now, subsidized abortions for women of all ages were available in medical emergencies or in case of rape and sexual abuse. Women under the age of 20 or over 40 were also eligible for abortion funding even when the reason was personal.
Despite the new funding, which was recently approved as part of Israel’s state-subsidized “health basket” for 2014, women will still have to appear before a state committee before terminating a pregnancy.
Image via MHA Online.