If Michele Bachmann Lost Her Insurance, It's Because of a GOP Amendment

The Atlantic

Michele Bachmann went on CNN's The Situation Room on Thursday night to talk about — what else — Obamacare. She told Wolf Blitzer that she "lost" her insurance under the ACA, and will be "forced to go on the website and purchase the health insurance plan from the D.C. health exchange." She's picking up on the cancelled-plan meme, and both Blitzer and her fellow guest Paul Begala let her do it. But Bachmann isn't losing her insurance in the same way that average citizens getting cancellation letters are. 

If Bachmann had government employee insurance (her office did not respond to requests for comment), she is losing it because of Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley's amendment to Obamacare. The Grassley amendment requires all members of Congress and their staffs buy into the exchanges, supposedly so that Congress has a personal stake in the efficacy of the health care law. Grassley proposed the amendment in 2010 as a challenge to Democrats, but it ended up passing with bipartisan support. Issues surrounding the amendment were a major focus of the shutdown negotiations — Sens. David Vitter and Ted Cruz tried to pass an amendment that would remove employer contributions to congressional staff health care, as a way to undermine the health care law. 

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But Bachmann didn't acknowledge any of this on The Situation Room — she just talked about the slow website. "Are you kidding? I'm not going to waste an hour on that thing ... I'm waiting until they fix this thing. I'm not going to sit there and frustrate myself." Blitzer just blinked at her: "I don't understand. Explain this to me... You and your husband are not going to have health insurance?" 

There's also the possibility that Bachmann had health insurance through her husband — but again, her office could not comment on what kind of insurance she's "lost." Either way, Bachmann insists, "We were just fine before." 

This article was originally published at http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2013/11/if-michele-bachmann-lost-her-insurance-its-because-gop-amendment/71645/

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