Congressional brain drain … say, what?

I’ve been meaning to write about this for awhile – and since it’s back in the news, I’ll take my shot.



You’ve probably heard that Congress and Congressional staffs – as part of the ObamaCare law – were required to get their health insurance on the newly forming ObamaCare exchanges and give up some of their generous government subsidies.

More specifically:

The ObamaCare Act applied to Congress the same civil-rights employment and labor laws that lawmakers had required everyday citizens to abide by.

With some lapses, it’s worked well to defuse public outrage about “one law for thee, one law for me” congressional behavior.

In 2009, Senator Chuck Grassley decided that the principle deserved to be embedded in Obamacare, and he was able to insert a provision requiring all members of Congress and their staffs to get insurance through the Obamacare health exchanges.

“The more that Congress experiences the laws it passes, the better,” said Grassley.

Most employment lawyers interpreted that to mean that the taxpayer-funded federal health-insurance subsidies dispensed to those on Congress’s payroll — which now range from $5,000 to $11,000 a year — would have to end.


Makes sense to me – make them eat their own cooking.

But, there’s much more to this story …


Democratic and Republican staffers alike were furious, warning that Congress faced a “brain drain” if the provision stuck.

President Obama used the quiet of the August recess to personally order the Office of Personnel Management, which supervises federal employment issues, to interpret the law so as to retain the generous congressional benefits. Source

This dispensation from Obamacare may be the only abuse that Republicans won’t criticize.

Is that because it was perpetrated on the behalf of the 11,000 people who work on Capitol Hill.  Source

The obvious arrogance and hypocrisy isn’t what sets me off … I expect that out of our politicians.

What I want to know is why there are 11,000 people working on Capitol Hill.

You know, the Capitol Hill where absolutely nothing gets done.

If you’re not doing anything, why do you need 11,000 people not doing it?

That’s silly.

Or, if you’re a Senator or Congressman who simply pulls the party lever on every vote, why do you need a bunch of staffers doing research and writing position papers.

Regardless of what they find or report, Senator Blowhard is still going to pull the party lever.

So, why bother?

And, regarding the brain drain …

What evidence is there that there are any brains to be drained?

Even if they are smart people, who cares if they get drained.

They rarely make anything happen … and when they do, they just end up hacking off most of the citizens they’re supposed to represent.

Brain drain.

Gimme a break.

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One Response to “Congressional brain drain … say, what?”

  1. Andrew L. Says:

    Hey, have you displaced your anger much recently?

    The House of Reps increased its size to 435 in 1929 when the population of the nation was 121 million and Federal spending was 3.68 percent of a GDP of just $103 billion.

    Now the same body represents a population of 314 million with Federal spending at 20+ percent of a ~$16 trillion GDP. Leg. branch also consumes .1 percent of Federal outlays, so Pareto is somewhere laughing at you.

    The fundamental truth is that the Legislative branch is woefully outmatched when it comes to controlling the Executive branch. The remedy to out-of-control government is a stronger legislature – the very reason why the framers made it Article I.

    The argument that the nation’s laws should apply equally to Congress is sound. The hyperbole ad hominem that follows is categorically off target. As it turns out, if Americans don’t like their Congress, that is their own fault.

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