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Eliminating FEHBP? Not so fast.

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Sen. Charles Grassley has introduced a health care amendment that would eliminate the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program, but feds shouldn’t panic that they’ll be losing their health coverage as recent news stories have hinted.

Grassley’s amendment would have ended FEHBP and required feds to purchase insurance through state-based exchanges, just as average civilians would. But a modified version of the amendment accepted Tuesday as part of the Senate Finance Committee chairman’s mark weakens the language, allowing federal workers the option of leaving the FEHBP and enrolling in state exchanges.

Grassley, R-Iowa, offered his amendment to draw attention to a main point pushed by Republicans — why should federal employees receive coverage that’s much better than anything that would be offered through a public plan or a state-based health exchange? If a state-based exchange is good enough for the average taxpayer, why shouldn’t feds participate?

A Grassley staffer said the original amendment requiring feds to enroll in exchanges is a matter of fairness.

Sen. Grassley’s amendment to require elected officials and federal employees to buy insurance through exchanges is meant to apply the same standards to elected officials and federal employees as everyone else.”

The Senate Finance Committee’s markup of a draft health care bill is expected to continue into next week. We’ll keep you posted on any news affecting feds.

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Comments

  1. BeechF33A Says:
    September 28th, 2009 at 11:51 am

    No way.

  2. nledgerwood Says:
    September 29th, 2009 at 12:54 pm

    Senator Grassley (and other legislators that attempt to alter Federal employees benefits) should concentrate on helping those citizen that need assistance. I suspect the vast majority of Federal workers don’t appreciate and haven’t requested Congress to modifying the FEHBP.

    Federal employees and other employees with private insurance should not be required to sacrifice their benefits because other citizens don’t have health care insurance. Senator Grassley should concentrate on determining how best to provide affordable health care FOR THOSE INDIVIDUALS THAT NEED HELP. Otherwise, butt out!

    “Fairness” in a democratic society is being free to work for those things you feel are important. “Fairness” is not having something you have worked hard for taken away. There is nothing “Fair” about forcing anyone to participate in a public plan or a state-based health exchange.

  3. HOWARD Says:
    December 11th, 2009 at 5:30 pm

    For either our present FEHB or our future plans why can’t we have a 3-tiered premium structure (self, self + one, self and famiy), like the FEDVIP covering dental vision? Why should a 2 member family pay the same as a family with 3 or more members.

  4. Kieth Says:
    February 26th, 2010 at 6:12 am

    Eliminate the FEHBP. Republicans are the worst bunch of hypocrites I have ever seen. I am self employed and pay my own way but its time to give this elitist group a wake up call. The more I experience the world the less respect I have for Republicans. Just a bad bunch of people with a narrow view of the world. Only interested in getting richer and worshiping money,this is what they stand for,nothing more.

  5. RB Canon Says:
    March 22nd, 2010 at 12:43 am

    Sorry, feds, I thought you were OUR public servants, but I think it has become the other way around. Frankly, I’m tired of paying for your vacations, sick leave, day care, complete job security, student loans, and health insurance! Life is hard – Grow up! We and most of the people we know have spent a lifetime in private occupation and have never asked or received any help for what we didn’t earn. Perks were rare and far between, but at least we didn’t steal legally from others who were also struggling. Quit freeloading and expecting those of us who live frugally to pay your bills while you have Iphones and SUV’s. By the way, Kieth, I am a Republican. If you will do a little research, you will find that democrats are a much wealthier lot than we are, particularly those in Washington, but research reveals that Republicans are far less selfish, and give far more than liberals give to help the less fortunate. Do a little homework next time before calling Republicans hypocrites. We do try to hold the purse strings pretty tightly to protect our country. I believe it was Margaret Thatcher who said it best: Socialism works fine until it runs out of other peoples’ money!

  6. Kathy Says:
    May 12th, 2010 at 5:30 am

    It amazes me how government employees who work for the do called civillians get better benifits . Including insurance. Seems federal workers are sectioned out for privilidged treatment.HMMM.Oh and it seems the whole Bill is going to cost 115billion for what..MORE BEURACRACY AND FEDERAL WORKERS..Wonder where the money will come from. I am sure we will see this union group as well as some other colorfull groups in the street swhen the money is gone and we have bankrupted our country..LIKE GREESE

  7. THe Real Reason Says:
    November 16th, 2010 at 6:07 am

    SENATOR GRASSLEY: “A Grassley staffer said the original amendment requiring feds to enroll in exchanges is a matter of fairness.”

    What is fair about abrogating the contract the government made with federal employees under the FEBHP program.

    What happened to “not one dime” of current taxpayers will have to pay for Obama Care? Is this whole Obama (Senate) Health Care law a scam prepertrated on the American People?

    Senator Grassley is up for election again in six years. Is he really a “Democratic sheep in wolf’s clothing”? I suggest he STOP sounding like a DEMOCRAT – as he has previously done while the Senate Finance Committee on Health Care was in session – chaired by Senator Baucus.

    I worked for 37 years to get my retirement benefits – including FEBHP. Unless Senator Grassley is really a socialist egaliterian Socialist, like Obama and many Democrats – he should listen to the American People – and follow the presidents statement: “if you like your health care program, you will be able to keep it.”

    Federal employees serve the legitimate purpose of doing work for the people of the United States – just like Members of Congress and the president do. NOW THAT SENATOR GRASSLEY has been re-elected for another six year term – he should not forget all the millions of complaints against the Health Care Bill that a majority of Americans railed against – and in the process, showed their discontent by taking back the HOUSE – and part of the Senate. It would seem that Senator Grassley has a unrealistic view of fairness – taking from one group to pay for another.

  8. JIm Purdy Says:
    November 24th, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    Maybe it is time that all elected officials receive no health care or pension. Those positions we not ment to be life time jobs. It would get rid of the dead wood that sits on the hill year after year doing nothing such as Grassley, Dingle, Rangle Ect. No one has the kahunas to introduce such a bill if they did it would die.

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