Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, says his health insurance was canceled when Obamacare was rolled out and his options in the state marketplace are so expensive he’s better off not buying coverage.
“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,” Gohmert said during a local radio interview Sunday. “I actually don’t have insurance right now, so thank you very much, Obamacare.”
For months, Gohmert has said that he wouldn’t accept special government subsidies available to lawmakers. If he did, he would have a monthly premium of about $600.
“I lost my health care. I liked it OK, but I didn’t get to keep it,” Gohmert said. “I couldn’t afford to go up four or five times what I was paying and double my deductible, and so I’m better off with just setting money aside for health care and paying the penalty.”
Without coverage, the 60-year-old Congressman and his 59-year-old wife, Kathy Gohmert, could be taking a huge risk.
His aides did not disclose whether he receives free outpatient care at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center or other Washington-area military facilities, which is free to all members of Congress. His wife would not be eligible.
“By not obtaining insurance, you are just rolling the dice, gambling that you are not going to get sick or going to get hit by a car,” Sabrina Corlette, a research professor at Georgetown University’s Health Policy Institute, told the Dallas Morning News. “Most financial advisers and most independent experts would say it’s a wise move to obtain insurance and basically a no-brainer if you have an employer who is willing to kick in about 70 percent of the cost of your premium.”