Sen. Vitter: 'Harry Reid Is Delusional'

Craig Bannister
By Craig Bannister | May 9, 2014 | 11:53 AM EDT

"Harry Reid is delusional," Sen. David Vitter said in response to Reid's claim that "David Vitter said he believes that people who work here, for us, (in Congress) shouldn't have health care."

Sen. Reid (D-Nev.) made the claim, and then defended it, on MSNBC yesterday when discussing legislation from Senator David Vitter (R-La.) to eliminate the special Obamacare healthcare subsidy exclusive to Members of Congress, their staff, and the Administration.

Sen. Vitter twice called Reid "delusional" in a statement provided to regarding his reaction to Reid's claim that he had said he didn't want members of Congress to have health care:

"Harry Reid is delusional. Congress passed a law that says Congress must buy healthcare coverage on the exchange - and my bill forces Congress to live by the law it passed.

"It simply eliminates the huge healthcare subsidy that Washington elite like Reid enjoy at the expense of taxpayers - and that no other American at the same income level can get. Reid's delusion is exactly the problem; he thinks he's entitled to a special Obamacare exemption and he is clearly scared to vote on my amendment."

Sen. Vitter's office explains that he just wants to eliminate the special taxpayer-funded subsidies for Congress, while allowing them to qualify for the same subsidies available to any other American:

Vitter has been pushing his legislation, which would require all Members of Congress, all Congressional staff, the President, Vice-President, and all political appointees within the administration to purchase their health insurance on the Obamacare Exchange and receive the same amount of financial support from tax credits or subsidies as any American would outside of Washington. In most cases, that is zero.

Currently members of Congress and their staff members are still eligible to receive taxpayer funded subsidies ($5,000 for an individual or $10,000 for a family) to pay for their health care. Those same subsidies are not available to any other American who are purchasing the healthcare on the exchange.

Editor's Add-On: National Review has also questioned Sen. Reid's mental health. In a piece from May 9 about Reid calling Koch Industries one of the main causes of global warming, it noted that Reid's recent speeches "sound like they ought to be coming from a man wearing a bathrobe in front of a liquor store in Cleveland."