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November 06, 2007


I haven't fully researched the issue, but it's not immediately clear to me that health care benefits would be treated as "compensation" under the 27th Amendment. Members of Congress receive all sorts of benefits incident to their jobs--e.g., parking at the Capitol, parking at National Airport, use of gyms, and until fairly recently the ability to convert unused campaign funds to personal use.

Would "compensation" include all these benefits or be limited to salary and possibly deferred compensation? It's an interesting question.

Of course John Edwards often makes hyperbolic promises, so this may be simply another example.

Wow, you mean it's unconstitutional?

Or do you mean you could look at it as unconstitutional?

So, like, maybe he's correct?

I think Edwards' threat is unconstitutional for the simple reason that the President on his/her own cannot choose to ignore benefits enacted into law. To take away Conbgress's health care, s/he would have to get the agreement of Congress, which seems unlikely. (I'm assuming that Congressional health benefits don't end automatically at some fixed date.)

David, what Edwards is saying is that on his first day in office he would submit a bill ending health care coverage for the President, the Congress, and all political appointees on July 20th, 2009, unless by that date they pass health reform that complies with his four "non-negotiable" principles. How likely it is that Congress would pass such a bill is unknown, though if it's a Democratic Congress, Edwards might well get his way in the first days of the Administration.

The largest obstacle to Edwards' plan isn't Congress, it's someone called Hillary Rodham Clinton. Edwards may be prettier than Hillary, but politically he's not fit to carry her jockstrap.

Now Rob, don't be so mean spirited.

Rob, thanks for explaining Edwards' proposal.

I'm glad Rob lets the mainstream media decide what's important about the candidates...savvy!

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