Today's most popular story: Nevada's Harry Reid says 'CNN is wrong' on health care report
Dec. 6, 2013 2:14 PM
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nv, denied a CNN report saying that he was the only top congressional leader to exempt “some of his staff from having to buy insurance through the law's new exchanges.”
GOP House Speaker John Boehner, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell have all directed their staffs to join the exchange, CNN has reported, citing their aides.
“What does top congressional leaders mean?” Reid asked, during an interview in his Reno office this afternoon. “Like me and McConnell?
"No, that is simply not true," Reid said. "Some of the people on my leadership team have done the same thing, following my lead. CNN is wrong.”
Reid mentioned "my leadership team." CNN’s report focused on the No. 1 Democrats and Republicans in the House and Senate.
Reid said he did not read the report but noted that the Las Vegas Review-Journal has published a story about it.
“I did not see the report,” Reid said. “But they had it front page of the R-J and a lot of other people did the same thing.
“All I did was follow the law," Reid said. “The law says that if you have committee staff, leadership staff, they stay where they are. If you have other staff, which is most everyone, they go to the exchanges.
“I followed the Affordable Care Act,” Reid said. “It is the law.”
Some Republicans have been critical of Reid because of the story.
Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, told Steve Tetreault of the Stephens News Bureau (Review-Journal) that Reid’s move “is the clearest example yet of Obamacare’s failures and Washington hypocrisy. His staff worked to pass it and continue to promote it, now they don’t want to be part of it because it’s a disaster.”
Reid mentioned Cruz during the interview in Reno.
"I was really troubled when Ted Cruz complained. That really hurt me to the core,” Reid said. “The only people complaining are those who don’t like the Obamacare. I followed the law.
"And I will also note that there are 150,000 million different families that get their health care through their employees," Reid said. "So should all federal employees, although under Obamacare, my insurance costs me about $4,500 more that it did before. Yes, because it is age-related and it wasn’t like that before.”
Friday, Reid will participate in a Combat Action Medal pinning ceremony for 8 Nevada Air National Guard members who were deployed to Afghanistan in 2002.