Guy Benson

Obamacare giveth and taketh away. Since its adoption in 2010, the president's unpopular health law has handed John Boehner two things. This:



And this:


House Speaker John Boehner’s health insurance premiums will nearly double — and his deductibles will almost triple — as a result of the Affordable Care Act, according to figures provided by his office at POLITICO’s request. “The Boehners are fortunate enough to be able to afford higher costs. But many Americans seeing their costs go up are not,” said Boehner spokesman Brendan Buck. “It’s because of them that this law needs to go.” Boehner and his wife, Debbie, currently pay a monthly premium of $433 for family coverage from Blue Cross Blue Shield, with a deductible of $700, according to his office. Last week, the speaker began shopping for a new plan in the D.C. exchange, a search his office drew attention to by tweeting pictures of him trying to enroll...This is what he found at the market: To keep a similar plan, the Boehners would have to pay $802 per month in premiums, with a deductible of $2,000...The speaker, who is 64, chose to sign up for an individual plan with benefits similar to those he receives under FEHB. That will cost him $449 per month in premiums, and the policy carries a $1,000 deductible. So, he’ll pay more next year for himself than he paid this year for both himself and his wife — and, together, the Boehners will still pay roughly $800 per month in premiums with deductibles in the $2,000 range.


The GOP rode Obamacare to large electoral gains in the 2010 midterm elections, including winning back the House, which they've controlled ever since. One could make the argument that absent Obamacare, Boehner may not have seized the Speaker's gavel -- control of which has surely felt like a mixed blessing at times. Boehner has a reputation for weepiness, so it's not hard to imagine him shedding few tears over major spikes in his family's health costs. These increases are a direct result of a law he's fought to block, delay and repeal since the opening salvo of this debate in 2009. Conservatives had a schadenfreude-laced chuckle over Hill Democrats carping about rising premiums and out-of-pocket expenses last week, but it's important to remember that many Republicans are being socked by this law, too. Democrats' sticker shock is richly deserved. But for GOP members and their aides, Obamacare's rising costs present an acutely painful instance of 'I told you so' politics. Boehner and his wife are affluent and can absorb the rate shock with relatively little pain. The same isn't true for millions of ordinary Americans who were promised lower rates and affordable coverage. Reality is running a decidedly different course for many -- including some of the administration's self-identified "success" stories. I'll leave you with this quote from one of Boehner's counterparts from across the aisle:


House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer says the Obamacare rollout had been a huge disappointment to its supporters..Of the rocky rollout, Hoyer said the process had been “terrible” and “we’re all very disappointed.”


This is the guy who admitted that he knew "keep your plan" was a sack of baloney all along, but repeated it anyway.


Guy Benson

Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Senior Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography