GOP senators demand answers from White House on ObamaCare promotion

Alexander, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee ranking member, lead nearly all of the GOP Senate caucus in writing a letter to White House Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler.

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“We write to ask for information about the activities being undertaken by twenty or more federal agencies with no responsibilities under the President’s health care law in the implementation and promotion of that law, specifically about what the agencies are doing, what funds the agencies are spending, and what authorities the agencies are using,” the letter stated.

The senators said they were prompted to send the letter after reports that the Food and Drug Administration, Department of Education and the Department of Labor, among others, were promoting ObamaCare, also known as the Affordable Care Act.

The lawmakers said they want to know what funds these agencies are using since Congress did not authorize that spending.

“There is a cost to the taxpayers for each and every one of these actions,” the letter stated. “[Health and Human Services] has requested additional money to implement the health care law, and Congress denied that request. HHS now appears to be evading Congress’ constitutional power of the purse by using unrelated resources and authorities dedicated to other missions.”

In the letter, the senators questioned how the administration could complain about sequester cuts and yet still find money in various agencies to pay for ObamaCare promotions.

“Given that the Administration spent the last several months warning of alleged catastrophe from cutting approximately $85.3 billion out of a $3 trillion budget as part of sequestration, it is particularly surprising that unrelated resources, which previously could not be reduced, are now being used to implement or promote the health care law,” the senators wrote. “It is troubling that taxpayer funds are being used in this way without notice to the Congress by each agency involved.”

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protest during brief House session MORE (R-Maine), Orrin HatchOrrin HatchTreasury officials to meet with lawmakers on inversion rules A bipartisan bright spot we can’t afford to pass up: child welfare reform Medicare trust fund running out of money fast MORE (R-Utah), Roy BluntRoy BluntOvernight Finance: Senate sends Puerto Rico bill to Obama | Treasury, lawmakers to meet on tax rules | Obama hits Trump on NAFTA | Fed approves most banks' capital plans Overnight Healthcare: Sanders, Clinton ally jockey for health gavel Overnight Tech: Facebook's changes worry publishers | First stage of spectrum auction ends | Clinton recruits from Silicon Valley MORE (R-Mo.), Pat RobertsPat RobertsUSDA extends comment period for 'certified organic' animal rule Senate contradicts itself on Gitmo GOP senators propose sending ISIS fighters to Gitmo MORE (R-Kan.), John HoevenJohn HoevenDeath threats against senators remained on Twitter for 2 weeks Senate panel approves funding boost for TSA Overnight 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