Your votes, your voice

Jan. 22, 2014

State Sen. Leah Vukmir, R-Wauwatosa

· Vukmir is advocating for a bill that would offer special-needs students government-funded vouchers to attend public school in another district, or a charter or private school. The vouchers, which could be used next school-year if approved, would be worth up to $14,000.

U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin

· Baldwin called for increased government funding of logging on federal forest lands, to "create a more stable supply of timber," according to a story by Gannett Wisconsin Media.

U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Osh Kosh

· Johnson filed a lawsuit in federal court Jan. 6 to stop members of Congress and their staffs from receiving government subsidies on their health insurance, which they are now required to buy through the marketplace set up by the Affordable Care Act. He is suing the Office of Personnel Management, which ruled that the government could continue to help pay for their health insurance under the new law. In a letter in the Wall street Journal, Johnson said the policy gave lawmakers "special treatment" after he said lawmakers decided they should only be eligible for the income-based subsidies available to all citizens.

"Unlike millions of their countrymen who have lost coverage and must now purchase insurance through an exchange, members and their staffs will receive an employer contribution to help pay for their new plans," Johnson wrote.

U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner

· Sensenbrenner criticized Johnson's decision to file a lawsuit over the Affordable Care Act, calling it a "political stunt."

"I am committed to repealing Obamacare, but the employer contribution he's attacking is nothing more than a standard benefit that most private and all federal employees receive – including the President," Sensenbrenner wrote in a statement. " Success in the suit will mean that Congress will lose some of its best staff and will be staffed primarily by recent college graduates who are still on their parents' insurance."

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