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  • House Speaker Paul Ryan speaks at a news conference following a GOP party conference, March 15, 2017.

    House Speaker Paul Ryan speaks at a news conference following a GOP party conference, March 15, 2017. | Photo: AP

The petition seeks to gain one million signatures before it is delivered to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Senator Bernie Sanders.

Under the Affordable Care Act, ACA, all Americans are required to purchase health care, but members of U.S. Congress benefit significantly from a 72 percent government subsidy for health care. A Change.org petitiion hopes to change that.

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As the debate regarding the replacement of the ACA – also known as Obamacare – continues, a Change.org petition targeting Congress has surfaced. The petition, which has more than 500,000 signatures of people, pushes for the removal of health care subsidies for members of Congress and their families. An unsubsidized health care plan that would cost a regular citizen US$500 each month normally costs a member of Congress only US$140 a month.

Started last week by Daniel Jimenez, the petition argues that if members of Congress are certain that the proposed replacement for the ACA is good for Americans, then they should have no concerns about using the same system.

"A lot of members of Congress promote choice as an American value, which is all the more reason for them to have to continue to choose their own health coverage from the free marketplace," Jiminez wrote. "If private health care is good for the American citizen, it should also be good for the people that defend it."

Jiminez said he started the petition after hearing about the proposed changes that would impact millions. The changes made him think about his father who died after detecting he had cancer too late into the process. He says his father did not go to the doctor often because his job did not provide health insurance for him and he couldn't afford to go on his own.

The petition hopes to gain one million signatures before it is delivered to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Senator Bernie Sanders, as well as President Donald Trump. The petition will also be delivered to the House of Representatives and the Senate.

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