- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 24, 2022

The House of Representatives approved a contract last month to provide staffers with Peloton memberships and discounts on the company’s exercise bikes, despite claims from Democratic leaders that no deal was ever inked. 

Documents obtained exclusively by The Washington Times show that the House’s chief administrative officer signed a yearlong agreement with Peloton on April 13. As part of the contract, the CAO agreed to pay the company $21,731 upfront for the partnership. 

The contract’s existence contradicts claims House Democrats have made on the topic in recent days. House Administration Committee Chair Zoe Lofgren told The Washington Times last week there was never any official partnership with Peloton

“A proposal was made to provide all House staff with a digital Peloton subscription,” said Ms. Lofgren, California Democrat. “Upon reviewing the proposal, I rejected it.” 

The contract signed by the CAO and Peloton stipulates the deal was in effect starting on April 13. 

The House Administration Committee did not immediately return requests for comment on this story. 

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The contract stipulates that CAO would pay $9.99 per month for each staffer that signed up for the Peloton app, which has thousands of workouts and does not require the company’s equipment to access. Under terms of the deal, the House also agreed to pay the standard $39 per month for individuals that signed up for Peloton’s all-access subscription, which requires the company’s exercise equipment to use. 

The market rate for Peloton’s app membership is $12.99 per month. The all-access subscription retails for $39 a month. 

As part of the deal, staffers and the House’s recreational facilities would have been eligible to receive a significant discount on the cost of Peloton equipment. Staffers would have been able to purchase a Peloton bike for $1,145, rather than the retail rate of $1,495. 

A similar markdown was offered on the company’s high-end exercise bike, the Peloton Bike+, and its treadmill variant, the Peloton Tread. Staffers would have been eligible to purchase the Peloton Bike+ for $1,895, while the Peloton Tread would have cost $2,345. Both retail for $2,495. 

Overall, the contract’s terms and rates are similar to that offered by Peloton to other corporations and businesses. Peloton did not return requests for comment on this story. 

The House’s partnership with Peloton was set to launch on May 16. CAO even drafted an email to staffers and Capitol Police announcing the new benefit.

The launch was canceled earlier this month after the partnership leaked and bad publicity ensued. It is unclear whether the cancellation will cost taxpayers fees or penalties.

Republicans say the situation only serves to underscore the elitist sentiments of Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California and other members of the Democratic leadership.

“This congress will go down in history as the out-of-touch Congress,” said House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, California Republican. “Instead of trying to help struggling families, Democrats are plundering their pocketbooks to pay for Pelosi’s Peloton membership.”

• Haris Alic can be reached at halic@washingtontimes.com.

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