One of the more irritating aspects of the recent government-shutdown unpleasantness has been the “I told you so” lamentations of the defund/delay plan’s critics — as if they had anything approaching a workable alternative. I highly recommend Andrew McCarthy’s weekend column. It’s a devastating takedown of the notion that Obamacare repeal is just a multi-election Republican winning spree away. Even if we were able to achieve a Republican perfect storm, sweeping the Senate in 2014 then taking the White House in 2016, does anyone foresee a filibuster-proof Republican senate majority? Isn’t the best-case outcome of that strategy a tweaking of
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, under fire for the glitch-filled rollout of Obamacare, intends to testify on Capitol Hill “as early as next week,” according to an HHS spokeswoman. “We fully intend for the secretary and other HHS officials to testify before Congress as early as next week, as they have numerous times in the past, but nothing is confirmed at this time,” HHS spokeswoman Joanne Peters said. “We have always indicated to the committee that she intended to testify but that she had a scheduling conflict,” Peters added. “We continue to work with them to find a
People who rely on food stamps to support their household budgets are going to get a 13 percent cut in their benefits on November 1, as a key provision in the 2009 stimulus expires. But don´t worry, low income people: the USDA website has tips on how you can avoid debilitating malnutrition. Please note: this reduction is not related to the Republican-backed push to slice $4 billion out of funding for what´s technically known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP. Instead, it´s due to the expiration of part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. That bill (better known
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said Sunday that he takes umbrage at Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-Texas) assertion that Republicans could have banded together and successfully defunded Obamacare in the government shutdown but instead were responsible for losing the fight. “Well, there’s a lot of ironies here because there were some of us and Republican senators that fought for 25 days against Obamacare up until Christmas eve morning. Campaigned across America in 2012 saying that as we elect Mitt Romney, we will repeal and replace Obamacare. We were the leaders in the fight during that time. The point is, though, that it
Arizona is defying a federal order to eliminate apartments for deaf seniors at a housing complex built specifically -- for the deaf. "I think it´s about the most ridiculous thing I´ve heard in a while," said Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., who attempted to negotiate the impasse. "There are a lot of stories of out-of-control regulators, but this just seems to be going to the extreme." A 2005 federal study found that the U.S. had virtually no affordable housing for the deaf. So the federal government helped build Apache ASL Trails, a 75-unit apartment building in Tempe, Ariz., designed specifically for the deaf.
President Barack Obama delivered remarks Monday at the White House addressing the mounting criticism of the troubled rollout of the Obamacare website. Here are the 10 notable quotes. 1. “Nobody’s madder than me about the fact that the website isn’t working as well as it should, which means it’s gonna get fixed.” 2. “You can get your questions answered by real people, 24 hours a day, in 150 different languages. The phone number for these call centers is: 1-800-318-2596. I want to repeat that: 1-800-318-2596…although I admit that the wait times probably might go up a little bit now that I’ve read the number out loud on national television.”
After her husband died, Mary Veronica Santiago fell behind on her bills, and the creditors began to call. So two years ago, she took refuge in bankruptcy, hoping to have her debts wiped away. But far from providing a fresh start and peace of mind, the Chapter 7 filing thrust Mrs. Santiago, 79, who lives in the East Village, into the center of a case that bankruptcy lawyers say poses a major risk to her and the millions of other New Yorkers who live in rent-stabilized apartments. The issue, pending before the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, is
Late last week news broke of a connection between grenades illegally trafficked from the U.S. into Mexico by Jean Baptiste Kingery and the murder of Mexican police officers. Years ago, Kingery was suspected of trafficking parts for grenades into Mexico and then building explosives for cartels. An incident report detailing a fire fight between Mexican police and cartel members states, "Jalisco State Police Officers murdered during a shooting with members of the Cartel de Jalisco Nueva Generacion in Tepatitlan, Jalisoc, MX. In the late hours of October 10, 2013, officers with the Jalisco State Police engaged in a shooting with members
Of the 13 people who flanked President Obama during his speech defending Obamacare in the Rose Garden Monday, just three had successfully registered for the new Obamacare exchanges. A list of the people who joined Obama on stage provided by the White House included people who have or “will” benefit from Obamacare, small business owners, representatives from “partner organizations,” and new registrants. The three people who were able to register included: Janice Baker, who introduced the president and as of last week was the only person to have successfully enrolled in health care coverage through Delaware’s state exchange; David Hall, an IT
Sue Hobart, a bridal florist from Massachusetts, couldn´t understand why she suddenly developed headaches, ringing in her ears, insomnia and dizziness to the point of falling "flat on my face" in the driveway. "I thought I was just getting older and tired," said the 57-year-old from Falmouth. Months earlier, in the summer of 2010, three wind turbines had been erected in her town, one of which runs around the clock, 1,600 feet from her home. "I didn´t put anything to the turbines -- we heard it and didn´t like the thump, thump, thump and didn´t like seeing them, but we
Yes, really. As you read this morning, I was expecting a some perfunctory contrition and token acceptance of responsibility from President Bystander during his Obamacare remarks in the Rose Garden today. I was wrong. The appearance was more of a pep rally, replete with upbeat promises and applauding supporters. Aides might as well have hung a large "mission accomplished" banner over Obama´s head. The fact that the Obamacare websites -- a core element of the law functioning -- are in total shambles and won´t be fixed for many weeks or even months were all but shrugged off as an afterthought.
Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) calls Obamacare a “very small and modest bill,” even though he previously said he failed to see the point in reading it "if it´s a thousand pages" without lawyers. During an Oct. 17 appearance on “Democracy Now!” Conyers criticized lawmakers who had partially shut down the government in the fight against Obamacare, expressing concern about what might happen when a single-payer system is proposed. [Video] “It´s just unimaginable the actions they would turn to, to get their way on a very small and modest bill – Obamacare. We’re talking about universal health care for everybody –
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) said although Republicans have had "tactical differences" on how to get rid of Obamacare, they all share the same goal. He suggested that Republicans will run against the president´s signature health care law in 2014. "Obamacare is the worst piece of legislation that´s been passed in the last half century -- the single biggest step in the direction of Europeanizing our country," McConnell told CBS´s "Face the Nation" on Sunday. "We need to get rid of it. And if the American people will give us a majority in the Senate and a new president,
Bruce Bartlett, who served as domestic policy adviser to President Ronald Reagan and a Treasury official for President George H.W. Bush, told MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, host of “All in with Chris Hayes,” on Friday that the Republican Party has been “hijacked by crazy people, stupid people.” “I don’t understand why they’re so afraid to speak out and say that their party has been hijacked by crazy people, stupid people,” Bartlett said referring to the Republican Party. Bartlett, who is currently a columnist and blogger for the Fiscal Times, said he wondered why former Treasury secretaries who worked for Republican administrations
Republican Sen. Ted Cruz received an eight-minute standing ovation upon his return to Texas this past weekend, despite an extended, hostile campaign from Democrats and the mainstream media to portray him as a dangerous extremist. “After two months in Washington, it’s great to be back in America,” Cruz said Saturday to approximately 750 people at an appearance in a San Antonio hotel ballroom, enjoying an eight-minute standing ovation for his dogged efforts to defund or delay Obamacare in the recent continuing-resolution budget fight. Cruz also criticized members of his own Senate caucus for ”failing to stand with House Republicans against
Obamacare came under fire Monday morning on Morning Joe, with the panel pointing out that the Obama administration has been too secretive about the healthcare program. “They are lying about the numbers of who have enrolled, the numbers of people who have made the process complete, the numbers of people who have actually signed up,” said show mainstay Mike Barnicle, Barnicle added that the administration has had two years to put the website and program together and that its failure is not just “unacceptable” as the administration has said it is, but rather it is “outrageous.”
President Obama invited a number of people to stand behind him as he delivered his speech on the state of Obamacare at the White House Monday morning. One of them, Janice Baker, a small business owner from Delaware, introduced the president, and Obama spoke of Baker and the others gathered there as people who have benefited from Obamacare. But after reading the White House-provided descriptions of each of those behind the president, it´s clear the administration was stretching to present people who, beyond supporting Obamacare, have actually gained from it in any tangible way. For example, a Pennsylvania man named Malik
SPARKS — 10:17 a.m. update: Helen Denkel, a San Francisco-based spokeswoman for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, said at 10:10 a.m. “ATF is not involved at this time.” The shooting was reported at 7:15 a.m. The Reno Gazette-Journal has reported extensively on the fact that the Reno ATF office has been understaffed since 2011 because of a rift with the U.S. Attorney’s office in Reno. 9:50 a.m. update: Kyle Nucum, 13, said he witnessed another student shoot his teacher at Sparks Middle School Monday morning. Nucum said his teacher saw the student with a gun and ran
FOR 14 long hours over the weekend, Tony Abbott was just one of 1392 anonymous, sooty-faced firefighters battling to keep the relentless NSW bushfires at bay. His favoured white-shirt-blue-tie combo was swapped for yellow overalls as Australia´s 28th prime minister joined his Davidson RFS brigade on a back-burning operation in Bilpin, near the Blue Mountains, for a night shift that began at 6pm Saturday and finished at 8am yesterday. If not for a couple of photos circulating on Twitter, it´s a fair chance that Mr Abbott´s weekend exploits would have gone unnoticed. His office did not issue a statement until
As Americans become more and more perturbed over the Obamacare exchange website glitches that have crippled the rollout of President Obama’s signature program, President Obama took to the podium on Monday and suggested that Americans apply in person or via phone for enrollment in the Obamacare exchanges. “Nobody is madder than me about the fact that the website isn’t working as well as it should, which means it’s going to get fixed,” Obama said. He then recommended a toll-free phone number to call. There was only one problem: the Obamcare toll-free phone number was overloaded and immediately crashed. According to
President Obama´s long-winded speech in defense of his health care reform nearly put one audience member to sleep, with a guest standing directly behind the President almost fainting as he continued to drone on for nearly 30 minutes. A young woman, who appeared to be pregnant, dressed in a bright red frock stood at attention behind the President during his Rose Garden remarks, smiling brightly during much of the address. But Obama´s verbosity got the best of her — and she nearly toppled over, seemingly a result of the bright D.C. sun. She began to appear lightheaded, blinking several times
Forced labor is a reality, and you might be using products made by workers who had no choice in the matter. The first edition of Global Slavery Index from the Walk Free Foundation, an anti-slavery NGO, estimates that there are 30 million slaves in the world—and more than half of them are in prominent emerging markets like India, China, and Russia. Modern slavery, as the index defines it, includes all kinds of forced labor, ranging from hereditary bondage in Mauritania, which has the largest slave population per capita in the world, to forced sexual exploitation, including the arranged marriage of
President Barack Obama averaged a 44.5% job approval rating during his 19th quarter in office, a decline of more than three percentage points from his 18th quarter. That is one of the largest quarter-to-quarter declines of his presidency, behind a nine-point drop in his third quarter and a six-point drop in his 11th quarter.The 19th quarter, which ran from July 20-Oct. 19, is now the third in a row in which Obama´s job approval rating has declined. The current slump followed five consecutive quarters -- the 12th through the 16th -- of higher job approval.
BEIJING - Choking smog all but shut down one of northeastern China´s largest cities on Monday, forcing schools to suspended classes, snarling traffic and closing the airport, in the country´s first major air pollution crisis of the winter. An index measuring PM2.5, or particulate matter with a diameter of 2.5 micrometers (PM2.5), reached a reading of 1,000 in some parts of Harbin, the gritty capital of northeastern Heilongjiang province and home to some 11 million people. A level above 300 is considered hazardous, while the World Health Organisation recommends a daily level of no more than 20. The smog not
Italy’s tax collection agency says it has formally notified Diego Maradona that it will begin procedures to freeze his assets in Italy to pay off his tax debt of 39 million Euros or 53 million dollars. Equitalia confirmed news reports saying its agents had served Maradona with the notification in his Milan hotel room, and that he signed the documentation. The Argentine great was in Italy to promote a video series on his life and watch his old club Napoli play Roma. Maradona’s Italian debts stem from alleged unpaid taxes during the time he played for Napoli from 1984-91, when he
CBS News Political Director John Dickerson told the hosts of CBS This Morning on Monday that President Barack Obama’s administration could be heading toward a “credibility death spiral” if the problems associated with the Affordable Care Act persist. Norah O’Donnell previewed Obama’s speech on Monday when he is expected to address the ACA’s “glitches.” She asked why the president was shifting tone from being dismissive of the problems in the health care reform law to displaying concern about them.