Tag: Government finance

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National

Reid: Soft-spoken, combative Obama partner vs GOP

President Barack Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nev., right, and other Democrat Senators meet in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) by Charles Babington and Nedra PicklerAssociated Press Writers WASHINGTON (AP) — Harry Reid, the soft-spoken but pugilistic Senate majority leader, didn’t wait for White House officials to declare their view of high-stakes talks over the government shutdown and debt. Standing just outside the West Wing, the 73-year-old Nevadan gave reporters his assessment of a key House Republican offer last week: “Not going to happen.”

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National

Obama to public: Don’t give up on health sign-ups

In this photo taken Friday, Oct. 4, 2013, President Barack Obama speaks during an exclusive interview with The Associated Press in the White House library in Washington. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) by Julie PaceAP White House Correspondent WASHINGTON (AP) — Defending the shaky rollout of his health care law, President Barack Obama said frustrated Americans “definitely shouldn’t give up” on the problem-plagued program now at the heart of his dispute with Republicans over reopening the federal government.

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Opinion

10% of Americans like Congress: Are they nuts?

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, center, accompanied by Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., left, and Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, right, express their frustration after the Senate passed a bill to fund the government, but stripped it of the defund “Obamacare” language as crafted by House Republicans, Friday, Sept. 27, 2013, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) (CNN) — Our Congress sucks. This is truly one of the few things we agree on. In fact, a new CNN poll released earlier this week found that Congress has only a 10% approval rating. When you think that 10% of Americans believe Congress is doing a good job, you have to ask yourself one question: Who are these people?! (Imagine this asked with true Jerry Seinfeld-esque exasperation.)

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National

Government powers down; blame trading in capital

A National Park Service employee posts a sign reading “Because of the Federal Government SHUTDOWN All National Parks are Closed” on a barricade closing access to the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) by David Espo and Donna CassataAssociated Press Writers WASHINGTON (AP) — First slowed, then stalled by political gridlock, the vast machinery of government clanged into partial shutdown mode on Tuesday and President Barack Obama warned the longer it goes “the more families will be hurt.” Republicans said it was his fault, not theirs. Ominously, there were suggestions from leaders in both parties that the shutdown, heading for its second day, could last for weeks and grow to encompass a possible default by the Treasury if Congress fails to raise the nation’s debt ceiling. “This is now all together,” said Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill..

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National

Obama hails ‘historic’ launch of health exchanges

President Barack Obama, stands with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and people who support the Affordable Care Act, his signature health care law, as he speaks in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 1, 2013. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) by Josh LedermanAssociated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — Hailing it as an “historic day,” President Barack Obama pressed forward his flagship health care program Tuesday, inaugurating new insurance exchanges to expand access for those without coverage despite the shutdown taking hold across much of the government.

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National

Obama’s no-negotiation stance setting new tone

President Barack Obama speaks about the Affordable Care Act, Thursday, Sept. 26, 2013, at Prince George’s Community College in Largo, Md. The president is promoting the benefits of his health care law before new insurance exchanges open for business next week. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais) by Jim KuhnhennAssociated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — This time, President Barack Obama says, he’s not budging. This is the confrontational Obama, the “Make my day” president, betting Republicans blink to avoid a government shutdown or a first-ever default of the nation’s debts. It’s a proposition not without risk and one with a history of last-minute accommodations on both sides. Brinkmanship between Obama and congressional Republicans has often stopped at the precipice’s edge.

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Health

Premiums unveiled for health overhaul plans

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius speaks during an event discussing the federal health care overhaul in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File) by Ricardo Alonso-ZalvidarAssociated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — With new health insurance markets launching next week, the Obama administration is unveiling premiums and plan choices for 36 states where the federal government is taking the lead to cover uninsured residents. Before tax credits that work like an upfront discount for most consumers, sticker-price premiums for a mid-range benchmark plan will average $328 a month nationally for an individual, comparable to payments for a new car.

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Health

Obamacare trade-off: low premium, high deductible

This April 30, 2013 file photo shows the short form for the new federal Affordable Care Act application in Washington. Getting covered through President Barack Obama’s health care law might feel like a combination of doing your taxes and making a big purchase that requires some research. You’ll need accurate income information for your household, plus some understanding of how health insurance works, so you can get the financial assistance you qualify for and pick a health plan that’s right for your needs. (AP Photo/J. David Ake) by Ricardo Alonso-ZaldivarAssociated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — You might be pleased with the low monthly premium for one of the new health insurance plans under President Barack Obama’s overhaul, but the added expense of copayments and deductibles could burn a hole in your wallet.