Reid Is Blocking Bipartisan Health Care Bill (As Usual)

From the New York Times:

Bipartisan Deal on Health Care Issues Hits a Snag Among Senate Democrats

By JENNIFER STEINHAUER and ROBERT PEAR | March 24, 2015

WASHINGTON — The deal is as politically remarkable as it is substantive: a long-term plan to finance health care for older Americans, pay doctors who accept Medicare and extend popular health care programs for children and the poor. It was cobbled together by none other than House Speaker John A. Boehner and Representative Nancy Pelosi, the leader of House Democrats, who rarely agree on anything, with the apparent blessing of a majority of their respective members.

If Ms. Pelosi is for it, we are sure this means the Republicans have had to cave — big time. And even so, that still isn’t good enough for Harry Reid:

Then along came a surprising impediment: Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the minority leader, along with other Senate Democrats, objected to abortion restrictions in the bill and limits to an extension of a health insurance program for children.

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The AP Smirks At Cruz Being Forced Into Obama-Care

From a chortling Associated Press:

Cruz eyes insurance via Obamacare, a law he vows to scrap

By PHILIP ELLIOTT | March 24, 2015

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sen. Ted Cruz could soon be buying his family’s health care coverage through the Affordable Care Act, a law the Republican presidential candidate has vowed to repeal should he win the White House.

Cruz formally launched his presidential campaign on Monday, and his wife, Heidi Cruz, began an unpaid leave of absence from her job as a managing director in the Houston office of Goldman Sachs. That meant the family would soon lose access to health insurance through Mrs. Cruz’s job, triggering a need for the Cruz family to find a new policy…

We suspect Sen. Cruz isn’t enrolling in Obamacare because he wants to.

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5th Circuit To Hear WH Appeal On Amnesty Injunction

Meanwhile, from The Hill:

Court to hear appeal on Obama’s immigration actions

By Elliot Smilowitz | March 24, 2015

A federal appeals court said Tuesday it will hear an expedited appeal of an earlier ruling against President Obama’s executive actions on immigration. The Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will listen to oral argument April 17 in the administration’s attempt to overturn a ruling last month by U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen…

The White House’s appeal seeks to end the temporary hold, arguing it prevents the Department of Homeland Security from protecting the borders…

Oh, our sides. The White House will say anything. And usually it’s the polar opposite of reality.

Meanwhile, via Breitbart:

NYT: ‘Jealous,’ ‘Hoarding’ Americans Should Let in 11 Million Immigrants—Annually

By Katie McHugh | March 24, 2015

The United States should absorb as many as 11 million immigrants each year into its economy, NPR “Planet Money” founder Adam Davidson writes in The New York Times Magazine.

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Obama Has Released 195,900 Criminal Illegal Aliens

From Breitbart:

165,900 Criminal Aliens [Let] into US Population Through April 2014

By Bob Price | March 24, 2015

Nearly 166,000 convicted criminal illegal aliens were released by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as of April, 2014. This is the analysis of 76 pages of DHS documents obtained by Judicial Watch via Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests. The criminal illegal aliens include rapists, murderers and kidnappers… 

A report from Judicial Watch on Monday revealed the startling details of criminal illegal aliens who have been set free to roam around the United States after being convicted of crimes. Many of the criminals released are violent offenders who have committed homicides, sexual assaults, kidnappings and aggravated assaults. The information comes from a list of 76 documents that Judicial Watch obtained from a lawsuit they filed against the DHS in July, 2014…

Where is the news media?

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DHS ‘Helped’ Hillary’s Brother, Reid, Terry McAuliffe

From ABC News:

Top Homeland Official Alejandro Mayorkas Accused of Political Favoritism

By MATTHEW MOSK and BRIAN ROSS | Mar 24, 2015

Deputy Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas tainted the image and integrity of the immigration program he oversaw by fostering “an appearance of favoritism and special access” in how the agency treated projects that would bring visas and Green Cards to wealthy foreign investors, a new report from the agency’s Inspector General says.

Note that, despite the involvement of Brian Ross in this article, this information is not from a MSM investigative report. This is from the DHS IG. There is no investigative journalism where Democrats are concerned.

“The juxtaposition of Mr. Mayorkas’ communication with external stakeholders on specific matters outside the normal procedures, coupled with favorable action that deviated from the regulatory scheme designed to ensure fairness and evenhandedness in adjudicating benefits, created an appearance of favoritism and special access,” the Inspector General’s report concluded.

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State Dept Had No Watchdog During Hillary’s Tenure

From the Wall Street Journal:

State Department Lacked Top Watchdog During Hillary Clinton Tenure

By Byron Tau and Peter Nicholas | March 24, 2015

The State Department had no permanent inspector general—the lead watchdog charged with uncovering misconduct and waste—during Hillary Clinton’s entire tenure as secretary, leaving in place an acting inspector who had close ties to State Department leadership.

What an amazing coincidence.

President Barack Obama didn’t put forward a nominee to lead the inspector general’s office while Mrs. Clinton led the State Department, making it the only agency with a presidentially appointed inspector general that had neither a confirmed nor nominated head watchdog during that full time period. Five months after Mrs. Clinton left office, Mr. Obama nominated a permanent inspector general, who was confirmed by the Senate three months later…

The lack of a confirmed inspector general raises questions about oversight of the department under Mr.

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Politico Wonders: Could Iran Attack US Troops In Iraq?

From the Politico:

Could Iran attack U.S. troops in Iraq?

By Michael Crowley | March 25, 2015

As negotiations on a possible nuclear deal approach a March 31 deadline, U.S. officials are increasingly alarmed about Iran’s expanding military presence in Iraq — and the threat it may pose to American soldiers in the country. Two scenarios are of particular concern, officials say.

One is that a collapse of the nuclear talks could escalate tensions between Iran and the U.S., emboldening Iranian hard-liners and potentially leading to attacks on Americans in Iraq.

The other is that increased U.S. efforts to oust Syrian president Bashar Assad, a close ally of Tehran, could provoke retaliation from Iran. White House officials who oppose greater involvement in Syria’s civil war often cite concern for the safety of Americans in Iraq as a reason for caution, sources said.

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IAEA: Iran Is Refusing Access To Its Nuke Information

From the Washington Post:

Iran isn’t providing needed access or information, nuclear watchdog says

By Steven Mufson | March 24, 2015

The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency said that Iran has failed to provide the information or access needed to allay the agency’s concerns about the weapons potential of the country’s nuclear program.

With the deadline nearing for international talks on constraining Iran’s nuclear program, Yukiya Amano, director general of the IAEA, said in an interview that Iran has replied to just one of a dozen queries about “possible military dimensions” of past nuclear activities. Amano said that Iran has provided only “very limited” information about two other issues, while the rest have not been addressed at all…

So what? It’s not like Obama’s secret deal with them is going to depend upon the Iranian regime supplying the information on their nuclear program.

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NYT: Iran ‘Nuclear Deal’ Might Not Be Written Down

From the New York Times, of all places:

In Nuclear Talks, Iran Seeks to Avoid Specifics

By DAVID E. SANGER and MICHAEL R. GORDON | March 24, 2015

PARIS — If an agreement to limit Iran’s nuclear capability is reached by deadline in the next seven days, one thing may be missing: an actual written accord, signed by the Iranians.

Unreal. What kind of a deal is that? Can’t the Obama administration do anything right? Do they really think they can do an ‘gentlemen’s agreement’ with these duplicitous lunatics?

Over the past few weeks, Iran has increasingly resisted any kind of formal “framework” agreement at this stage in the negotiations, preferring a more general statement of “understanding” followed by a final accord in June, according to Western diplomats involved in the talks.

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WP: Suing Rolling Stone Would Be A Colossal Mistake

From the Washington Post:

Suing Rolling Stone might be a ‘colossal mistake’ for the U-Va. frat

By Terrence McCoy | March 24, 2015

…. A lawsuit appears to be under consideration. “Phi Kappa Psi is now exploring its legal options to address the extensive damage caused by Rolling Stone — damage both to the chapter and its members and to the very cause upon which the magazine was focused,” the chapter said in a statement, calling the article “defamatory.” 

Indeed, the chapter, if not the wider campus, was wrongly made the focus of a heated national debate on the issue of campus rape and whether schools are doing enough to combat it. Some on the University of Virginia faculty are already calling for a lawsuit…

But according to… legal experts, successfully litigating a libel case against Rolling Stone would be substantially more complicated than that and could expose the fraternity to further unwanted publicity.

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No Evidence Supports Rolling Stone Gang-Rape Story

From the Washington Examiner:

Police: No evidence to support Rolling Stone gang-rape story

By Ashe Schow | March 23, 2015

Charlottesville Police Chief Timothy Longo said Monday that his department was "not able to conclude to any substantive degree" that the University of Virginia gang-rape described in a Nov. 19, 2014 Rolling Stone article actually happened. Longo disputed several points made in the article, including the accuser Jackie’s claim that she received no help after reporting the incident to campus officials. The police chief said that police spoke with Jackie in May 2014, after she claimed to school officials she suffered a second attack.

At that time, Jackie claimed a group of four men called her name and threw a bottle at her head when she turned around.

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Obama Exec Action Will Bring In More Guest Workers

From the Daily Caller:

Obama Announces Unilateral Action To Bring In More Guest Workers

By Rachel Stoltzfoos | March 23, 2015

President Barack Obama plans to take unilateral action to “make it easier” for global companies to send guest workers to the United States, he announced Monday. The action could benefit “hundreds of thousands” of new guest workers, who would be competing with American workers for jobs.

And un-benefit how many American citizens? But who cares? This is all about ‘fundamentally transforming America.’ So the more foreigners, the better.

“My administration is going to reform the L-1B visa category, which allows corporations to temporarily move workers from a foreign office to a U.S. office in a faster, simpler way,” he said in a speech Monday to a global investors summit at the Gaylord National Convention Center in Maryland…

The stated goal of the program is to incentivize companies to invest in the U.S., but businesses have started using the program to replace American workers with dramatically cheaper foreign workers.

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AP: Anonymous Sources Say GOP Will Cut Medicaid

From the Associated Press:

AP Exclusive: GOP hits Medicaid to offset doc fee hikes

By DAVID ESPO | March 24, 2015

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republicans quietly deepened recommended budget savings from the government’s chief health care program for the poor by about $140 billion in recent weeks to offset part of the cost of higher payments to doctors who treat Medicare patients, according to officials familiar with the tradeoff.

The maneuver comes as Republicans in both houses struggle with competing priorities, in this case a desire to stabilize what is widely viewed as a dysfunctional system of provider payments under Medicare, while pursuing a 10-year goal of balancing the budget.

Neither budget documents nor publicly available material related to the doctor fee legislation contain any reference to the decision to reap greater savings from Medicaid, a federal-state program that provides health care for the low-income.

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Dems Up For Re-Election Beg For Obama-Care Delay

From the Daily Caller:

EXCLUSIVE: Democratic Senators Beg For Another Obamacare Delay

By Patrick Howley | March 23, 2015

A group of Democratic senators is urging the Obama administration to delay a key portion of Obamacare because the results could be “harmful and disruptive.”

In a letter exclusively obtained by The Daily Caller, Senate Democrats pleaded with Health and Human Services secretary Sylvia Matthews Burwell to delay an Obamacare rule change that puts companies with 51 to 100 employees in the costlier “small group” market instead of the “large group” market. The rule change, which will result in higher premiums for many companies, goes into effect in 2016.

Which is an election year. Which guarantees that this will be pushed back until at least the end of November 2016.

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Obama-Care Nets Less Than 1/2 Uninsured Promised

From an unquestioning Associated Press:

CDC: 11M fewer uninsured since passage of Obama’s law

By Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar | March 23, 2015

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of uninsured U.S. residents fell by more than 11 million since President Barack Obama signed the health care overhaul five years ago, according to a pair of reports Tuesday from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

How would the CDC know? There is no question about previous insurance on any Obama-Care application forms. (And that is no accident. They didn’t want to know.)

After all, even HHS had to turn to Gallup last week for their estimate of how many uninsured people had gotten insurance. (And naturally, HHS claimed that there were 16.4 million, even though Gallup’s own estimate was only 9.7 million.)

Although that still would leave about 37 million people uninsured, it’s the lowest level measured in more than 15 years.

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