ARRA News Service
News Blog for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited "smaller" government, free markets, lower taxes, due process of law, liberty & individual freedom. Content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for or by this "Blog" - no paid ads - no payments for articles. Fair Use Doctrine is posted & used.
Blogger/Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year]
Contact: editor@arranewsservice.com (Pub. Since July, 2006)
    Home Page
   

One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Furloughed Workers Back To Work | Obamacare Website Remains Broken

Today in Washington, D.C. - Oct 17, 2013: Government Shutdown is ended. Government furloughed workers ordered back to work.

The Senate is not in session today and if the House adopts the adjournment resolution (S. Con. Res. 24), the Senate will be in recess until Monday, October 28.

Yesterday, the Senate agreed by unanimous consent to take up H.R. 2775 and to amend the bill with the text of the agreement extending government funding at lower levels required by sequestration to January 15th and suspending the debt limit through February.

The Senate then voted 83-16 to invoke cloture (cut off debate) on the bill. Post-cloture debate time was yielded back by unanimous consent and the Senate then voted 81-18 to pass the bill.

The House is also in recess but will convene on 2 PM on Oct 22, 2013  to keep the President from making recess appointments.   Yesterday the House voted 285-144 to agree to the Senate amendment and the bill was sent to the president. The president signed the bill into law last night.

In an editorial today, Rick Manning, vice president of public policy for Americans for Limited Government, noted that "Tucked into the “deal” to end the government shutdown, raise the debt ceiling and keep Obamacare intact is an additional $2 billion plus of spending for a dam in Republican Leader and lead negotiator Mitch McConnell’s home state. McConnell incredibly claims no knowledge of how this earmark got into the bill and his staff pointed to equally politically beleaguered Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander as the person who put it into the law. . . ." Also a "$174,000 gift in the legislation that was bestowed to the wife of the deceased former New Jersey Senator Frank Lautenberg. The destitute widow was only left with a $100 million plus fortune, and when you are spending other people’s money, Harry Reid and friends couldn’t resist giving her a little going away gift. After all it is other people’s money."

The AP summarized, that the bill allowed "more spending for upgrading a lock in the Ohio River between Illinois and Kentucky; money to help Colorado rebuild roads washed away by last month's catastrophic floods; extra money to help the Veterans Affairs Department whittle down a backlog of disabilities claims; and permission for the Pentagon to keep helping African nations hunt a notorious warlord."

The AP also noted a "lump of coal for lawmakers: For the sixth consecutive year it would deny them the annual cost-of-living pay raise that by law they automatically receive unless they vote to block it. Members of Congress earn $174,000 annually, and some leaders receive more."

As for the previously mentioned additional $2.9 billion plus of spending for a dam, the AP addressed the situation in more detail. This provision has "gained attention because the two states it straddles are represented by two of the Senate's most powerful members: the Republican leader, Mitch McConnell, and No. 2 Democratic leader, Richard Durbin of Illinois. Both men said they had nothing to do with the provision, and others backed that up. Aides to Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-TN, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-CA, the leaders of a Senate Appropriations subcommittee that oversees water projects, said they had requested the provision.

They said President Barack Obama had requested the project in his budget this year and said it has been included in the House and Senate water bills this year too. 'This is not an earmark,' Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. . . ."

The bill also lifted the usual $100 million limit on Federal Highway Administration emergency highway aid to $450 million for the state of Colorado which last month had 200 miles of roads and 50 bridges destroyed by flooding.

The legislation, provided an extra $294 million until Jan 15, 2014 to the Veterans Affairs Department to reduce backlogged claims and an additional $100 million to prevent furloughs of air traffic controllers and safety inspectors, and extra money for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to continue work on two weather satellites. In addition, the bill:
  • Lets the Defense Department continue assisting African forces pursue Joseph Kony, leader of the Lord's Resistance Army, a rebel group accused of atrocities.
  • Provides extra money for contracts with private companies whose ships move American troops and their equipment overseas.
  • Supplies $600 million for Forest Service firefighting and $36 million for Interior Department firefighting.
Politico writes today, “With the shutdown over and a default averted, Washington has another train wreck to sift through: the Obamacare rollout. Republican critics have plenty to investigate, starting with the $400 million website that doesn't work and the federal contractor that built it, while asking a more fundamental question: Will it be fixed in time for people to get health coverage early next year. The Obama administration hasn't answered many questions but Democrats are anxious, worried that it may take weeks, if not months to fix the bugs — while opponents say ‘I told you so.’”

Every day this week has featured a new story about the serious flaws of the Obamacare exchange sites, so there’s plenty of this train wreck to sift through. Yesterday, Politico wrote, “The Obamacare enrollment website remains badly broken despite two weeks of intensive round-the-clock efforts at repairs. HHS isn't making any predictions about how long it will take to fix it — or rebuild it. But advocates, lobbyists and industry officials are talking about it as a months-long repair effort. . . . In the meantime, few people can get through the enrollment process online. According to some analysts like Millward Brown Digital, thousands of consumers have stopped trying, at least for now. At a summit of health care advocacy groups at the Newseum on Tuesday, the audience was asked how many had successfully made it through HealthCare.gov even far enough to browse the selection of health plans. Only two out of about 70 people raised their hands. The administration hasn’t said much about the nature of the technical problems. Officials initially described them as the kind of ‘glitches’ that inevitably occur in a tech launch, and attributed them to the high interest in new health coverage options . . . They aren’t blaming ‘glitches’ and ‘traffic’ anymore. In fact, they haven’t said much at all in the past few days, while a string of leaked emails, memos and reports describe deeper hardware and software malfunctions. Today, again, featured a ‘No comment’ from the administration.”

Examining the history of the administration’s work on the exchange, Reuters reports, “As U.S. officials warned that the technology behind Obamacare might not be ready to launch on October 1, the administration was pouring tens of millions of dollars more than it had planned into the federal website meant to enroll Americans in the biggest new social program since the 1960s. A Reuters review of government documents shows that the contract to build the federal Healthcare.gov online insurance website . . . tripled in potential total value to nearly $292 million as new money was assigned to the work beginning in April this year. The increase coincided with warnings from federal and state officials that the information technology underlying the online marketplaces, or exchanges, where people could buy Obamacare health insurance was in trouble. The contract to build Healthcare.gov, issued to the CGI Federal unit of Montreal-based CGI Group, has come under scrutiny after the site, offering new subsidized health insurance in 36 states, stalled within minutes of its October 1 launch, leaving millions of Americans unable to create accounts or shop for plans."

"In its third week of operations, the website continues to experience problems, which government officials say they are working day and night to repair. Even allies of the Obama administration have been highly critical, with former White House press secretary Robert Gibbs calling it ‘excruciatingly embarrassing’ and calling for ‘some people’ to be fired. How and why the system failed, and how long it will take to fix, remains unclear. But evidence of a last-minute surge in spending suggests the needs of the project were growing well beyond the initial expectations of the contractor and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. ‘Why this went from a ceiling of $93.7 million to $292 million is hard to fathom,’ said Scott Amey, general counsel at the Project on Government Oversight, a Washington, D.C. . . . ‘Something changed. It suggests they ran into problems and knew last spring that they couldn't do it for $93.7 million. They just blew through the original ceiling. Where was the contract oversight?’ HHS did not respond to Reuters' requests for information about CGI's contract.”

And the state exchanges, which Obamacare proponents have been touting, are having serious problems, too. According to The New York Times, “As he was trying to sign up for health insurance through Kentucky’s new online exchange this month, Kenny Wheeler hit a wall. Mr. Wheeler, an independent sales representative with a neuromuscular disorder, had succeeded where many in other states had failed, getting through a thicket of log-in pages. But when he tried to find out whether two health plans he liked would pay for his medications or let him keep his current doctors, he could not. He called one doctor on the spot, but the receptionist could not tell him whether the practice was in the new plan networks. Nor could Mr. Wheeler, 61, get quick answers from the insurers themselves. Exasperated, he put off completing his application. Since the new health insurance exchanges opened for business on Oct. 1, millions of people who have visited the online sites have been unable to enroll because of technical problems and software glitches."

"But many people who are getting through the log-in process are encountering a different set of problems when they try to determine whether policies sold through the exchanges will provide the doctors, hospitals or drugs they need. Most of the 15 exchanges run by states and the District of Columbia do not have provider directories or search tools on their Web sites — at least not yet — so customers cannot easily check which doctors and hospitals are included in a particular plan’s network. . . . Ellen Boyd, 62, of Torrington, Conn., said she had tried to check whether her doctors were in a plan offered on her state’s exchange by clicking a link that took her to the insurer’s Web site. But it appeared that she had to go ahead and buy a plan before being able to check which providers were in its network, she said. ‘I thought I would be able to go to the Web site and pop in a name and get a yes or no answer,’ said Ms. Boyd, who has osteoporosis and ulcerative colitis and wants to stick with her current doctors. ‘It makes your hair hurt, I’ll tell you.’”

The Los Angeles Times adds, “Checking up on a doctor is becoming a major snag for Obamacare shoppers in California. Three weeks into open enrollment, the state's insurance exchange, Covered California, has pulled its online directory of medical providers after acknowledging there are serious problems with the information.
The California Medical Assn. says it found mistakes such as obstetricians labeled as ophthalmologists and the wrong doctors described as fluent in Russian and Farsi. . . . And consumers say calling other insurers and doctor's offices around the state often yields confusing or conflicting answers, leaving them largely in the dark. ‘Nobody can give me a straight answer,’ said Larry Greenfield, a 47-year-old musician in Fountain Valley. He said he has checked online and called insurers to no avail as he tries to choose between different exchange policies. ‘I don't want to be forced to buy something if I don't know what I'm getting.’”

The Wall Street Journal editors summed up the situation well: “The White House set low expectations for the Affordable Care Act's October 1 debut, so anything remotely competent should have seemed like a success. But three weeks on, the catastrophe that is Healthcare.gov and the 36 insurance exchanges run by the federal government is an insult to the ‘glitches’ President Obama said were inevitable. . . . Before the rollout, Mr. Obama and Mrs. Sebelius likened the exchanges to a new Apple product and asked for forbearance as problems were fixed. But Apple doesn't ship products that don't work and then force everyone to buy them, and a private business executive who supervised a fiasco like this would already have been fired.”

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell said yesterday about Obamacare, “This law is ravaging our economy, killing jobs, driving up premiums, and driving people off the health care plans they have and like, in droves. Its disastrous rollout is sign of even worse things to come. And the Democrat refusal to delay it reflects a stubborn ideological obsession that will do untold damage to our country. And Republicans remain determined to repeal this terrible law.”


Tags: Washington, D.C., shutdown over, Obamacare Website Broken< Congress in recess To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 1:05 PM - Post Link

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

<< Home


View U.S. National Debt

Don't miss anything!
Subscribe to the
ARRA News Service
It's FREE & No Ads!

You will receive a verification email
& must validate you subscribed!

You Then Receive One Email Each AM
With Prior Days Articles / Toons / More


Also, Join us at:
Facebook.com/ARRANewsService


Recent Posts:
Personal Tweets by the editor:
Dr. Bill - OzarkGuru - @arra
#Christian Conservative; Retired USAF & Grad Professor. Constitution NRA ProLife schoolchoice fairtax - Editor ARRA NEWS SERVICE. THANKS FOR FOLLOWING!

Action Links!
State Upper & Lower House Members
State Attorney Generals
State Governors
The White House
US House of Representatives
US Senators
GrassFire
NumbersUSA
Ballotpedia

Facebook Accts - Dr. Bill Smith
Pages:
ARRA News Service
Arkansans Against Big Government
Alley-White Am. Legion #52
Catholics & Protestants United Against Discrimination
End Taxpayer Funding of NPR
Overturn Roe V. Wade
Prolife Soldiers
Project Wildfire 4 Life
Republican Liberty Caucus of Arkansas
The Gold Standard
US Atty Gen Loretta Lynch, aka Eric Holder, Must Go
Veterans for Sarah Palin
Why Vote for Hillary (Satire)
FB Groups:
Arkansas For Sarah Palin
Arkansas Conservative Caucus
Arkansas County Tea Party
Arkansans' Discussion Group on National Issues
Blogs for Borders
Conservative Solutions
Conservative Voices
Defend Marriage -- Arkansas
FairTax
FairTax Nation
Arkansas for FairTax
Friends of the TEA Party in Arkansas
Freedom Roundtable
Pro-Life Rocks - Arkansas
Republican Network
Republican Liberty Caucus of AR
Reject the U.N.

Patriots
Exchange
Links

Request Via
Article Comment

Links to ARRA News
A Patriotic Nurse
Agora Associates
a12iggymom's Blog
America, You Asked For It!
Americans for a Free Republic
America's Best Choice
ARRA News Twitter
As The Crackerhead Crumbles
Blogs For Borders
Blogs for Palin
Blow the Trumpet Ministry
Boot Berryism
Cap'n Bob & the Damsel
Chicago Ray Report
Chuck Baldwin - links
Common Cents
Conservative Voices
Defeat Obama's Agenda
Diana's Corner
Greater Fitchburg For Life
Lasting Liberty Blog
Liberal Isn't Amy
Maggie's Notebook
Marathon Pundit
Patriot's Corner
Right on Issues that Matter
Right Reason
Rocking on the Right Side
Saber Point
Saline Watchdog
Secure Arkansas
Sultan Knish
The Blue Eye View
The Born Again Americans
TEA Party Cartoons
The Foxhole | Unapologetic Patriot
The Liberty Republican
The Lid
The Maritime Sentry
The O Word
The Path to Tyranny Blog
The Real Polichick
The War on Guns
TOTUS
Twitter @ARRA
Underground Notes
Warning Signs
Women's Prayer & Action
WyBlog

Editor's Managed Twitter Accounts
Twitter Dr. Bill Smith @arra
Twitter Arkansas @GOPNetwork
Twitter @BootBerryism
Twitter @SovereignAllies
Twitter @FairTaxNation

Editor's Recommended Orgs
Accuracy in Media (AIM)
American Action Forum (AAF)
American Committment
American Culture & Faith Institute
American Enterprise Institute
American Family Business Institute
Americans for Limited Government
Americans for Prosperity
Americans for Tax Reform
American Security Council Fdn
AR Faith & Ethics Council
Arkansas Policy Foundation
Ayn Rand Institute
Bill of Rights Institute
Campaign for Working Families
CATO Institute
Center for Individual Freedom
Center for Immigration Studies
Center for Just Society
Center for Freedom & Prosperity
Citizens Against Gov't Waste
Citizens in Charge Foundstion
Coalition for the Future American Worker
Competitive Enterprise Institute
Concerned Veterans for America
Concerned Women for America
Declaration of Am. Renewal
Eagle Forum
FairTax
Family Research Council
Family Security Matters
Franklin Center for Gov't & Public Integrity
Freedom Works
Gingrich Productions
Global Incident Map
Great Americans
Gold Standard 2012 Project
Gun Owners of America (GOA)
Heritage Action for America
David Horowitz Freedom Center
Institute For Justice
Institute for Truth in Accounting
Intercollegiate Studies Institute
Judicial Watch
Less Government
Media Reseach Center
National Center for Policy Analysis
National Right To Work Foundation
National Rifle Association (NRA)
National Rifle Association (NRA-ILA)
News Busters
O'Bluejacket's Patriotic Flicks
OathKeepers
Open Secrets
Presidential Prayer Team
Religious Freedom Coalition
Renew America
Ron Paul Institute
State Policy Network
Tax Foundation
Tax Policy Center
The Club for Growth
The Federalist
The Gold Standard Now
The Heritage Foundation
The Leadership Institute
Truth in Accounting
Union Facts



Blogs For Borders

Reject the United Nations

Presidential Prayer Team

Thousands of Deadly Islamic Terror Attacks Since 9/11


FairTax Nation on FaceBook
Friends of Israel - Stand with Israel
Blog Feeds
Syndicated - Get the ARRA News Service feed Syndicated!
ARRA Blog Feed

Add to Google Reader or Homepage

Add to The Free Dictionary

Powered by Blogger


  • To Exchange Links - Email: editor@arranewsservice.com!
  • Comments by contributing authors or other sources do not necessarily reflect the position the editor, other contributing authors, sources, readers, or commenters. No contributors, or editors are paid for articles, images, cartoons, etc. While having reported on and promoting beliefs associated with the former Arkansas Republican Assemblies (ARRA), this blog/site is controlled and supported by the editor. This site/blog does not advertise for money or services nor does it solicit funding for its support.
  • Fair Use: This site/blog may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Such material is made available to advance understanding of political, human rights, economic, democracy, and social justice issues, etc. This constitutes a 'fair use' of such copyrighted material as provided for in section Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107 of the US Copyright Law. Per said section, the material on this site/blog is distributed without profit to readers to view for the expressed purpose of viewing the included information for research, educational, or satirical purposes. Any person/entity seeking to use copyrighted material shared on this site/blog for purposes that go beyond "fair use," must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
  • © 2006 - 2018 ARRA News Service
Creative Commons License
Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.