Numbers tell a confused story on Obamacare

Numbers tell a confused story on Obamacare

The government churns out tons of numbers, but here’s one you won’t see: 0.0002. That’s the percentage of estimated online visitors to healthcare.gov who actually signed up for coverage the first day. Altogether, that’s six people out of just over 3 million. Not all the figures associated with the rollout of President Barack Obama’s health […]

Unemployment benefits end Saturday for 1.3 million

Unemployment benefits end Saturday for 1.3 million

More than 1 million Americans are bracing for a harrowing, post-Christmas jolt as extended federal unemployment benefits come to a sudden halt this weekend, with potentially significant implications for the recovering U.S. economy. A tense political battle likely looms when Congress reconvenes in the new, midterm election year. Nudging Congress along, a vacationing President Barack […]

Judge rules NSA spying on Americans is legal

Judge rules NSA spying on Americans is legal

The heated debate over the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of millions of Americans’ telephone records fell squarely into the courts Friday, when a federal judge in Manhattan upheld the legality of the program and cited its need in the fight against terrorism just days after another federal judge concluded it was likely not constitutional. […]

Punitive, Puritan politics

Punitive, Puritan politics

‘Tis the season of giving, charity and good will — unless you happen to be a Republican, and then ‘tis the season of pusillanimity, churlishness and bad will. Congressional Republicans seem hell-bent on denying the most disadvantaged among us healthcare, unemployment benefits and, perhaps worst of all, food stamps, from which the House of Representatives […]

Can water projects unify a divided Congress?

Can water projects unify a divided Congress?

Big multimillion-dollar water projects, once a favorite target of good-government reformers who made them a poster child of political pork, are back in vogue as a rare force of concord in a dysfunctional Congress. Republicans and Democrats who found little common ground in 2013 are rallying around a bill they hope to pass early next […]

Obama signs budget deal, new defense bill

Obama signs budget deal, new defense bill

Rounding out a tough and frustrating year, President Barack Obama signed a bipartisan budget deal Thursday easing spending cuts and a defense bill cracking down on sexual assault in the military, as the president and Congress began pivoting to the midterm election year ahead. Obama put his signature on both hard-fought bills while vacationing in […]

Obamacare’s line: ‘Don’t worry, bet happy’

Obamacare’s line: ‘Don’t worry, bet happy’

The U.S. government said it was still processing thousands of sign-ups for health insurance under President Barack Obama’s signature healthcare law on Tuesday as Americans made a final rush to obtain medical coverage in time for New Year’s Day. Citing nearly 2 million visits to the HealthCare.gov website and over 250,000 inquiries at call centers […]

Health care a dividing issue in 2014 races

Health care a dividing issue in 2014 races

Republicans see the 2014 midterm elections as a chance to capitalize on voter frustration with the problem-plagued health care overhaul, but the GOP first must settle a slate of Senate primaries where conservatives are arguing over the best way to oppose President Barack Obama’s signature law. In intraparty skirmishes from Georgia to Nebraska, the GOP’s […]

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