Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius apologized on Wednesday for the "miserably frustrating experience" people are having with the Obamacare enrollment website and said she's the one that the American people should hold accountable for its problems. Tennessee Republican Marsha Blackburn, for one, came to the hearing ready for a fight. Blackburn pressed Sebelius to explain why some people are being terminated from their individual health insurance plans when President Barack Obama promised during the Obamacare rollout that people would be able to keep their current health care plans if they like them.
The U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee plans to hold a hearing on November 5 with Marilyn Tavenner, a top U.S. health official, about the rocky rollout of Obamacare. It marks the first announcement of an oversight hearing in the Democrat-controlled Senate since the glitch-ridden launch of Healthcare.gov on October 1. Tavenner, administrator of the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, testified before a Republican-controlled House of Representatives committee on Tuesday, during which she apologized for the poor rollout of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.
Israel on Wednesday announced new construction in east Jerusalem - an area the Palestinians demand for their future state - just hours after it freed a group of Palestinian prisoners as part of a deal to set peace talks in motion. The building is seen as an attempt by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to make up for the prisoner release, for which he has been sharply criticized at home.
President Barack Obama is citing the Massachusetts health care system's slow start to keep expectations low for early sign-ups for his own overhaul. And he's pointing to the bipartisan effort to get the program launched in Massachusetts to encourage his opponents to stop rooting for his law's failure. The president planned to speak about the embattled law Wednesday from Boston's historic Faneuil Hall, where Massachusetts Republican Gov. Mitt Romney was joined by the late Democratic Sen. Ted Kennedy to sign the state's 2006 health care overhaul bill