Blog Posts by Chris Moody, Yahoo News

  • Democrats plan to use Chris Christie's comments against House Republicans

    Democrats are preparing a new broadside against vulnerable House Republicans by highlighting critical remarks made about Washington Republicans by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, a possible GOP presidential contender.

    On a number of issues, Christie has been critical of House Republicans this year, particularly over their handling of the October government shutdown, the delayed federal aid to victims of Superstorm Sandy, and the general state of congressional gridlock in the nation's capital.

    The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the official party group responsible for electing Democrats to the House, is planning to launch a messaging campaign that uses the governor’s remarks against sitting House Republicans.

    While not a paid ad buy (yet), the early messaging blast serves as a sneak peek into how Democrats intend to highlight discord within the Republican Party and badger potential GOP presidential candidates at the same time. The DCCC plans to blast out a series of press

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  • No apologies from House Democrats on Obamacare confusion

    House Democratic leaders are refusing to apologize for the confusion caused when millions of Americans received health insurance cancellation notices as a result of the Affordable Care Act, even after President Barack Obama's contrite press conference on the matter and a clear statement of apology last week. 

    Shortly after Obama announced Thursday that he would unilaterally extend by one year the period in which insurers could offer insurance plans that do not meet new quality standards, Democrats moved to defend the “keep your plan” line.

    Speaking to reporters on Capitol Hill,the top four House Democrats — Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Assistant Leader James Clyburn, Whip Steny Hoyer and House Democratic Caucus Chairman Xavier Becerra — were asked if they would apologize to any constituents who felt misled by Democrats. Each declined.

    “I don’t think there’s anything for us to apologize for,” Clyburn said after explaining that once enough Americans switch to exchange-based insurance

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  • Democrats scramble to fix Obama's troubled health care law

    Democrats aren’t running through the halls of Congress with their hair on fire yet, but anxiety over the possible blowback from the federal health care law is growing by the day.

    Between the disastrous rollout of HealthCare.gov and the fact that millions of Americans are poised to lose their current health insurance coverage at the end of the year despite a promise from President Barack Obama that they would be able to keep their plans “no matter what,” congressional Democrats are scrambling to cover their hides before next year’s midterm elections.

    A handful of Senate Democrats have leapt to support a proposal from Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu, who's facing a tough re-election campaign in 2014, that would allow Americans with already existing insurance plans to keep them even if they don’t meet the quality guidelines established by the Affordable Care Act.

    House Democrats on Wednesday held a closed-door meeting with White House officials, where some members vented frustration with the

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  • Provocative new pro-Obamacare ads urge single women to enroll in exchanges

     

    (Colorado Consumer Health Initiative and Progress Now)

     

    From the folks who brought you the "brosurance" campaign that promotes the affordable care act comes a new line of ads aimed at reminding young women the new law will subsidize their birth control.

    The online ads were created by two nonprofit groups, the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative and Progress Now, to encourage young people to enroll in the exchanges.

     

    (Colorado Consumer Health Initiative and Progress Now)


    The new round of ads don't leave out the boys altogether.

    Why doesn't the guy have any pants on? Who cares! He has insurance.

     

     

    (Colorado Consumer Health Initiative and Progress Now)

     



    The group first started the ad campaign last month, and the spots were mistakenly attributed to the Department of Health and Human Services and public state officials who run the exchange in Colorado.

    A member Congress, Colorado Republican Rep. Cory Gardner, asked HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius about one of the early ads that showed college students doing a keg stand.



    Since the Oct. 1 launch, only about 50,000 people have enrolled through HealthCare.gov, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal,

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  • Anti-Obamacare group entices students with models and a boozy party

     

    (Generation Opportunity)

     

    In September, a conservative group called Generation Opportunity launched an anti-Obamacare ad campaign urging young people not to sign up for the health insurance exchanges established by the Affordable Care Act.

     

    (Generation Opportunity)

     

    The ads featured a clown-like character called Creepy Uncle Sam who performs horrifying pelvic and prostate exams on college students who enrolled in the exchanges. (His services did not appear appreciated.)

     

     

    You see, in order for the health care law to function, lots of healthy, young people must sign up for the exchanges to subsidize older, sicker insurance seekers. So conservative groups are spending a lot of money to convince them not to sign up.

     

    (Generation Opportunity)

     

     On Saturday, Generation Opportunity, a group in part funded by billionaire activists Charles and David Koch, threw a tailgate party with College Republicans outside the University of Miami football game to advocate against signing up for the insurance plans.

     

    (Generation Opportunity)

     

    They set up games of cornhole and beer pong. (Generation

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  • Chris Christie paid $46K for advice from former Romney advisers

    Chris Christie criticized strategists for Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign on Sunday, saying no one should “give a darn” about their political advice, but the New Jersey Republican governor isn’t nearly as dismissive of their input as he lets on.

    During his re-election campaign this year, Christie hired a political consultancy firm run by Romney’s former top strategists and paid more than $46,000 for their services.

    According to his campaign financial reports, Christie paid $46,007.29 (plus $251 for “transportation/parking”) to the Stevens & Schriefer Group, which is run by Romney’s former senior strategists Stuart Stevens and Russell Schriefer. While Stevens did not work on Christie’s campaign, Schriefer and Ashley O'Connor, another partner in the firm who worked with Romney, were paid to advise Christie on advertising.

    “Political advice from people who ran the Romney campaign is probably something nobody should really give a darn about,” Christie said on Sunday during an

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  • Fed up moderate Republicans to launch strike on Club for Growth

    A moderate Republican group that is fed up with the recent onslaught of uncompromising GOP lawmakers and candidates is preparing a multimillion dollar campaign against hardline conservative forces during the 2014 midterm elections.

    The Main Street Partnership, a center-right activist group led by Steve LaTourette, an Ohio Republican who left Congress earlier this year to join a lobbying firm, aims to spend as much as $8 million to defend sitting Republican lawmakers facing threats from conservative primary challengers.

    Through a combination of direct mail, online ads and support for grassroots organizing, the Partnership plans to defend several moderate Republican incumbents next year. The group also plans to launch a direct strike on the Club for Growth, a free-market advocacy network that supports conservative challengers to incumbent GOP lawmakers.

    “To this moment in time we’ve never really fought back, and it’s time to take our party back from these guys,” LaTourette, who left

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  • A European threat to Kentucky tobacco could be a boon to McConnell in 2014

    FILE - In this Oct. 15, 2013 file photo, Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. walks on Capitol Hill in Washington. In the midst of a double-barreled re-election fight, Mitch McConnell is earning praise back home _ and from some of the most unlikely of corners _ for brokering of the deal that ended the partial government shutdown and averted a potential default on U.S. debt. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci, File)

    Kentucky Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell is facing a double-barreled challenge from Democrats and tea-party backed Republicans as he seeks re-election in 2014. And while the outcome of that race could be a referendum on his performance as the Senate's top Republican, this showdown may not actually be so Washington-centric.

    Back home in Kentucky, tobacco growers are facing a possible threat from a new European Union rule that could cost the local industry millions within the next decade. McConnell is busy working behind the scenes to protect the state’s cash crop — and reminding growers what he can do for them if he remains in Senate leadership.

    Kentucky tobacco farmers are reeling after the EU voted in October to phase in a ban on flavored tobacco products. Burley, one form of tobacco grown mostly in Kentucky, requires added ingredients during the manufacturing process, and as a result could be included in the ban. Kentucky farmers produce 148 million pounds of burley tobacco on average Read More »from A European threat to Kentucky tobacco could be a boon to McConnell in 2014
  • All these congressmen made terrible Wizard of Oz jokes about Sebelius

    Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testified before Congress Wednesday about the shaky rollout of the Obamacare online exchange website.

    Sebelius was once the governor of Kansas, so pretty much everyone made "Wizard of Oz" jokes at her expense while she sat there answering questions about President Barack Obama's signature legislation that will affect millions of people.

    (Gordon Donovan/Yahoo)

    It all started when Texas Republican Rep. Joe Barton took the microphone and said:

    "There is a famous movie called 'The Wizard of Oz.' And in 'The Wizard of Oz,' there is a great line. Dorothy at some point in the movie turns to her little dog, Toto, and says: Toto, we're not in Kansas anymore. Well, Madam Secretary, while you're from Kansas, we're not in Kansas anymore. Some might say that we are actually in 'The Wizard of Oz' land given the parallel universes we appear to be habitating."

    (Gordon Donovan/Yahoo)
    Great joke! Because she is from Kansas!

    Well, not quite from Kansas. Later on in the hearing, Texas Republican Rep.
    Read More »from All these congressmen made terrible Wizard of Oz jokes about Sebelius
  • Sebelius on health care law rollout: 'No one indicated it could possibly go this wrong'

    The Obama administration official responsible for the implementation of key parts of the federal health care law apologized Wednesday for the disastrous rollout of the health insurance marketplace built by the government but vowed the problems would be fixed by the end of November.

    In sworn testimony before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius conceded that access to the federal website to buy insurance under the law "has been a miserably frustrating experience for way too many Americans."

    "You deserve better. I apologize,” Sebelius said. “I'm accountable to you for fixing these problems."

    Since its launch on Oct. 1, the government website has been set back with functional and accessibility problems that have prevented people seeking insurance from purchasing plans. Under the health care law passed in 2010, all Americans must be able to prove that they have insurance by March 31, 2014, and Sebelius told lawmakers that enough time

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