Explaining ‘Risk Corridors,’ The Next Obamacare IssueScott Clement:
The [proposed RNC] resolution contends that Republicans who remain silent on abortion fail to take advantage of wide public support for such abortion restrictions. The document was first reported by CNN's Peter Hamby.Read the whole piece, good for understanding why people think they are on the right side of the issue, whatever side they take.
The data are striking, but also perplexing: was timid rhetoric on abortion a major reason why Republicans such as Ken Cuccinelli in Virginia and Todd Akin in Missouri lost winnable races where abortion and women's rights became prominent issues? Many observers felt the opposite, that their strong anti-abortion stances cost them the elections.
The above is all you need to know to be a pundit yourself.
More politics and policy below the fold.
Forty-one years after the Supreme Court's landmark ruling in Roe v. Wade, two-thirds of the American population believe that decisions on abortion should be made between a woman, her family and her doctor, according to a HuffPost/YouGov poll conducted last week….The American public has long been evenly split on abortion from an ideological perspective. The new poll finds that 48 percent think abortion should be generally or always legal, while 47 percent think it should be generally or always illegal. But even among those who think abortion should be generally illegal, more think it should be legal in some circumstances (33 percent) than think it should be banned entirely (14 percent). And the new poll suggests that a strong majority of Americans think those exceptions should not be defined by politicians, but by women themselves. Sixty-four percent said 'decisions about abortion should be made by a woman and her doctor,' while 24 percent said that 'government has a right and obligation to pass restrictions on abortion.' Only 35 percent said they would be in favor of Congress passing new restrictions on abortion.Charleston Gazette:
Federal and state officials scrambled on Wednesday for more information following the surprise disclosure Tuesday that an additional chemical was also in the tank that spilled "Crude MCHM" into the Elk River public drinking water supply two weeks ago.CNBC:
Freedom Industries disclosed the information to state and federal regulators on Tuesday morning, but health impacts of the chemical remain unclear, and Freedom Industries has claimed the exact identify of the substance is "proprietary."
Enrollment in Medicaid spiked in December, aided by Obamacare exchanges and an expansion of the government-run health coverage program for the poor in 25 states.Indeed. And the numbers fit what Charles Gaba has been saying. Including that the numbers are confusing.
But it was far from clear just how many of the Medicaid enrollees are new people drawn by Affordable Care Act-related initiatives, as opposed to re-enrollments, according to a leading health-care analyst who called the data released Wednesday "confusing."
By the end of December, more than 6.3 million people were determined to be eligible for Medicaid or CHIP, the program covering children, through state-run agencies and state-based Obamacare exchanges, according to a Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services report released Wednesday.
That tally does not include the 750,000 or so people who were determined eligible in Medicaid through the federally-run Obamacare exchange HealthCare.gov.
Adding the two enrollment numbers together equals more than 7 million Medicaid-eligible determinations. But some of the determinations made by HealthCare.gov may be duplicative of state-based decisions.
Medicaid & CHIP: December Monthly Applications and Eligibility Determinations Report [.pdf]The difficulty in figuring out how many Medicaid patients are new, and how many are renewals is considerable. But last night Charles posted his best guestimate: a minimum 1,888,745 new Medicaid/CHIP enrollees, and undoubtedly more because some states have not separated new and renewed numbers.
Total Individuals Determined Eligible for Medicaid and CHIP by State Agencies (includes those newly eligible under the Affordable Care Act and those eligible under prior law and, for some states, renewals): 6,323,188
Yes, that's a horse's head walking by in Baltimore:
The most likely outcome of both of these investigations is a noticeable drop in Christie’s electoral influence and promise. Republicans across the country are starting to get scared of what the scandals in New Jersey could mean for them—especially since Christie is the most visible Republican governor in the country right now because of his role as chair of the Republican Governors Association. Ken Cuccinelli, who failed to beat Terry McAuliffe for Virginia’s gubernatorial seat last November said that Christie should step down, an opinion that could gain support if the investigations continue for months and, especially, if the bad publicity makes it difficult to raise money for the organization.Interesting piece about Christie that rings true re likely outcomes: failed presidential run, diminished governorship. But folks can’t bring themselves to speculate about criminal charges, esp. about Hoboken and Sandy.
In the end, the chief outcome of this investigation seems to be character study rather than criminal charges. As the New Yorker's Amy Davidson asked in her summation of the two investigations, “What are we ready to believe about Christie now—and about the kind of President he might be?”