FROM Jerry Flanagan
More Insured, But Less Options Under Covered California, Obamacare has gone relatively smoothly. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any problems. The non-profit Consumer Watchdog has filed suit against Anthem Blue-Cross, which insures more Californians than any company except Kaiser. While Anthem Blue-Cross offered policies at low cost, plaintiffs say they were never told about an expensive trade-off.
President Obama's Healthcare 'Fix' President Obama spent almost an hour with reporters today, announcing a change in Obamacare . Conceding that his personal credibility is on the line because his promises about the Affordable Care Act didn't come true, he's telling insurance companies they can re-issue those cancelled policies people liked, even if they didn't comply with new rules for benefits. Will that smooth the way for a program mired in computer problems and political controversy?
Anthem Blue Cross Rate Hikes Galvanize Healthcare Reform Anthem Blue Cross of Woodland Hills provides health insurance for 800,000 Californians who aren’t covered by their employers. In early November, the company notified regulators in Sacramento that it was raising rates. The average increase was 25%--with some policy holders hit for 39%, but Anthem didn’t expect a big reaction. Then, the Obama White House got the news.
Will Health Insurance Be There When You Need It? LA City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo has sued Blue Shield for illegally rescinding coverage of 850 policy holders. Blue Shield calls it a “cheap political stunt…without merit.” But without agreeing to wrongdoing, Blue Shield will pay 3 million dollars to settle an investigation of such practices by Governor Schwarzenegger’s Department of Managed Health Care. Anthem Blue Cross will pay 13 million. It’s all about polices sold to individuals not protected by group benefits.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
Trump plays scolder-in-chief with NATO allies At the opening of NATO’s dramatic new headquarters in Brussels today, President Trump acknowledged that Article 5 — promising that “an attack on one nation is an attack on all” -- has only been invoked one time: in the aftermath of September 11. But the President failed to provide what 27 other Alliance members have been waiting for: a re-commitment by America’s new leader to Article 5. Instead, they got a scolding.
Human Rights in the era of Donald Trump President Trump’s UN Ambassador, Nikki Haley, said today the US might pull out of the United Nations’ Human Rights Council. Serious violators of human rights are members of the Council itself–and a US resignation could make things worse. Later on today’s show, now that he’s into his second term, comedian turned US Senator Al Franken is telling jokes again.