Christie in Nashville: Smacks Obama on Middle East Policy, Calls for Obamacare Repeal

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie talks with reporters at the National Governors Association convention Saturday, July 12, 2014, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo | Mark Humphrey)

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie talks with reporters at the National Governors Association convention Saturday, July 12, 2014, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo | Mark Humphrey)

Speaking to reporters Saturday at a conference of the National Governors Association in Nashville, Tennessee, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie continued to talk like a man with plans for a 2016 presidential run while finding new ways to be coy about actually committing to said presidential run. 

For starters, reports that Christie took former BFF President Barack Obama to task for his foreign policy in the Middle East:
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Mennonite-Owned Business Wins SCOTUS Birth Control Ruling

By now, you’ve probably heard that Hobby Lobby won its case challenging the ObamaCare mandate that private employers provide birth control to female employees who were already receiving employer-provided health insurance. Hobby Lobby argued that providing birth control violated the religious beliefs of the company’s owners.

Less-publicized: A Pennsylvania company was also one of the challengers to the mandate, and is claiming victory today:

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Pat Toomey’s Wife *Did* Get Insurance Through Obamacare

For the past week, Pat Toomey’s been plastered all over whatever device you use to consume political bloviating, crowing about his wife’s failed attempt to obtain health insurance through Obamacare. The Daily News’s Chris Brennan debunked that canard today with a great little scoop.

Toomey’s broadcast left out one significant piece of information: Despite the initial website difficulty, the Toomeys were able to sign up for health-care insurance through an exchange.

Kris Toomey started trying to sign up on Dec. 2 and was successful on Dec. 11, three days before her husband’s radio address, according to his spokeswoman.

Oh, snap. Here’s hoping this doesn’t stay buried in the 21st paragraph of a page seven column in today’s Daily News.

Obamacare’s Awful Choice Between Contraception and Religious Freedom

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Are you for religious freedom or for women’s access to birth control? Me, I’m for both, but it sure doesn’t look like we’ll be able to leave it there.

Soon, the Supreme Court will hear a case in which private employers — including, notably, the craft-store chain Hobby Lobby — challenge Obamacare’s new mandate that employer-provided health insurance policies include contraception coverage. The employers say the edict violates their religious beliefs against birth control; the law’s defenders say that corportations like Hobby Lobby aren’t religious institutions and thus aren’t owed exemptions from a requirement that will be beneficial to millions of women.

And they’re both right.

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Prepare Thyself: How to Civilly Discuss Obamacare at Thanksgiving Dinner

miker /

miker /

Maybe it’s your stoutly Republican Uncle Joe, who you’re sure is gonna ruin Thanksgiving dinner by railing about how the Affordable Care Act is turning Amurrrica into a socialist paradise. Maybe it’s your wifty-liberal Cousin Tammy, who’s thrilled to death to be getting her birth-control pills for free. (Overshare!)

Over at the Washington Post’s Health Reform Watch blog, Sarah Kliff has “A Guide to Surviving Obamacare Debates at Thanksgiving,” which helpfully breaks down how to resolve arguments with, you know, actual information. Not that actual information ever resolves arguments in my family, though.

The Clintons Were Right: Where Obamacare (Maybe) Went Wrong


Watching all the fuss and muss surrounding the launch of Obamacare these last few weeks, I’ve been struck by an unwelcome thought:

Maybe the Clintons were right.

The Clintons — Bill and Hillary both, back when Bill was president — emerged from the last fight for universal health care pretty wounded, politically. The Democrats lost control of Congress for the first time in a generation. The president was reduced to asserting his Constitutional relevance to the press. And the pair seemed to lose the courage of their liberal convictions.

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Did Just Tell Me to Screw Myself?

Curious as to how much I could save with the Affordable Care Act, I tried to sign on to to start the application process. As I typed in the address, President Obama was live on TV apologizing to America and promising that the month-long national Obamacare glitchfest nightmare was over.

I had tried to sign on twice before. When I tried three weeks ago, I was just sharing in the collective misery of my fellow Americans. I got a message that due to volume I had to wait. That was at 3 p.m. The message was still there when I went to bed at 11 p.m.

I tried again earlier this week and I got to the page with the button that read “Create Account.” When I clicked it, nothing happened. I tried another computer, and still the button didn’t work. I clicked on the live chat and when I told “Mahmoud” that the button wasn’t working, he first sent a pre-typed message with a long list of solutions to other problems. When I wrote again that the “Create Account” button wasn’t working, he responded that the site was having problems with “glitches.” Yeah, I heard about that somewhere. He promised that “We’ll continue working to improve the site.”

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Sorry Sorry Sorry Sorry Sorry


I’m sick of “sorry.”

A colossal string of clusterfucks over the past week triggered a litany of public apologies. As luck would have it, the mea culpas were as bad as the screw ups. The apologies were too late, too vague, or too blatantly insincere to assuage anybody.

As Oliver Wendell Holmes said, “Apology is only egotism wrong side out.”

CBS’s 60 Minutes spent a year researching a piece on the Benghazi attacks, only to be duped by a phony eyewitness. After defending her reporting for days, correspondent Lara Logan and her boss, Jeff Fager, made the media rounds of “sorry.” Read more »

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