News / USA

Obama Mocks Republicans for Opposing Health Care Law

Capitol building in Washington D.C., Sept. 19, 2013.
Capitol building in Washington D.C., Sept. 19, 2013.
VOA News
U.S. President Barack Obama has ridiculed congressional Republicans who continue to oppose his signature health care law set to take effect on Tuesday, October 1.

In a speech Thursday, Obama described Republican tactics to block the law as "crazy," and said they are worried the law will succeed, not that it will fail.

He accused the Republican opposition of trying to blackmail him into repealing or defunding the Affordable Care Act by threatening a partial government shutdown starting October 1.

Meanwhile, the top Republican in the U.S. House of Representatives, John Boehner, said it is unlikely the Republican-controlled House will pass a temporary spending bill that will fund the government beyond Tuesday.

Lawmakers in the Democrat-controlled Senate are preparing to vote on the bill.

The House is expected to approve a measure later this week that would allow the Treasury Department to increase its borrowing authority to pay the government's debts, while imposing a one-year delay on the Affordable Care Act, which expands health care coverage to millions of currently uninsured Americans.

Some polls show the American public is largely skeptical about the law, also known as Obamacare.

The temporary spending bill would fund the government, including the new health care law, until mid-November. But a vote probably will not occur until Friday, which would give House lawmakers little time to consider it before current funding levels run out on Monday at midnight.

The government could partially shut down if the House rejects the Senate's version.

The Senate began work on the funding measure Wednesday after Texas Republican Ted Cruz ended a marathon 21-hour speech in support of the bill passed by the House that would defund the health care act.

Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and other senior lawmakers refused to support Cruz's approach.   

Republican leaders fear a partial shutdown of the federal government would hurt the party's standing heading into next year's congressional elections. A government shutdown in the mid-1990s, when Republicans controlled both houses of Congress, boosted then-president Bill Clinton's re-election chances.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid