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Tags: 47 | Million | Uninsured

Obama's '47 Million Uninsured' Claim Is False

By    |   Monday, 27 July 2009 02:42 PM EDT

Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. Obama's '47 Million Uninsured' Claim Is False
2. Sen. Kit Bond: Stop 'Cherry-Picking' Intelligence
3. Obama Extends Secret Service Guard for Cheney
4. Lobbyists Still Raking in Big Bucks in Washington


1. Obama's '47 Million Uninsured' Claim Is False

President Barack Obama claimed during his Wednesday night press conference that there are 47 million Americans without health insurance.

A simple check with the U.S. Census Bureau would have told him otherwise.

Obama said: "This is not just about the 47 million Americans who have no health insurance."

That assertion conflicts with data in the Census Bureau report "Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2007." The report was issued in August 2008 and contains the most up-to-date official data on the number of uninsured in the U.S.

The report discloses that there were 45.65 million people in the U.S. who did not have health insurance in 2007.

However, it also reveals that there were 9.73 million foreigners — foreign-born non-citizens who were in the country in 2007 — included in that number. So the number of uninsured Americans was actually 35.92 million.

And of those, "there were also 9.1 million people making more than $75,000 per year who did not choose to purchase health insurance," CNSNews stated in a report based on the Census Bureau data.

That brings the number of Americans who lack health insurance presumably for financial reasons down less than 27 million.

The Census Bureau report also shows that the number of people without insurance actually went down in 2007 compared to the previous year — from 47 million to 45.65 million — while the number with insurance rose from 249.8 million to 253.4 million.

The next Census Bureau report disclosing health insurance data, with 2008 numbers, is scheduled to be released in August, and could figure in the healthcare reform debate.

Editor's Note:

2. Sen. Kit Bond: Stop 'Cherry-Picking' Intelligence

Sen. Kit Bond has successfully introduced an amendment that would force the CIA to release documents relating to the interrogation of terrorist detainees.

The amendment is included in the Intelligence Authorization bill for Fiscal 2010, which has been passed by the Senate Intelligence Committee.

The Missouri Republican, vice chairman of the committee, said on his Web site that the amendment "would require the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency to make publicly available unclassified versions of four documents regarding the information gained from high-value detainees."

Bond's office said in a statement: "Senator Bond believes that ordinarily our nation's secrets should remain classified, particularly in a time of war. The Administration, however, has ‘cherry-picked’ the release of classified information that only tells one side of the story, to the detriment of our national security.

"When President Obama declassified the highly-sensitive legal memos detailing our nation’s interrogation program, the Administration began releasing information selectively, withholding any evidence of the program’s value, even editing [Director of National Intelligence Dennis] Blair’s public statement that acknowledged its value, and doing little to counter unfounded attacks against our terror fighters at the CIA . . .

"It’s time for this cherry-picking to end. Protecting American families from terrorist attacks should not be a political issue and the American people deserve to hear what life-saving information was obtained from terrorist interrogation.

"The American people deserve more than just one side of the story."

Editor's Note:

3. Obama Extends Secret Service Guard for Cheney

Former Vice President Dick Cheney's Secret Service protection, which was due to expire this past week, has been extended for at least another six months.

Vice presidents normally receive only six months of protection at taxpayers' expense after they leave office. But Cheney requested an extension, and President Barack Obama — whom Cheney has criticized in interviews in recent months — authorized it.

If Obama had denied the request, Cheney would have been forced to hire his own security agents or go without protection, the New York Daily News noted.

Cheney can ask for another extension when the new 6-month term runs out, and sources close to the former vice president predicted that he would do so.

Editor's Note:

4. Lobbyists Still Raking in Big Bucks in Washington

During the presidential campaign, Barack Obama was seen as critical of lobbyists when he said he would not accept their contributions and vowed that "they won't find a job in my White House."

But now that Obama is in office, the lobbying industry is still flourishing in the nation's capital, with some firms reporting sharply increased earnings.

Lobbying firms had until midnight on July 20 to file reports on their second-quarter revenues with Congress, as required.

"And with a major push for healthcare reform, a $787 billion economic stimulus package, and proposals to tighten the regulation of Wall Street, there was plenty to lobby," Politico observed.

The Podesta Group was one lobbying firm that has prospered this year, raking in nearly $11.6 million in the first six months of 2009 — a 57 percent increase compared to the same period last year. The firm is led by Tony Podesta, whose brother John headed Obama's transition team.

Patton Boggs beat all other lobbying firms in the 6-month period, receiving $18.5 million to influence legislation on Capitol Hill, according to Politico.

Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck reported $9.2 million in earnings through midyear, a 33 percent rise over the same period last year.

"Congress and the executive branch are moving aggressively into a number of really big issue areas in a manner that business feels the need to participate in a way to make sure their voices are heard," Al Mottur, managing partner of Brownstein's Washington office, told The Hill newspaper.

Not all lobbying firms are enjoying increased revenues during the Obama administration. Quinn Gillespie & Associates was among the companies reporting a drop in earnings over the last six months. The company brought in $6.8 million, an 8 percent drop from its mid-year 2008 revenue totals, as the recession forces some clients to cut back on their lobbying outlays.

Editor's Note:

Editor's Notes:

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Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):1. Obama's '47 Million Uninsured' Claim Is False2. Sen. Kit Bond: Stop 'Cherry-Picking' Intelligence3. Obama Extends Secret Service Guard for Cheney 4. Lobbyists Still Raking in Big Bucks in Washington  1. Obama's '47 Million...
Monday, 27 July 2009 02:42 PM
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