Thursday, October 31, 2013

OBAMACARE WEBSITE COMPANY CONTRIBUTED TO OBAMA CAMPAIGN

Have you heard of CGI Federal? It’s the company that received a $678 million no-bid contract to develop the disaster that is healthcare.gov. It is also the company whose officials are now coming under scrutiny for the roll out of the Obamacare exchange web portal. But it also seems like those officials are also buddy-buddy with the Obama administration.

According to The Daily Caller, Toni Townes-Whitley, a senior vice president at CGI Federal, is a Princeton classmate of First Lady Michelle Obama. Townes-Whitley and Mrs. Obama are both members of are both members of the Association of Black Princeton Alumni.

As reported by the Washington Examiner in early October, the Department of Health and Human Services reviewed only CGI’s bid for the Obamacare account. CGI was one of 16 companies qualified under the Bush administration to provide certain tech services to the federal government. A senior vice president for the company testified this week before The House Committee on Energy and Commerce that four companies submitted bids, but did not name those companies or explain why only CGI’s bid was considered.

According to Federal Election Commission Records, Toni Townes-Whitley gave $500 in 2011 and 2012 to Obama’s reelection, and another $1,000 to the Obama Victory Fund.

The Washington Examiner reports that senior officials at CGI Federal had White House access. Before being granted the no-bid contract, CGI Federal officials attended several invitation only addresses by President Obama. White House visitor logs show that “CGI Federal President Donna Ryan visited the White House six times prior to her company being selected to do the IT design work behind the high-profile website.”

Two of the meetings attended by CGI executives were with Vivek Kundra, Obama’s chief information officer. Kundra was a key figure in Obama administration information technology initiatives across the government.

Ryan met Kundra on June 21, 2010, in the latter’s Old Executive Office Building office, according to the White House visitor logs.

In addition to the $88 million contract awarded to CGI Federal for the health-insurance exchange website, the company has received a total of $422 million in contracts related to Obamacare since the legislation was signed into law, according to Bloomberg News.

[Read More…]

Ted Cruz criticizes DOJ for arguing international treaty can trump the Constitution

Justice Department attorneys are advancing an argument at the Supreme Court that could allow the government to invoke international treaties as a legal basis for policies such as gun control that conflict with the U.S. Constitution, according to Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas.

Their argument is that a law implementing an international treaty signed by the U.S. allows the federal government to prosecute a criminal case that would normally be handled by state or local authorities.

That is a dangerous argument, according to Cruz.

“The Constitution created a limited federal government with only specific enumerated powers,” Cruz told the Washington Examiner prior to giving a speech on the issue today at the Heritage Foundation.

“The Supreme Court should not interpret the treaty power in a manner that undermines this bedrock protection of individual liberty,” Cruz said.

In his speech, Cruz said the Justice Department is arguing “an absurd proposition” that “could be used as a backdoor way to undermine” Second Amendment rights, among other things.

The underlying case, Bond v. United States, involves a woman charged with violating the international ban on chemical weapons because she used toxic chemicals to harass a former friend who had an affair with her husband.

Under the Constitution, such an offense would be handled at the state level. In Bond’s case, the federal government prosecuted her under the Chemical Weapons Convention Implementation Act.

[Read More…]

Rand Paul to place hold on Fed chair nominee

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) has informed Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) of his intention to place a hold on Federal Reserve chair nominee, Dr. Janet Yellen, until the chamber votes on S. 209, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act.

“I am writing to convey my objection to floor consideration of the nomination of Dr. Janet Yellen to Chair the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve without also considering legislation to bring much-needed transparency to the Fed,” wrote Paul in a letter to Reid, delivering on a threat he made last week.

“As the Senate debates the nomination of the next head of the Federal Reserve, there is no more appropriate time to provide Congress with additional oversight and scrutiny of the actions and decisions of the central bank,” he continued. “Therefore, I request that my bipartisan legislation, S. 209, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act, be scheduled for an up or down vote concurrently with the Yellen nomination.”

The Federal Reserve Transparency Act is, essentially, the “Audit the Fed” measure, legislation that the Kentucky Republican’s father, former Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX), pushed during his time in Washington. The House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed the elder Paul’s measure last year with strong bipartisan support. Reid refused to bring it to the floor for a vote in the Senate, despite his past support for transparency at the United States’ central bank.

[Read More…]

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Jay Carney Berates Insurance Companies For Complying With Obamacare

Speaking to reporters Tuesday White House Press Secretary Jay Carney blamed loss of healthcare coverage for millions of Americans on insurance companies complying with the Affordable Care Act.

“Insurers pulled those plans away from them,” Carney said. “The law [Obamacare] could not order insurers not to cancel that plan.”

Millions of health insurance plans are no longer available because they do not meet Obamacare standards and regulations. Carney’s comments come less than 24 hours after information surfaced showing President Obama knew millions of Americans would be losing their health insurance plans under Obamacare despite promising, “If you like your health care plan, you will be able to keep your health care plan. Period. No one will take it away. No matter what.”

When pressed on the issue of millions losing individual insurance plans they wanted to keep, Carney said it is five percent of the population being affected by insurance loss. That five percent adds up to 14 million people.

[Read More…]

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A black box in your car? Some see a source of tax revenue

600

As America’s road planners struggle to find the cash to mend a crumbling highway system, many are beginning to see a solution in a little black box that fits neatly by the dashboard of your car.

The devices, which track every mile a motorist drives and transmit that information to bureaucrats, are at the center of a controversial attempt in Washington and state planning offices to overhaul the outdated system for funding America’s major roads.

The usually dull arena of highway planning has suddenly spawned intense debate and colorful alliances. Libertarians have joined environmental groups in lobbying to allow government to use the little boxes to keep track of the miles you drive, and possibly where you drive them — then use the information to draw up a tax bill.

The tea party is aghast. The American Civil Liberties Union is deeply concerned, too, raising a variety of privacy issues.

And while Congress can’t agree on whether to proceed, several states are not waiting. They are exploring how, over the next decade, they can move to a system in which drivers pay per mile of road they roll over. Thousands of motorists have already taken the black boxes, some of which have GPS monitoring, for a test drive.

[Read More…]