Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:17 AM
ProSense (116,464 posts)
Closing out President Obama's first term - we've come a long way
Pres.Obama urging state lawmakers to legalize gay marriage in Illinois
The End of the Iraq War: A Timeline
Osama bin Laden brought to justice
With troops headed home, time to rebuild America, Obama says in weekly address
Before the health care law, the President signed the expansion of CHIP.
Obama Signs Children’s Health Insurance Bill
By ROBERT PEAR
WASHINGTON — The House gave final approval on Wednesday to a bill extending health insurance to millions of low-income children, and President Obama signed it this afternoon, in the first of what he hopes will be many steps to guarantee coverage for all Americans.
The roll call ended a two-year odyssey for the child health legislation, which President George W. Bush adamantly opposed on the ground it would lead to “government-run health care for every American.”
In a major change, the bill allows states to cover certain legal immigrants — namely, children under 21 and pregnant women — as well as citizens.
Until now, legal immigrants have generally been barred from Medicaid and the State Children’s Health Insurance Program for five years after they enter the United States. States will now be able to cover those immigrants without the five-year delay.
- more -
Who Benefits from the ACA Medicaid Expansion?
A key element of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is the expansion of Medicaid to nearly all individuals with incomes up to 138 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL) ($15,415 for an individual; $26,344 for a family of three in 2012) in 2014. Medicaid currently provides health coverage for over 60 million individuals, including 1 in 4 children, but low parent eligibility levels and restrictions in eligibility for other adults mean that many low income individuals remain uninsured. The ACA expands coverage by setting a national Medicaid eligibility floor for nearly all groups. By 2016, Medicaid, along with the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), will cover an additional 17 million individuals, mostly low-income adults, leading to a significant reduction in the number of uninsured people.
Medicaid does not cover many low-income adults today. To qualify for Medicaid prior to health reform, individuals had to meet financial eligibility criteria and belong to one of the following specific groups: children, parents, pregnant women, people with severe disability, and seniors. Non-disabled adults without dependent children were generally excluded from Medicaid unless the state obtained a waiver to cover them. The federal government sets minimum eligibility levels for each category, which are up to 133% FPL for pregnant women and children but are much lower for parents (under 50% FPL in most states). States have the option to expand coverage to higher incomes, but Medicaid eligibility levels for adults remain very limited (Figure 1). Seventeen states limit Medicaid coverage to parents earning less than 50 percent of poverty ($9,545 for a family of 3), and only eight states provide full Medicaid coverage to other low-income adults. State-by state Medicaid eligibility levels for parents and other adults are available here.
The ACA expands Medicaid to a national floor of 138% of poverty ($15,415 for an individual; $26,344 for a family of three). The threshold is 133% FPL, but 5% of an individual’s income is disregarded, effectively raising the limit to 138% FPL. The expansion of coverage will make many low-income adults newly eligible for Medicaid and reduce the current variation in eligibility levels across states. To preserve the current base of coverage, states must also maintain minimum eligibility levels in place as of March 2010, when the law was signed. This requirement remains in effect until 2014 for adults and 2019 for children. Under the ACA, states also have the option to expand coverage early to low-income adults prior to 2014. To date, eight states (CA, CT, CO, DC, MN, MO, NJ and WA) have taken up this option to extend Medicaid to adults. Nearly all of these states previously provided solely state- or county-funded coverage to some low-income adults. By moving these adults to Medicaid and obtaining federal financing, these states were able to maintain and, in some cases, expand coverage. Together these early expansions covered over half a million adults as of April 2012.
Eligibility requirements for the elderly and persons with disabilities do not change under reform although some individuals with disabilities may become newly eligible under the adult expansion. Lawfully residing immigrants will be eligible for the Medicaid expansion, although many will continue to be subject to a five-year waiting period before they may enroll in coverage. States have the option to eliminate this five-year waiting period for children and pregnant women but not for other adults. Undocumented immigrants will remain ineligible for Medicaid.
- more -
Arizona Gov. Brewer Opts For ‘Obamacare’ Medicaid Expansion
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) on Monday said the state will join the Medicaid expansion under the new federal health care law, the Associated Press reported.
Her announcement came as a surprise to many observers, and it distinguishes Brewer from other Republican governors. The Supreme Court's ruling last summer on the Affordable Care Act, widely known as "Obamacare," made the Medicaid expansion under the federal law optional and state leaders such as Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R), Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) and South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) have already opted out.
But in her State of the State address on Monday, Brewer rejected the notion that a rejection of the expansion would reduce the federal government's deficit.
Before the domestic auto rescue, President Obama made$5 billion in Federal loans available to small auto parts suppliers:
The Treasury Department announced a $5 billion program to aid struggling auto-parts suppliers, raising the likelihood the government will extend more aid to General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC.
What a lot of folks, including politicians, don't seem to realize is that GM and Chrysler merely ASSEMBLE cars. They don't make the parts.
Obama rescued the Domestic Auto Industry.
But BEFORE that. BEFORE that. BEFORE he sent the domestic auto industry into structuered bankruptcy, he made sure the LITTLE GUYS....the SMALL manufacturing companies that make SPRINGS or BOLTS or LATCHES or TINY WIDGETS were able to stay afloat so that when GM got back on its feet again it didn't have to look to CHINA or MEXICO to make those parts because the previous suppliers had gone belly up.
- more -
Here's a great comment posted in response to this TPM piece: http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2013/01/obama-inauguration-legacy.php
Historians of the future will be compelled to weigh the daunting obstacles President Obama faced, as much or more than the accomplishments he forged from that industrial-strength domestic obstruction.
One only has to observe the inordinate number of filibusters he suffered, and the desperate billion dollar effort by shady and powerful bigots to deny him his second term, to understand just how hard-won his victories have been. The birthers, the Ben Gazians, the rabid haters are all side stories to that central theme.
Two abiding factors will arise from his legacy; one, that he swept up the broken pieces left by Bush and welded them back together into a functioning nation, and two, that despite the most pernicious effort in history to remove him, in the face of unprecedented suppression, We, the People stood up, went forth and used the ballot box to certify this good man, so he might become the great President we believe him to be,
Everything else is a footnote. Bin Laden, Healthcare reform, ending two wars that Bush started, all of it is noteworthy, but as a whole it is just the fact he was elected not once, but twice, that proves him great in historic terms.
Making history for a second term.
“Barack Obama is the first president in more than five decades to win at least 51 percent of the national popular vote twice, according to a revised vote count in New York eight weeks after the Nov. 6 election,” Bloomberg writes, adding, “The president nationally won 65.9 million votes -- or 51.1 percent -- against Republican challenger Mitt Romney, who took 60.9 million votes and 47.2 percent of the total cast, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Obama is the first president to achieve the 51 percent mark in two elections since Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower, who did it in 1952 and 1956, and the first Democrat to do so since Franklin D. Roosevelt, who won four consecutive White House races. Roosevelt received 53.4 percent of the vote -- his lowest -- in his last race in 1944.”
No time to rest on laurels!
Congratulations to President Obama and Vice President Biden.
Forward to a successful term two.
11 replies, 1392 views
Closing out President Obama's first term - we've come a long way (Original post)
Response to ProSense (Original post)
Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:34 AM
Politicub (7,369 posts)
1. An already impressive track record to build on
And now Obama's HHS gets to roll out the best parts of the ACA. So glad this isn't in the hands of the GOP.
And I believe he was just getting started.
Response to ProSense (Original post)
Sun Jan 20, 2013, 10:51 AM
Demo_Chris (6,234 posts)
2. He did some great things and some terrible things
Great was ending Iraq, killing OBL
Terrible would be:
* Expanding Patriot
* Indefinate detention
* Killing Americans without a trial
* Allowing BP to get away with destroying the Gulf
* No bankers prosecuted
* Banks that are now officially to big to prosecute
* Complete disregard for the poor
* Proposing dramatic and devistating CUTS to Social Security
I could go on, but why bother. Despite all this everyone here worked to see him reelected. For myself, I hope we get a NEW President Obama, a Democratic President Obama, but so far I am not optimistic.
Response to Demo_Chris (Reply #2)
Sun Jan 20, 2013, 12:30 PM
ProSense (116,464 posts)
6. Every Democratic President
is faced with the challenges of the day, from WWII and the Internment, the Korean War and Vietnam to Rwanda and Kosovo (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kosovo_War#Civilian_losses).
A Democratic President enacted the COLA.
Q3. Which political party started taxing Social Security annuities?
A3. The taxation of Social Security began in 1984 following passage of a set of Amendments in 1983, which were signed into law by President Reagan in April 1983. These amendments passed the Congress in 1983 on an overwhelmingly bi-partisan vote.
The basic rule put in place was that up to 50% of Social Security benefits could be added to taxable income, if the taxpayer's total income exceeded certain thresholds.
The taxation of benefits was a proposal which came from the Greenspan Commission appointed by President Reagan and chaired by Alan Greenspan (who went on to later become the Chairman of the Federal Reserve).
The full text of the Greenspan Commission report is available on our website.
President's Reagan's signing statement for the 1983 Amendments can also be found on our website.
A detailed explanation of the provisions of the 1983 law is also available on the website.
Q4. Which political party increased the taxes on Social Security annuities?
A4. In 1993, legislation was enacted which had the effect of increasing the tax put in place under the 1983 law. It raised from 50% to 85% the portion of Social Security benefits subject to taxation; but the increased percentage only applied to "higher income" beneficiaries. Beneficiaries of modest incomes might still be subject to the 50% rate, or to no taxation at all, depending on their overall taxable income.
This change in the tax rate was one provision in a massive Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA) passed that year. The OBRA 1993 legislation was deadlocked in the Senate on a tie vote of 50-50 and Vice President Al Gore cast the deciding vote in favor of passage. President Clinton signed the bill into law on August 10, 1993.
(You can find a brief historical summary of the development of taxation of Social Security benefits on the Social Security website.)
Thus far, President Obama has made no cuts to Social Security.
On indefinite detention, let's hope this Congress finally stops blocking funding for its closure.
Response to ProSense (Original post)
Sun Jan 20, 2013, 01:53 PM
Rex (64,926 posts)
9. So much better than that other guy he replaced!
You know, the one that dropped the ball on 9/11, sent our military professionals to their deaths for profit in Iraq and in general tried his BEST to destroy this country!
I can't remember his name now...dirt bag comes to mind, but that is it.