PM says budget, which includes major spending on climate and health care reform, aims to ensure long term ‘economic and social security’
Weekly $27 cash payments, fuel discounts and half-price public transport are among the short-term sweeteners offered up by New Zealand’s government in its latest budget, as it tries to juggle the cost-of-living crisis with big-ticket spending commitments, including $11.1bn of healthcare system reform and $2.9bn responding to the climate crisis.
“While we know the current storm will pass, it is important we take the hard edges off,” prime minister Jacinda Ardern said in remarks accompanying the budget’s release.Continue reading...
Ron Johnson’s statement about scrapping Affordable Care Act if GOP wins control of Congress seen as open goal for Democrats
The Wisconsin senator Ron Johnson said Republicans should try again to repeal the Affordable Care Act if they take back power – then retreated, under fire from the Biden administration.
Speaking to Breitbart News, a far-right site, on Monday, Johnson said Republicans could “actually make good on what we established as our priorities” if they won control of Congress in midterms this year and the presidency in 2024.Continue reading...
Reports that a bipartisan bill seeking to ban the import of Russian oil could make it to a vote in the House this week
- Full story: Biden to ban Russian oil imports over Ukraine invasion
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Senator Ron Johnson is now backtracking from his comments on Breitbart News Radio, in which he discussed repealing and replacing Obamacare - the Affordable Care Act - if Republicans win the White House and the House and senate majorities in 2024.
“For example, if we’re going to repeal and replace Obamacare — I still think we need to fix our health-care system — we need to have the plan ahead of time so that once we get in office, we can implement it immediately, not knock around like we did last time and fail,” he said on air Monday.Continue reading...
Veteran Nevada senator who shepherded and protected Obamacare on its difficult passage into law
During a long, combative career in US political life, Harry Reid, who has died aged 82, made his most telling contribution as Democrat majority leader in the Senate. There, in 2010, he pushed through and then vigorously defended President Barack Obama’s groundbreaking healthcare reforms.
Given the huge strength of Republican feeling against “Obamacare”, the president needed a streetfighter to drive his measures through to the statute book – and Reid was the man for the job. Quietly spoken but toughened by a hard early life and years spent swimming in the shark-infested waters of Nevada politics, he fought through the deeply polarised atmosphere that surrounded Obama’s health reforms to shepherd the Affordable Care Act through the Democrat-controlled Senate.Continue reading...
- Nevada senator helped to pass Obama’s Affordable Care Act
- Reid called Trump ‘the worst president we’ve ever had’
Harry Reid, who emerged from the unforgiving political landscape of Las Vegas, Nevada, to lead the Senate Democrats for 12 turbulent years, died on Tuesday at age 82.
Reid died Tuesday, “peacefully” and surrounded by friends “following a courageous, four-year battle with pancreatic cancer,” Landra Reid said of her husband.Continue reading...
- Mitch McConnell says proposal is ‘rotten to the core’
- Manchin’s plan tries to attract bipartisan support in Senate
Christopher Staudinger reports for the Louisiana Illuminator and Floodlight, a nonprofit that partners with the Guardian:
One morning in September, word of layoffs began to spread quickly through Marathon Petroleum’s refinery in the small industrial community of Garyville, Louisiana.
Greetings from Washington, live blog readers.
Most of the city’s attention was focused on the supreme court yesterday, as the justices dismissed a Republican challenge to the Affordable Care Act. However, there were also some significant developments on Capitol Hill.
Democrats can change the packaging, but their plan for a power-grab of America’s electoral system is still rotten to the core. My full statement: https://t.co/HLRuDSZ3lSContinue reading...
Justices affirm constitutionality of Affordable Care Act amid Republican attacks on key provision
The US supreme court has upheld the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, after Republicans attempted to gut an important provision of the law during the Trump era.
In a 7-2 decision, the court ruled Republican states ultimately did not have “standing” or the right to sue. The ruling avoided the issue of whether the tax provision of the law called the “individual mandate”, and therefore the entire law, was unconstitutional.Continue reading...
- Officials ‘invalidating our injuries and experiences’, letter states
- Biden says US must redouble efforts to investigate virus origins
- Senate Republicans want to lower cost of $1.7tn infrastructure plan
Michigan’s Democratic secretary of state, Jocelyn Benson, was on the front lines of the protests and election disinformation fueled by Trump’s “Big Lie” about election fraud as the battleground state’s chief election official.
In a new interview with the Associated Press, Benson warns that the ongoing disputes and conspiracy theories around the 2020 election are only the beginning of what she sees as a sustained attack on American democracy that will culminate in a renewed attack on election legitimacy in 2024.
AP: Across the country, we are seeing several GOP-controlled legislatures seeking to exert more control over election officials. How concerned are you that we could end up seeing more of these outside ballot reviews like in Arizona or even takeovers of local election offices?
BENSON: I feel very strongly that the battles that we saw around 2020’s election ... was just the beginning of what is clearly turning out to be a multi-year, strategic, nationally coordinated, partisan assault on the vote in our country and on our democracy. And we will see another battle in the 2022 elections around that truth and around the security of the vote, around access to the vote. But it’s also all going to culminate, I believe, in an effort to try again in 2024 what those democracy deniers attempted to do in 2020 but failed. And in 2024, the bad actors, I believe, will be more coordinated, more strategic, better funded and will have the benefit of doing this work for a number of years. I’m deeply concerned about the future health of our democracy.
Democrats Move to Fulfill Biden’s Election Promise on Healthcare ‘Public Option’
Two Congressional Democrats are pushing to create a “public option” for healthcare coverage to compete with private health insurance plans, and aim to introduce legislation by the end of the year, NBC News reports.
A federal public option will help lower health care costs and guarantee that health care is a right not a privilege.@FrankPallone and I plan to work with our colleagues to craft comprehensive legislation to create a federal public option. https://t.co/Df0YmgEN35
Unlike 2009, @JoeLieberman isn't around to kill the public option. But now Democrats have thinner majorities, no hope of Republican support and are guaranteed to face an assault from health industry groups who are prepared to fight this. https://t.co/nMXYoQzPhGContinue reading...
Coalition budget delivers $30bn in tax breaks and money for fossil fuel projects but no measures to help struggling universities or clean energy projects. Follow all the latest news and reaction to the 2021 federal budget as it happens
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And along with the fact the international border is expected to remain closed for another year at least (a whole other year – which means stranded Australians have up to a year to wait to come home) there is also the issue of wage growth which doesn’t seem to be getting the attention it should.
For me these are the most important number out of the budget - slower wages growth than ever before, and nothing predicted over 2.5% till 2025.
Remember the RBA says wages need to grow above 3% in order to get interest rates to rise https://t.co/6HBeBZMKqM pic.twitter.com/qLZ7es4Dw4
There was nothing in the budget (again) for dental.
It’s kind of amazing how little fuss there is about an entire section of health being excised from universal health care. If you have ever needed to get to a dentist and can’t afford one, so have had to wait for a publicly funded position, you know just how detrimental to your health and life lack of access to good dental care is. I grew up with the school dental van visits as my only access to dental care and have had to rely on dental vouchers more than once.
More than six out of 10 over-75s in Australia suffer from gum disease, while more than one in three Australians aged 75 and over have complete tooth loss,” she said.
The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety heard distressing evidence of older patients going without basic dental care such as toothbrushing and denture cleaning.Continue reading...
Administration also extended the enrollment period for registering for subsidized health insurance coverage until 15 August
Joe Biden marked the 11th anniversary of the signing of the Affordable Care Act with a trip to Ohio on Tuesday, touting his efforts to reverse many Trump-era measures aimed at weakening the landmark health reform law, and pledging that his $1.9tn Covid rescue package would build on the ACA’s promise.Continue reading...