October 1, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Philadelphia-area lawmakers reflected the national political divide Monday night as the federal government skidded into a shutdown: split along clear party lines. While one area Republican, U.S. Rep. Charlie Dent of Allentown, made a high-profile push to end the latest fiscal skirmish with a government funding bill that would not make any changes to the Affordable Care Act - a condition Democrats have demanded - he could not rally other moderates to join him. Instead, all other local House Republicans, including many who represent districts that President Obama either won or narrowly lost a year ago, voted with the rest of their caucus to fund the government, but only if Democrats accepted a new set of proposed changes to the president's signature health-care law. By 9 p.m. Monday, the House had passed two new plans, and a third vote was expected shortly after midnight.
September 29, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - In a high-profile moment fraught with political implications, U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey (R., Pa.) voted Friday to block a spending bill needed to keep the government running, prompting Democratic attacks that painted him as "extreme. " Toomey, a Democratic target in a state that tilted blue last year, sided with GOP hard-liners in a key procedural vote that split the party between its establishment leaders and rising stars of the right. He joined Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Texas)
April 4, 2011
U.S. appeals health-law ruling CHICAGO - The Obama administration asked the U.S. appellate court in Atlanta to reverse a ruling by a federal judge in Florida that struck down health-care legislation because it would require almost every American buy health insurance. It asked the court to reverse the Jan. 31 ruling by U.S. District Judge C. Roger Vinson in Pensacola, in a suit filed by 26 states, including Pennsylvania, that the insurance mandate set to take effect in 2014 exceeds Congress' power to regulate interstate commerce.
July 2, 2012 |
The essence of conservatism Chief Justice John Roberts, in writing the majority opinion to uphold "Obamacare," showed the real meaning of conservatism ("Health law upheld," Friday). First, Roberts stated that it is not the job of the court to look for ways to overturn laws. In fact, Roberts referred to former Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes in stating that you should err on the side of upholding law if you can find any reason to do so. This is the opposite of a judicial activist who believes the court should, in effect, create new law. An even more conservative position was Roberts' statement that we get the government we elect and have to live with the consequences of the actions of those who legislate.
October 31, 2010
The choices Tuesday will shape policies in Harrisburg, Trenton, and Washington. Voters should focus on candidates with experience, independence, and integrity. Here's a recap of The Inquirer's endorsements: The race for Pennsylvania governor boasts a candidate with the experience and track record needed to run a complex bureaucracy. As Allegheny County chief executive, Democrat DAN ONORATO confronted budget deficits and demonstrated an ability to shrink a bloated bureaucracy.
July 23, 2013 |
Like businesses across the country, Angelo's restaurant has been recovering from a miserable economy, a load of debt, and a bottom line that until recently was the color of its special marinara sauce. So owner Michael Passalacqua probably speaks for many when he expresses relief about the decision to delay enforcing until 2015 the Affordable Care Act's mandate for employer health insurance. That was one challenge he didn't need next year, he said. He's glad for the extra time to figure out whether his Washington, Pa., restaurant must conform to the law and, if so, how. "It's nothing but a noose hanging right over my head," Passalacqua said.
November 22, 2011 |
After months of study, the Corbett administration said Tuesday that it was moving forward with a key - and widely supported - option offered by the federal healthcare overhaul: a state-run insurance exchange. Exchanges have gained neither the high-profile status nor the derision aimed at other parts of President Obama's program. But they are expected to transform the arduous process of buying health insurance for millions of people who get coverage individually or are covered by small businesses.
September 21, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Mike Fitzpatrick epitomizes the plight of a rare and diminishing breed in Washington: the Republican congressman who has to hew to the center to survive. Fitzpatrick, from Bucks County, represents a district that blends from suburban to rural, nearly evenly split between Republicans and Democrats. He has courted and won tea party backing while casting himself as a moderate problem-solver with the centrist group "No Labels. " So as some of the GOP's most defiant conservatives have urged a showdown over President Obama's health-care law and raised the specter of a government shutdown, Fitzpatrick has been squeezed in a political vise.
June 29, 2012
Inquirer staff writers Allyn Gaestel, Meeri Kim and Jessica Parks went to three locations Thursday to gauge reaction to the Supreme Court's ruling on the health-care law. Joy in Camden Cries of "Amen!" "Alleluia!" and "Praise the Lord" rang out in front of St. Paul's Episcopal Church on Thursday morning as members of Camden Churches Organized for People (CCOP) praised the Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act. "It's a death sentence lifted for me," said the Rev. Marilyn Dixon-Hill, a CCOP member.