tv News Al Jazeera October 1, 2013 1:00pm-1:31pm EDT
>> welcome to al jazeera. i'm morgan radford. here are the stories we're following for you right now. the halls of government are mostly silent after the shutdown began. >> when it comes to iran's nuclear weapons program, here's my thoughts. distrust, dismantle and verify. >> israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu telling the world not to trust iran when it comes to nuclear energy =fpl, ae affordable care act rolling out today.
>> it's been 13 hours since the first federal government shutdown in more than 17 years. and there's no indication it will end any time soon. congress is now back at work, the lawmakers still haven't grade on a funding bill to reopen the government. we're falling a big story from the united nations where israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu spoke, and we'll go to the rose garden where the president will speak. >> obama: good morning, everybody, at midnight last night for the first time in 17 years the republicans in congress chose to shut down the federal government. let me be more specific, one faction of one party in one house of congress in one branch of government shut down major parts of the government.
all because they didn't like one law. this republican shutdown did not have to happen. but i want every american to understand why it did happen. republicans in the house of representatives refuse to fund the government unless we defund it or dismantle the affordable care act. they've shut down the government over an ideological crusade to deny health insurance to millions of americans. in other words, they demanded ransom just for doing their job. many representatives including an increasing number of republicans have made it clear had they been allowed by speaker boehner to take an up or down vote, the votes of both parties would have kept the government
open and operating. we won't know the effects of this shutdown for some time. but we do know the last time the republicans shut down the government in 1996 it hurt our economy. and unlike 1996 our economy is still recover from thing from tt recession in generations. we know certain services and benefits that seniors, veterans and others must be put on old. certain offices and every national park and monument must be closed. while last night i signed legislation to make sure that our 1.4 million active duty military are paid through the shutdown, hundreds of civilian workers, many still on the job. many forced to stay home, aren't being paid. even if they have families to support and local businesses that rely on them. and we know that the longer this
shutdown continues, the worst the affects wil effects will be. more families will be hurt, more businesses will be harmed. once again i urge house republicans to reopen the government, restart the services that americans depend on and allow the public servants who have been sent home to return to work. this is only going to happen when republicans realize they don't get to hold the whole economy hostage over ideological demands. i said repeatedly i'm set to work with republicans and democrats to do the work we need to create jobs and get our house in fiscal over, over the long run. although i should add that this shutdown is not about spending or deficits or budgets, our deficits are falling the fastest
in 50 years. we've cut them in half since i took office. the demands that republicans are making would raise our deficits. so this shutdown is not about deficits, it's not about budgets, this shutdown is rolling back our efforts to provide health insurance to folks who don't have it. it's all about rolling back the affordable care act. this more than anything else seems to be what the learn party stands for these days. i know it's strange that one party would make keeping people uninsured the centerpiece of their agenda. that apparently is what it is. of course what is stranger still is that is shutting down our government doesn't accomplish their stated goal. the affordable care act is a law that passed the house, it spaed the senate. the supreme court ruled it constitutional. it is settled, and it is here to stay.
and because of its funding sources it's not impacted by a government shutdown. these americans are here with me today because even though the government is closed a big part of the affordable care act is now open for business. for them, millions like them, this is a historic day for many reasons. it's a long time coming. americans who have been forced to go without insurance can now now go to healthcare.gov and enroll in plans that have quality coverage. people will have six months to sign up. they'll have the opportunity in many cases for the first time in their lives to get affordable coverage that they desperately need. of course, if you're one of the 85% of americans who already had health insurance, you don't need to do a thing. you're benefiting from new
benefits and protections that have been in place for some time under this law. but for the 15% of americans who don't have health insurance this opportunity is life changing. let me just tell folks a few stories that are represented here today. a few years ago amanda barrett left her job in new york to take care of her insurance. for a while she had temporary insurance that covered her multiple did hmultiple sclerosi. after that ended she could not find coverage. now today she'll be able to get coverage. sky high premiums forced nancy to choose between paying rent and paying health insurance. she has been uninsured ever
since. she pays all her medical bills out of pocket and on hurry credit cards. nancy said they talk about those who fell through the cracks, i fell through the cracks ten years ago. now she can have coverage like everyone else. another woman had no insurance and she discovered she has a brain tumor. her daughter, a student at university of maryland, is considering dropping out of school to help pay her mom's bills. starting today, thanks to the affordable care act, she is get covered without forcing her daughter to give up on her dreams. so these stories of hard working americans sound familiar to you, well, starting to you, you, your friend, your family, coworkers will get coverage, too.
just visit www.healthcare.gov , and there you can look at insurance plans side by side. we've presented a list of quality affordable plans available in your area with clear descriptions of what each plan covers and what it will cost. you will find more choices, more competitions, and in many cases lower prices. many uninsured americans will be find coverage for $100 or less. don't take my word for it. check it ou out yourself and shw it to your family and friends. there is a hotline where you can apply over the phone and get help with the application. we're just yo giving you questio
questions that you might have. 1-800-318-3596. check out www.healthcare.gov . check out that. show your family and friends how to use it and we can get covered so once against the struggle that these folks have gone through and millions around the country have gone through for years finally get addressed. let me just remind people why i think this is so important. i heard a striking statistic yesterday. if you get cancer you are 70% more likely to live another five years if you have insurance than if you don't. think about that. that is what it means to have health insurance. set aside the issues of security and finances and how you're impacted by that. the stress involved in not knowing whether or not you're going to have healthcare. this is life or death stuff.
tens of thousands of americans die each year just because they don't have health insurance. millions more live with the fear they'll go broke if they get sick. today they begin to free millions of our fellow americans from that fear. already millions of young adults have been able to stay on their parents' plans until they turn 26. many seniors already have gotten a discount on their prescription medicines. already millions of families receive rebates who didn't pend enough on their healthcare. this law does not mean economic security for our families. it means we're finally dressing the drivers of our long-term deficits. it means a stronger economy. most republicans made a whole bunch of prediction abouts this
law that has not come through. there are no death panels. priceprice the three slowest raf health spending growth on record. it has fought destroyed our economy. our businesses created 7.5 billion new jobs our manufacturers are growing at the fastest rate in two and a half years. they have factored in affordable care act. they don't think it's a problem. what is weighing on the economy is not the affordable care act but the constant crises and unwillingness to pass by a faction of the republican party. there are going to be glitches
in the sign up that we will fix. there were times this morning where the site has been running more slowly than it normally will. the reason is more than one million people visited www www.healthcare.gov before 7:00 this morning. there are five time more users this morning than there ever have been on www.medicine www.medicinedcare.gov at one time. this gives a sense of how important this is to millions of americans around the country. that's a good thing. and we're going to be speeding things up for the next few hours to handle all this demand that exceeds anything that we had expected. consider just a couple of weeks ago apple rolled out a new operating system. within days they found a glitch.
so they fixed it. i don't remember anybody suggesting apple should stop selling iphones or ipads or threatening to shut down the company if they didn't. that's not how we do things in america. you don't root for failure. you get to work, we make things happen. we make them better. we keep going. so in that context i work with anybody who has got a serious idea to make the affordable care act work better. i will not give in to reckless demands to some of the republican party to deny health insurance to millions of hard working americans. i want republicans in congress to know these are the americans you hurt if you're allowed to dismantle this law. americans like amanda, nancy, those who finally have an opportunity for security and basic peace of mind including
members of congress, the notion that you would make a condition for reopening the government that i make sure these folks don't have healthcare. that doesn't make any sense. it doesn't make any sense. let me make one closing point. this republican shutdown threatens our economy at a time when millions of americans are still looking for work and businesses are still trying to get some traction. the time something not good. of course, a lot of republicans in the house ran for office two years ago promise to go shut down the government. so apparently they've gotten their wish. but as i said before the irony that the house republicans had to contend with is they shut down a whole bunch of parts of the government but the affordable care act is still open for business. this may be why you got many
republican governors, senators, even a growing number of reasonable republican congressman to tell the extreme right of their party to knock it off. pass am budget, move on. and i want to underscore the fact that congress does not just have to end this shutdown and reopen the government. congress generally has to stop governing by crisis. they have to break this habit. it is a drag on the economy. it is not worthy of this country. for example, one of the most important things congress has to do in the next couple of weeks is to raise what's called the debt ceiling. it's important to understand what this is. this is a routine vote. congress has taken this vote 45 times to raise the debt ceiling since ronald reagan took office. it does not cost the taxpayers a
single dime. it does not authorize anybody to spend any more money whatsoever. all it does is authorize the treasury to pay the bills on what congress has already spent. think about that. if you buy a car, and you've got a car note, you do not save money by not paying your car note. you're just a dead beat. if you buy a house, you don't save money by not authorizing yourself to pay the mortgage. you're just going to be foreclosed on your home. that's what this is about. it is routine. it is what they're supposed to do. this is not a concession to me. this is not some demand that is unreasonable that i'm making.
this is what congress is supposed to do as a routine matter. and they shouldn't wait until the last minute to do it. the last time republicans even threatened this course of action many of you remember back i in 2011 our economy staggered, our credit rating was downgraded for the first time. if they go through with it this time and force the united states to default on its obligations for the first time in history it will be far more dangerous than a government shutdown, as bad as a government shutdown is. it would be a bad economic shutdown. i'll speak on this in the coming days. but let me repeat, i will not negotiate over congress' responsibility to pay bills that has already racked up. i'm not going to allow anyone to drag the good name of united states of america through the mud for ideological demands. nobody gets to hurt our economy and millions of hard working
families over a law you don't like. there are a whole bunch of things that i would like to see passed through congress that the house republicans haven't passed yet, and i'm not out there saying well, i'm going to let america default unless congress does something that they don't want to do. that's not how adults operate. certainly that's not how a government should operate. that's true whether there is a democrat in this office or a republican in this office. it doesn't matter whether it's a democratic house of representatives or republican-controlled house of representatives there are certain rules that everybody abides by because we don't want to hurt other people just because we have a political disagreement. so my basic message to congress
is this: pass the budget, end the government shutdown. pay your bills and prevent an economic shutdown. don't wait. don't delay. don't put our economy or our people through this any longer. i'm more than happy to work with them on all kinds of issues. i want to get back to work on the things that the american people sent us to work on: creating new jobs, new growth, security for our middle class. we're better than this. certainly the american people are better than this. i believe what we've accomplished for amanda and nancy, and tens of millions of their fellow citizens on this day proves that even when the odds are long and the obstacles are many we are and always will be a country that can do great things together. thank you very much, everybody,
god bless you. thank you, all of you, for the great work you're doing, and thank you kathleen sebelius, and great work she's doing making sure that millions of americans are getting health insurance. >> we have randall pinkston at the white house. randall, what was your take away from the president's remarks? >> reporter: well, if anybody thought that there was going to be some talk of compromise, that word didn't come out of the president's mouth. he's obviously standing firm on his belief that what congress should do specifically what the republicans of the house of representatives should do is give both chambers an chance to vote on up and down legislation to keep the government going. he said he's prepared to work with republicans and democrats over spending, over the budget, but he said this is not about spending or the budget or
deficit. he said the deficit in the u.s. has been falling faster than it has fallen in the past 50 years. he said it has been cut by one-half since he has been in office. according to the president this entire dispute is all about americans, one faction of the republican party trying to overturn the affordable care act and the president will not allow that to happen. no talk of compromise. we are where we were, at logger heads and stale mates, and the government remains shut down. >> he did not say compromise, but he said he'll work with anyone who has a genuine interest to better obamacare. are there any talks taking place with the republicans? >> well, we don't know. we would assume, of course, that at this senior staff level there are conversations. the other night i was listening
to newt gingrich, the former speaker of the house who is republican, gingrich said he and president clinton spoke often, sometimes on a daily basis. they argued, they fought and talked a lot with each other. apparently there are no conversations going on between president and speaker boehner. until that happens who knows what is going to happen except the continuing stalemate. >> we'll continue to follow that stalemate. randall, thank you for joining us this afternoon. now al jazeera libby casey is line o live on capitol hill. republicans say that affordable care is not popular.
>> we're in the basic implementation stages. these stages and marketplaces are opening up. this is most geared for americans who don't have insurance. that's 15% of americans. the law by everyone's admission is quite complicated. it will be a lengthy roll out process and it is unpopular with many people especially conservatives who are represented by these by tea party republicans in the house of representatives. they're trying to get political wins and points against the white house. the president said himself the healthcare law is getting implemented. even though the federal government is in partial shutdown today the healthcare law is still rolling out, a piece of irony. we were talking with randall about what is going on behind the scenes, the conversations, the last conversation that the president had with the speaker and other members of congress last night, and you know, it's
not going anywhere fast. >> it's not going anywhere fast, but libby you just mentioned conservatives. we just lost libby due to technical difficulties. libby casey live on capitol hill. thank you for joining us. david schuster will walk us through the process. the president talked about the high demand slowing the system down. >> the president was giddy with how much demand there has been on these website. people are interested, maybe they're curious how much their insurance m.i.t. be. this is more of a curiosity. you don't need this right now. go to www.healthcare.gov.
>> web side after web side across the country today there is so much traffic going on through these websites that they're bringing them down and the president talked about fixing things. but however there are websites that are working. washington, d.c. they have their own system, and this is what it looks like. you put in your information, and calculate your costs and put in basic information, household
number, 46 years old, you calculate the information, and it sets it up with the plan you want. bronze, silver, gold, these have to do with deductibles and how much you want to pay up front, but it puts the amount right there. this is very much like kayak or travelosity. this is a fascinating system, so fascinating that the system has crashed. >> meanwhile heidi zhou castro is in houston, heidi? >> reporter: hey, morgan, take a look at the walls of this restaurant. this tells the story of how important the nasa community is here to frenchy's. it's been around since 1979 almost as long as johnson space center has been here next door.
frankie, you're the owner here. you care a lot about your clients, most of whom work next door righ right right now work o longer next door. >> yes, we've been here since 1979, and we make all the astronauts, nasa people. you're like family because they go to school--their kids go to school with your kids, they are family. >> it's certainly a hit, like family i know you're trying to help this community get through this as well. >> thank you so much, heidi. stay with al jazeera. s2úq@eñsy$x
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