• Thursday December 12, 2013 Happening Now - News on Obamacare; Senate Standoff; Budget Deal Today?

      U-G-L-Y.. The Senate ain't got no alibi.. it's ugly in the Senate right now where they pulled an all-nighter in the latest battle over the war between Republicans and Dems in what's supposed to be the nation's most august government body.

      Still angry over the Dems use of the so-called nuclear option, Senate Republicans are refusing to give up debate time as Harry Reid continues to try to push through 11 more nominees this week. Reid says he'll force the Senate to remain in session through Christmas if he has to. Bah humbug!

      Meantime, prospects have improved for a bipartisan budget deal that would fund the government through 2015. Speaker Boehner expected to bring it to a vote in the House later today.

      Lots of new angles on the Affordable Care Act today.

      Yesterday we told you about the new enrollment numbers that suggested things we're improving, but not quickly enough to meet WH goals. HHS Secy Kathleen Sebelius says things are improving and the system is back on track. She also called for an Inspector General report on the problems with the rollout.

      Today, there's a new hearing into Obamacare's impact on doctors and plan premiums. Mike Emanuel reporting.

      0930EST -- House Oversight and Govt Reform Cmte holds hearing entitled "ObamaCare's Impact on Premiums and Provider Networks." OrthoArizona Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. Eric Novack, NYC Ophthalmologist Dr. Patricia McLaughlin, The Multiple Sclerosis Center of Atlanta neurologist Dr. Jeffrey English, Manhattan Institute for Policy Research sr fellow Dr. Avik S. A. Roy, The Heritage Foundation sr research fellow Edmund Haislmaier, and Georgetown Univ McCourt School of Public Policy prof Dr. Judith Feder testify. LIVE

      New federal figures show new disparities in Americans who are covered. More folks in states that have fully embraced the law are getting insurance than in states that have fought the rollout.

      It's especially glaring when you look at Medicaid expansion.

      The Washington Post reports today on the "coverage gap" problem. Some folks who've had their policies cancelled haven't been able to enroll on the exchanges.

      The Wall Street Journal reports on the problem of not enough young people signing up, and the Obama Administration efforts to change that.

      IN other news,

      There are hearings on the oversight of the FCC on the Hill today. Cell phones on planes likely to be topic #1. Doug McKelway reporting.

      We get weekly jobless numbers and some reads on retail sales today.

      We get new numbers of this year's flu season so far. Jonathan Serrie reporting.

      Houston, we have a problem. There is a malfunctioning cooling pump on the International Space Station that may require an emergency space walk. Casey Stegall reporting.

      Julie Banderas will wrap up the Golden Globes nominations today.

      There are some new signs the Ukrainian President may be having a change of heart over closer ties to Europe.. Stay tuned.

      - Clint Henderson

      @ClintPHenderson

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