Tag Archives: state of the union

Report: Obamacare Website Sharing Users’ Information with Third-Party Tech Firms

On Tuesday, a report was released that shed light on the vulnerability of HealthCare.gov users’ information to third-party tech firms.

Following an investigation, the Associated Press revealed that the HealthCare.gov website is “quietly sending consumers’ personal data to private companies that specialize in advertising and analyzing Internet data for performance and marketing.”

This personal data may include the user’s Internet address, age, ZIP code, income, and information on whether the user smokes, or is pregnant.

According to the Associated Press, while the Obama administration claims the website’s connections to data firms “were intended to help improve the consumer experience,” there were connections to “dozens of third-party tech firms,” and seven of the companies were “also collecting highly specific information.”

In a letter to the Obama administration, Republican Senators Orrin Hatch of Utah, and Charles Grassley of Iowa voiced their concerns:

“This new information is extremely concerning, not only because it violates the privacy of millions of Americans, but because it may potentially compromise their security.”

The Associated Press reported that although third-party sites embedded on HealthCare.gov can’t see a user’s “name, birth date or Social Security number,” they can correlate the fact that the computer accessed the government website with the user’s other Internet activities.

While Cybersecurity was one of the topics Obama discussed during his State of the Union address on Tuesday night, the emphasis was on keeping private information from falling into the hands of foreign nations, rather than keeping users’ private information from being shared by the U.S. government

No foreign nation, no hacker, should be able to shut down our networks, steal our trade secrets, or invade the privacy of American families, especially our kids,” said Obama. “We are making sure our government integrates intelligence to combat cyber-threats, just as we have done to combat terrorism.”

Rand Paul releases own State of the Union speech

After President Obama gave his State of the Union speech Tuesday night, Senator Rand Paul released his own State of the Union speech online.

Paul starts by saying, “All is not well in America,” and from here he outlines what he thinks is wrong in the country.

The first thing Paul says is needed in America is “new leadership.” He does not mean get rid of the president, rather this is a call for a limit to the number of terms congressmen and other high ranking officials can serve. Currently, the U.S. has 11 people in the House or Senate who have served 35+ years as political leaders. Paul says by eliminating the limitless number of terms these leaders can have, new blood will flow into Washington, bringing fresh and new ideas.

As the president took time in his speech to outline his plan to continue to fight the war on poverty, Paul says he believes the war on poverty has failed. “Income inequality has worsened under this administration, and tonight, President Obama offers more of the same policies,” said Paul. “Policies which allow the poor to get poorer, and the rich to get richer…[Americans] don’t want a handout but a hand-up.”

Then, Paul takes a jab at Congress for their failure to balance the national budget, asking how Congress cannot balance a budget like every other American household? Paul says if Congress cannot balance the budget for one reason or another, an amendment should be added to make balancing the budget a mandatory act of Congress.

After mentioning an increase in the national debt, Paul calls out Hillary Clinton and what he calls her war in Libya. “Libya is now a jihadist wonderland,” says Paul, who then says we are more at risk for terrorist attacks “than ever before,” because of the actions in Libya.

Shortly afterward this mention, he says we need to not worry about the Middle East since war has been in the region for thousands of years, and instead we should worry about our issues here in the U.S.

Then in an odd instance, Paul seems to advocate for universal healthcare, but not President Obama’s version of healthcare. “It is a noble aspiration and a moral obligation to make sure our fellow man is provided for, that medical treatment is made available to all.”

While President Obama may have limited the choice of doctors available to some citizens, Paul says we should have the option to choose which doctor we want within our healthcare plan. “Everyone knows our healthcare system needed reforming, but it was the wrong prescription to choose more government instead of more consumer choice and competition. Obamacare restriction freedom…” Paul’s answer to fix the president’s healthcare plan, “Let’s try freedom again, it worked for over 200 years.”

A moment was also taken to propose a flat tax, as well as a cut to national spending.

In the last minutes of his speech, Paul rehashes many of his main talking points which have been seen in the news and heard in his many speeches. He wants to hold political leaders accountable for their actions, he asks how we can trust members of Congress since they only have a 10 percent approval rating, and then says the government has no right to collect our phone data and he backs this up with a mention of the Constitution.

Before ending, Paul says he will propose an audit of the Pentagon to “seek ways  to make our defense department more modern and efficient without breaking the bank.”

The speech does not seem to be a response to President Obama’s State of the Union speech, rather it appears to be a gathering of all of Paul’s talking points over the last few years, compiled into one consistent speech. He doesn’t offer many counterpoints to the president’s speech, or alternatives to what the president said. Instead, he tries to strengthen his political stance on a few issues, and he attempts to reach the moderates who are upset with the state of politics in Washington.

Obama’s “Robin Hood” Plan to Collect $320 Billion in New Taxes

On Saturday, White House officials announced that President Obama’s upcoming State of the Union address will include a plan to increase tax credits for the middle class, with $320 billion in revenue obtained by increasing taxes on the wealthy over the next ten years.

Americans for Tax Reform reported that Obama’s budget will include five major tax increases: a capital gains rate hike, an increase in the death tax rate, an increased tax on banks, a tax increase on families saving for college, and a tax increase in retirement plans.

According to the Associated Press, the capital gains rate hike would “increase the total top capital gains rate on couples with incomes above $500,000 to 28 percent,” which has “already been raised from 15 percent to 23.8 percent” during Obama’s presidency.

Obama’s changes in the death tax rate would eliminate a tax break on inheritances, where individuals pay both income and estate taxes on the same dollars. This would close a “loophole” that Obama has suggested is a “huge scam that wealthy people exploit,” according to Forbes.

The Guardian reported that Obama’s proposed “Bank Tax” will put a new 0.07% tax on the liabilities of U.S. financial firms with assets of more than $50 billion, “making it more costly for them to borrow heavily.”

Obama’s plan also includes increased taxes on families saving for college. While the current law lets money put in 529 plans, or college savings accounts, grow tax-free, Obama’s proposal would require that earnings “face taxation upon withdrawal, even if the withdrawal is to pay for college,” according to Americans for Tax Reform.

Politico reported that Obama plans to increase taxes on retirement plans such as the IRA and 401(k), by capping the amount an individual can accumulate in the account at $3.4 million, giving retirees a limit of $210,000 in annual income.

Once accumulating the money from the wealthy, the Associated Press reported that Obama plans to give a “new $500 ‘second earner’ tax credit for families where both spouses work,” and an expanded child care tax credit of up to “$3,000 per child under age 5.”

According to Politico, Obama also plans to “expand tax breaks for small businesses that automatically enroll their employees in retirement savings accounts.

NPR reported that Obama’s plans have been met with criticism from Republicans in Congress, such as a spokesperson for Representative Paul Ryan who said that the plan was “not a serious proposal.”

The Senate’s top tax law writer, Senator Orrin Hatch, told Reuters that Obama “needs to stop listening to his liberal allies who want to raise taxes at all costs and start working with Congress to fix our broken tax code.

Bush’s “Axis of Evil” Becomes Obama’s “Network of Death”

When Barack Obama ran for President of the United States in 2008, he was adamant about setting himself apart from President George W. Bush. However, given Obama’s recent announcements regarding the war in the Middle East, it has left many wondering just how different Obama is from his predecessor.

In his campaign for election in 2008, and in his campaign for re-election in 2012, Obama emphasized the fact that he intended to “end the war in Iraq.”

While Obama followed through on his promise, and all troops were removed from Iraq by December 2011, his recent decision to attack Islamic State militants in both Iraq and Syria via airstrike has left the country wondering whether ground troops returning to Iraq will be the next step.

Despite his attempt to set himself on the opposite end of the spectrum from Bush, Obama’s latest strategy has many looking back at Bush’s actions prior to sending ground troops into Iraq in 2003.

In January 2002, President Bush gave a State of the Union Address, in which he warned the American people of the danger posed by the Iraqi regime, and insisted that the United States must take action.

States like these, and their terrorist allies, constitute an axis of evil, arming to threaten the peace of the world. By seeking weapons of mass destruction, these regimes pose a grave and growing danger. They could provide these arms to terrorists, giving them the means to match their hatred. They could attack our allies or attempt to blackmail the United States. In any of these cases, the price of indifference would be catastrophic.

Bush vowed that the United State would work closely with their “coalition” to deny terrorists and their state sponsors “the materials, technology and expertise to make and deliver weapons of mass destruction.

Bush also highlighted the fact that Americans should fear the Iraqi regime, because of its hostility toward America, and its support for terror.

This is a regime that has already used poison gas to murder thousands of its own citizens, leaving the bodies of mothers huddled over their dead children,” said Bush. “This is a regime that has something to hide from the civilized world.”

On Wednesday, President Obama addressed the United Nations General Assembly, to garner support for his war against the Islamic State of Syria and the Levant (ISIL).

 “There can be no reasoning – no negotiation – with this brand of evil. The only language understood by killers like this is the language of force. So the United States of America will work with a broad coalition to dismantle this network of death.”

Both Bush and Obama vowed that the United States would not be alone, but would instead work closely with a coalition. In the same way Bush used the tactic of fear, and described why Americans should be wary of the Iraqi regime, Obama highlighted the gruesome actions of the Islamic State.

Innocent children have been gunned down. Bodies have been dumped in mass graves. Religious minorities have been starved to death,” said Obama. “In the most horrific crimes imaginable, innocent human beings have been beheaded, with videos of the atrocity distributed to shock the conscience of the world.

Obama also mirrored his predecessor, when he used the phrase “network of death,” which has a similar context to the “axis of evil” used by Bush.

However, a former White House speechwriter, Michael Gerson, who helped to coin Bush’s “axis of evil,” claimed that “When dealing with an ideology that inspires beheadings and mass murder, the English language only offers so many words that carry sufficient moral weight. ‘Evil’ and ‘death’ are two of them.

(Video) Rand Paul delivers rebuttal to Obama’s SOTU speech

WASHINGTON, January 28, 2014– Rand Paul (R-Ky.) delivered a rebuttal to rebuke President Obama’s State of the Union address. Paul echoes former President Reagan multiple times. Paul also criticizes Obama for government spending and “job creation”.

Paul is expected to launch a bid for the White House in 2016.

Watch the full speech below.

Follow Michael Lotfi on Facebook & on Twitter: @MichaelLotfi

Congressman Left Obama’s SOTU Speech Early Because He “Could Not Bear To Watch”


Several Republican officials publicly expressed dissatisfaction with President Obama’s State of the Union address last night. But one congressman from Texas, Steve Stockman, was so disgusted with Obama’s speech that he actually left early.

Stockman said in a press release, “Tonight I left early after hearing how the President is further abusing his Constitutional powers. I could not bear to watch as he continued to cross the clearly-defined boundaries of the Constitutional separation of powers. Needless to say, I am deeply disappointed in the tone and content of tonight’s address.”

He continued, “After five years in office Obama refuses to admit his policies have failed. He instead demands we double down on the bitter class warfare that has left Americans jobless and hopeless.”

Stockman was especially disturbed by Obama’s promise to “act on his own,” without Congress. The Texas Senator said, “Obama has openly vowed to break his oath of office and begin enacting his own brand of law through executive decree. This is a wholesale violation of his oath of office and a disqualifying offense.”

Many of Stockman’s Republican colleagues shared his sentiment. Rep. Gregg Harper (R-Miss.) said, “The president’s attempt to intimidate Congress by abusing executive power demonstrates a serious unwillingness to work with the coequal legislative branch of government.”

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) said, “Last night President Obama had the opportunity to answer critical questions that millions of Americans are asking all around the country, but he didn’t, which is precisely why so many Americans have lost trust in this President.”

Many Democrats, on the other hand, had positive responses to Obama’s State of the Union address.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-Cal.) said, “President Obama spoke directly to the highest aspirations of the American people by defining a vision of opportunity and optimism for our future. His initiatives will build an economy that works for everyone.”

What did you think of Obama’s speech? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Texas Congressman On House Floor: Obama Is A “Socialistic Dictator”


One political tweet about President Obama caught the attention of thousands last night.

It was from Republican Rep. Randy Weber of Texas. From the House floor around 8:00pm EST, Weber tweeted, “On floor of house waitin on ‘Kommandant-In-Chef’… the Socialistic dictator who’s been feeding US a line or is it “A-Lying?”

Screenshot 2014-01-29 at 1.19.41 AM

The reaction to Weber’s tweet has been mixed, but mostly negative. Here were a few responses:

Screenshot 2014-01-29 at 10.19.47 AM

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The State Of The Union Drinking Game


Libertarian groups and pundits around the country have come up with drinking games for President Obama’s State of the Union address tonight.

Here’s my personal version of the game:

Drink every time Obama says “income equality.”

Drink every time he says “middle class.”

Drink every time he says “income gap.”

Drink every time he says “equality.”

Drink every time he says “investment.”

Drink every time he says “let me be clear.”

Drink every time he says “cooperate.”

Drink every time he blames Congress for his problems.

Drink every time he says people need to pay their “fair share.”

Drink every time he says the economy is “recovering.”

Drink every time he says Obamacare is “working better than we expected.”

Drink every time he says he is prepared to “act on my own.”


On second thought, you probably shouldn’t follow the rules of this game — you’d have a horrible hangover tomorrow.

Let us know what you think of Obama’s speech as you watch it tonight and look out for these talking points along the way. Tweet your thoughts to me @KristinBTate.


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TATE: Talking Points You Will Definitely Hear From Obama Tonight


According to the mainstream media, President Obama’s State of the Union Address will be a significant event — one that will be a “defining test.”


We all know what Obama’s speeches are like and tonight’s will be no different. The State of the Union will be nothing more than fluffy, meaningless remarks and left wing talking points that mean absolutely nothing.

Here are some inane statements you will hear Obama say tonight (cue John Lennon’s “Imagine”):

“We’ve significantly cut the deficit in the last five years.”

The U.S. deficit (the difference between the money that the government takes in and the money that it spends) varies each year, but the federal debt continues to balloon at record rates — in 2013, it surpassed $17 trillion. Obama will not discuss the debt tonight.

“…but there’s still a lot of work to do. We can’t cut our way out of this hole.”

An excuse for free-spending bureaucrats to tax at a higher rate instead of enacting real spending cuts.

“It’s only right that we ask everyone to pay their fair share.”

An attempt to use emotion to justify higher taxes.

“The Affordable Care Act is working better than we expected despite a few bumps along the way.”

Obamacare, the largest government power-grab of our generation, has caused over 4 million Americans to lose their insurance plans. Only 2 million people have signed up for Obamacare on the federal exchange.

“Income in equality is a defining challenge of our time.”

When you hear this, hold on to your wallets — we all know what this means.

“We have to make sure that there are new ladders of opportunity into the middle class.”

This feel-good jargon means absolutely nothing.

“Long-term unemployed Americans are not lazy and it’s our job to protect them.”

An attempt to justify Obama’s welfare state. 20 percent of American households are on now food stamps and about 50 percent of the U.S. population relies on government subsidies.

“If Congress refuses to cooperate with me, I’m prepared to act on my own.”

Translation: I am prepared to overstep the Constitution and blame Congress for anything that does not go my way.

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