US President Donald Trump speaks about the Senate health care bill during a lunch with members of the US military in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC. Photo: AFPAn angry President Donald Trump railed Tuesday against dissenters in his party who dashed his months-long effort to dismantle his predecessor’s landmark health care law, as moderates balked at the latest Republican plan to scrap Obamacare.With several efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) now squashed, the Senate’s top Republican said he would forge ahead with what could be a last-gasp vote—on a new plan to kill off most of the 2010 reforms of Trump’s predecessor without a replacement at the ready.Four Republicans had lined up against Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s earlier health overhaul, flatlining it in the chamber, where the party could afford only two defectors in order to get the measure passed.McConnell announced a fresh effort aimed at repealing Obamacare now and crafting a replacement later. But that too ran into opposition from at least three Republicans who refused to support repealing the law without a suitable fix at the ready.The Republican leader nonetheless prepared to force a vote to see where his members stood on the repeal-only measure.“That’s a vote I think we’re very likely to have in the very near future,” McConnell told reporters.No date was given, but number two Republican John Cornyn said he expected it this week.The dramatic implosion effectively means that Trump, who marks his first half-year in office Thursday, has no major legislative victory in hand, squandering months of political capital.Trump fired off a morning tweet storm complaining about how he was “let down” by Democrats “and a few Republicans” opposed to the repeal.He had campaigned relentlessly on a pledge to abolish most of the ACA, proclaiming at an October campaign rally that it would be “so easy” to immediately repeal and replace the law.But he has run into the uncompromising reality of American politics: even with a president’s party enjoying a majority in both chambers, crafting and passing landmark legislation can be perilous in the US Congress.The White House insisted that success remained within reach, with deputy spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders saying “we are not done with the health care battle.”But Trump said he was “disappointed,” and repeatedly offered that now it would be easier to just “let Obamacare fail.”He also stressed he wanted nothing to do with the blame for the collapse.“We’re not going to own it. I’m not going to own it. I can tell you the Republicans are not going to own it,” he said.“We’ll let Obamacare fail and then the Democrats are going to come to us” looking to work on a solution.‘Time to start over’McConnell’s new bid would repeal much of Obamacare outright, but with a two-year delay of implementation, in order to allow Congress time to craft a replacement.A straight repeal bill passed Congress in 2015. That was during Obama’s presidency, and Republicans knew they would pay no political price for their votes, as Obama vetoed the measure.It is no longer a dress rehearsal, and some Republicans are clearly concerned they would be on the hook for any ensuing disruption to the health care system.Two years ago, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office warned that simply repealing Obamacare would essentially kick 18 million people off health care in the first year compared to current law, a figure that would balloon to 32 million by 2026.That is far worse than the 22 million that the CBO forecast would lose coverage under the latest repeal-and-replace legislation.With a number of Senate Republican moderates voicing concern about how the latest bill could adversely impact millions of people insured through Medicaid, the health coverage program for the poor and the disabled, McConnell’s bid floundered.“I cannot vote to repeal Obamacare without a replacement plan that addresses my concerns and the needs of West Virginians,” Senator Shelley Moore Capito said in a statement.Her state has significant numbers of residents on Medicaid.Another Republican opposed to the new plan, Senator Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, acknowledged that McConnell had the nearly impossible task of coralling enough votes from his caucus’s rival conservative and moderate factions.“The majority leader is trying to keep all the frogs in the wheelbarrow, and it’s a tough job,” Murkowski said.While Democrats celebrated, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer extended an olive branch to his Republican rivals and encouraged them to work with Democrats to improve Obamacare.“It’s time to move on. It’s time to start over” on health care, he said.Meanwhile a bipartisan group of 11 governors urged the Senate to “immediately reject” the repeal-only effort and work with state executives on bettering the current system.“The best next step is for both parties to come together and do what we can all agree on: fix our unstable insurance markets,” said the governors, who included Ohio’s John Kasich, a 2016 Republican presidential hopeful, and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia.
Prime minister Sheikh Hasina is presiding over the cabinet meeting at the secretariat on Monday. Photo: PIDThe cabinet on Monday approved in principle the draft Broadcast Bill 2018 with a provision to form a seven-member Broadcast Commission to provide licences to broadcast media, including online ones and to bring those under discipline, reports UNB.The approval came at the weekly meeting of the cabinet held at the secretariat with prime minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.The cabinet also approved the draft of Mass Media Employees (Services Conditions) Bill 2018 in principle with a provision to constitute wage board for journalists and employees of all media houses, including electronic ones.As per the Broadcast Bill, a five-member search committee will place its report before the president to form the seven-member Broadcast Commission, said cabinet secretary Mohammad Shafiul Alam while briefing reporters after the meeting.He said the president will appoint members of the commission, including a chairman and with at least a female member.”The Broadcast Bill 2018 is a new one which was framed following consultations with all stakeholders. The Bill has been placed (in the cabinet) to bring the broadcast media, including online one, under discipline,” said the cabinet secretary.The Broadcast Commission will have the authority to provide licences to broadcast media and revoke those. But the commission will have to take prior permission from the government in case of providing any licence in this regard.As per the Bill, the commission will have to dispose of any complaint to be lodged against any media house within 30 days after receiving it.It will have the authority to suspend or revoke the licence of any broadcast media on seven grounds.About the Mass Media Employees (Services Conditions) Bill 2018, Shafiul Alam said the wage board will be applicable for journalists and employees of all the media outlets, including print and electronic, as per the Bill.According to the Bill, the working hours for media employees will be 36 hours in a week instead of 48 hours, while the casual leave will be 15 days instead of 10 days and the earned leave will be 100 days instead of 60 days annually, he said.Besides, the festival leave will be 10 days in a year, recreation leave will be one month after every three years, and the maternity leave will be six months in place of the existing eight weeks.If anyone or organisation violates the provisions of the Bill, s/he will be fined Tk 50,000-Tk 500,000 lakh, the cabinet secretary said.
Popular on Variety ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 Facebook’s recently-disclosed security incident that exposed the data of some 30 million members was committed by spammers, not nation-state actors, according to a new Wall Street Journal report. Facebook has yet to officially identify who’s behind the hack, with the company’s VP of product management Guy Rosen telling reporters last week that it was following requests from law enforcement.“We are cooperating with the FBI on this matter,” Rosen said during a conference call on the subject. “The FBI is actively investigating and have asked us not to discuss who may be behind this attack.”A Facebook spokesperson declined to comment further Thursday.The social media giant disclosed at the end of last month that it had become victim to a hack, and preemptively reset a total of 90 million accounts. Last week, the company followed up with further details, disclosing that hackers were able to steal personal information from 29 million accounts. Data harvested by the hackers included “username, gender, locale/language, relationship status, religion, hometown, self-reported current city, birthdate, device types used to access Facebook, education, work, the last 10 places they checked into or were tagged in, website, people or Pages they follow, and the 15 most recent searches,” according to a company blog post.The company said that it would notify account holders affected by the hack. Facebook users are also able to check whether they were victim of the intrusion by going to Facebook’s help pages.The Journal reported Thursday that the hack was committed by a group of Facebook and Instagram spammers who have been associated with a digital marketing company. It’s unclear how the spammers were looking to exploit the harvested data; Facebook spokespeople said during previous briefings about the incident that the hackers had not posted any content to the service during the intrusion.