tv News Nation MSNBC May 10, 2013 11:00am-12:01pm PDT
i'm in for tamron hall. the news nation is following news on how the obama administration handled the talking points in the aftermath of the attacks on the consulate in benghazi. congressional sources tell nbc news a new report by house republicans has found that 12 iterations of the talking points were made over one two-hour period. the changes were from minor word adjustments to major revisions.
kelly o'donnell joins us live from washington. >> reporter: this is a complicated story and one thing that i wanted to address. the sources reviewed these over a two-hour period. the actual writing of the talking points was more like a 24-hour period. and what happens is when there is a big issue for an administration, the presidents now or at other times, you have all these agencies that come together. and there had been a request to have public talking points. because so much of the information was classified. that's where the talking points came from to begin with. what we've been told is there were 12 versions ultimately. some of those versions were just changes to a word here or there. move a sentence here or there. nothing all that substantive. if you go from talking point from one to 12, you do see a very big difference. namely you see the original talking points which were put together by the intelligence community indicated that they had known that this was a terror attack in benghazi right from
the start. they had also talked about five prior attacks on foreign interests including the british in libya. talked about the fact there were responsibility demonstrations in cairo, not in libya, and gave a lot of detailed information. through the process of reviewing that, it was boiled down considerably and in the end, the final talking points did not include that explicit reference to the administration or the intelligence community, knowing it was a terror attack. what is so important about this? we're learning because of the e-mails that were made available from the white house to congressional sources, that there were a few people in the administration who weighed in and suggested that there be some changes to the talking points. that may be perfectly legitimate. some people see it with a political lens and suggest that it meant there was some tweaking of the talking points for political gain. that's really the heart of this debate. and one of the things we learn today is the final person in the chain of e-mail was the director
david petraeus who said they're not even really worth using because they had in my words been boiled down so much. what we do know is that a couple of state department officials had raised concerns about specific references to terror groups in the original talking points, concerned that the hill might use that to beat the state department and you could interpret that politically, perhaps, or you could say that it was a case of not wanting to get information ahead of what government officials felt comfortable saying publicly. this has been a hot issue. new information through the e-mail. it gets complicated but it gives us a window into what was happening in september. >> what does this say about secretary of state hillary clinton's involvement? >> no explicit reference to her. there is one intriguing part where a representative of the state department said the building leadership referring to the state department was still not pleased when some changes
were made, not enough in her estimation. we don't know that hillary clinton was at all directly involved. there seemed to be kind of a turning point on a saturday morning meeting. this would have been september 15th, i believe, where the deputies of these agencies, key officials were in the white house for a meeting. we don't have the specifics of notes on that. what we have been told is that from the cia, mike did handwritten notes changing the talking points with a group working on those. all of the implications are if the state department was wanting some changes, did that rise to hillary clinton's 11? that's one of the question that some in congress want to know and it is one of the political issues the white house has to deal with now. >> kelly o'donnell, live in washington. thank you for that. for more let's go to the white house and mick viqueira. we're awaiting a briefing by white house press secretary jay carney in about 30 minutes. president obama will deliver
remarks from the east room but that's on a different topic. do we expect to hear anything about this new information on benghazi this afternoon? >> reporter: well, i think we can assume that the hearing that jay carney is about to hold that has been delayed for a few minutes now will be dominated by questions of benghazi. part of the issue here and one of the things that reporters will want to know about, probably the first thing is repeatedly here. the white house has said jay carney and others have said the only thing that was changed by the white house in this series of communications over the course of events in benghazi and that fateful day, that sunday when susan rice, the u.n. ambassador went on all five networks sunday talk shows and represented what happened in benghazi as the outgrowth of a responsibility demonstration, a reaction to that provocative youtube video which had in fact spawned demonstrations earlier in the week in cairo. what happened was a result of that. jay carney had said the only thing that the white house has
changed were semantic words. he said repeatedly that the word embassy to describe it was changed to consulate. in fact it was not a consulate. that was the extent of the white house involvement in forming those talking points. it would appear from everything kelly has reported and what we've heard elsewhere that there was considerably more discussion about how to phrase that. whether the state department was going to be unduey taking the blame from the intelligence community for missing a lot of signals. talking about ansar al shari'a that was active around benghazi. these are the kinds of questions that we'll be hearing today, this friday. you're right. the president has an event later today. it is about health care implementation of obama care, a phrase even he uses now. we don't expect him to talk about benghazi but that is certainly the issue hanging over the white house this friday afternoon. >> mike viqueira live at the white house. for more on all this, let's bring in our political panel.
former state department p.j. crowley, usa today columnist raul reyes and senior political reporter for politico, lois romano. thank you for being here today. what's your take? >> we still don't know the facts. above everything else we still have an active fbi investigation that will tell us who actually did it and why they did it and under what circumstances. there is still a fast nation about talking points. my sense of having gone through the process at various times, it is more about protecting bureaucratic equities than any kind of political conspiracy. >> and raul the white house has said that they had minimal involvement in crafting the talking points. >> i don't think the revelations from these e-mails necessarily contradict what we already know
other than maybe it is fleshing it out. because general petraeus and jay carney have both said that it underwent various drafts through the cia. so i think this is, it is still, i feel that the focus is not on where it should be which is september 11, 2012. it was a tragedy. it was obviously a huge policy failure, a security failure and five people died. yet starting from the right wing. this is a right wing conspiracy in quotation marks that has gone main stream with this obsession with the memos from september 12th. so far as secretary kerry stated in his press conference a little earlier, we have yet to see any indication that there was any untoward motives on behalf of the cia or the white house. >> all of this began with wednesday's hearing by the house oversight committee.
chairman darrell issa gave us his take on all of this. what do you think that we're learning from this hearing that took place on wednesday with allegations from gregory hicks that he was demoted as a result of his objections that he raised? does it seem like there is evidence of wrongdoing or any cover-up emerging here? >> i think it is too early to tell. certainly the testimony from mr. hicks was very damaging to the senior levels. i agree with raul. this is really being treated as a political football instead of an effort to get to the bottom of what happened and how we can best improve our security overseas. i think the republicans are seeing an opportunity here to actually tarnish secretary clinton's legacy. and unfortunately, the series of events that are happening go to her, some of her weaknesses and liabilities. that she's had a rap for many
years being secretive, being concerned about how she is portrayed politically. when you have a state department employee saying why do we want to put this in there because it will make us look bad, it does raise questions. the state department employee did not say we shouldn't put this in there because it is a matter of national security. it was about optics and being beat up on. so i think they've given the republicans some ammunition. and i think that we're going to be satisfying a political spectacle for many weeks to come. i'm not going to be surprised to see hillary clinton called up there again and probably cheryl mills called up to testify. >> to follow up, 2016 is a very long time away. we don't even know if hillary clinton plans to run for president. but is this a political issue that can stick with her for years to come? >> i think in a broad sense it can. i know it several years away but in a broad sense the republicans can paint it to make it look like she was so overly political that she was doing all this to
protect herself, rather than trying to get to the bottom of what happened. and i think they're running on two tracks now, the critics. one is that the obama administration was involved in it because it was preelection and obama was running as a national security candidate. and also, you know, it has been hands off hillary for quite a while now. she left on a high note. she has had some illnesses and she's coming back on a very high note with women's groups. so i think they are looking at this as a way to stay on it and make it look as if she is very secretive. she is very ambitious. sort of the old pattern. >> and p.j., clinton has testified that she was not involved in the drafting of these talking points. and a lot of republicans are asking for the full e-mails to be released. is this an attempt to try to connect her to the drafting of these talking points. >> i'm shocked. there's politics going on here. of course this is all about 2016
and the secretary had a tremendous run as secretary of state. and i think lois is exactly right. a lot of the clinton stuff, if you will, had moved aside. now it is moving back into the center. i would say one thing of context in fairness, remember that benghazi dropped into the movie of the presidential campaign. when you're a career foreign service officer, you don't want to politicize your podium. you're trying to convey a mention to the american people without inserting yourself into the campaign. so i think that explains some of the conservative sensitive reaction of the state department. that they want to keep this issue. if mr. romney and mr. obama want to debate that on the campaign trail, fine. but not to bring the state department as an agency or an institution into the middle of the politics. >> and yesterday speaker boehner call for a release of the information from the state
department from the day after the attack. let's take a listen to what he had to say. >> understand the reap this is still underway is because the white house has done everything possible to block access to the information that would outline the truth. the question you have to ask is, why? >> are republicans gaining political momentum here? >> obviously this situation is still evolving. it is still fluid. we had a recent cnn poll that shows 56%, that's the majority, do not think the white house is deliberately engaged in any type of cover-up. what i think is going on is that this is a distraction to the white house. for instance today when the president wants to be out there pushing health care reform and talking about the affordable health care act. this will linger and go on and on. we're not sure of all the implications yet. the fact is back during the election, all the problems surrounding benghazi and the intelligence failures, they were obama's. as soon as the election
happened, now they're it on hillary. i believe the public can see through this and see that this is very politically motivated. and they're looking to damage what is most likely a very strong front runner in 2016. so far i'm not convinced it is gaining traction with the larger public. >> i would like to speak to you quickly about the specific objections the state department spokesperson raised. one was in naming a specific al qaeda group pending the investigation and the other was in referring to previous attacks that could be used to attack the state department. so the administration officials are saying these were just legitimate procedural concerns. she was just asking for higher review. is that the case or does she seem to have crossed a line? >> i don't know the background. i wasn't part of the conversation. i left the state department two years ago. let me say that as a form he state department spokesperson, you know, your task is to try to put your agency and your foreign policy in the best possible light. and it is up to journalists or
other countries or what have you to poke holes in that. so i think her job was to try to craft a sustainable narrative. and i think there was a hesitation about navigating into political space. i spent a number of years in the pentagon as well. when it come to campaigns, there is a very firm guidance. keep the national security agencies out of the politics, out of campaigns. and i think that was the motivation behind victoria's concern. >> we'll have to leave it there. thank you all for being here this afternoon. we're also following new developments in the cleveland kidnapping case. the prosecutor said he may seek the death penalty against ariel castro. will the state be able to prove he got his alleged victims pregnant and then force them to suffer miscarriages? plus, reminiscent of the movie oceans 11. instead of targeting casinos, they are accused of hacking into
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moments ago cleveland kidnapping victim michelle knight was released from the hospital. and today dna test results were released from ariel castro. investigators confirmed castro is the father of the 6-year-old girl born in captivity by amanda berry. meanwhile 52-year-old castro is jailed in isolation and on suicide watch. official are preparing the case for a grand jury with the more aggressive prosecution, possibly including the death penalty. >> based on the facts, i fully intend to seek charges for each and every act of sexual violence, rape, each act of
kidnapping, every felonious assault, all his attempted murders and each act of aggravated murder he committed by terminating pregnancy that's the offender perpetuated against the hostages during this decade-long ordeal. >> also today, investigators say they finished searching castro's home. crews did not find any human remains but left with hundreds of items. craig melvin is live outside the home in cleveland. craig, do we know anything about what investigators left with or what they're looking for? >> reporter: no, at this point we do not know. i do want to call your attention to what's going on behind me at the house. you mentioned investigators have left the house. those investigators have been replaced by these workers. they've been removing debris from the yard of the home and we've also seen plywood and concrete heading in as well. it appears as if they're going to start to erect that fence that they promised they would be
putting on the 10 to 12-foot fence that will go around the castro home. it looks like they'll start on that. you mentioned michelle knight. the first of the three women who was taken captive, released from the hospital a short time ago, we're told, we do not have a great deal of information right now about her condition. other than to say she is in good condition. we do have a statement from the hospital. the statement is from michelle knight through the hospital. that statement reads in part, michelle knight is in good spirits and would like the community to know that she is extremely grateful for the outpouring of flowers and gifts. she asks that everyone please continue to respect her privacy at this time. so again michelle knight out of the hospital. the other big news you alluded to, the dna and the paternity testing. found out a few hours ago that ariel castro, according to police, is the father of that
6-year-old girl who was born in the house behind me. the dna testing is also important because they took castro's dna and they put it into a database in ohio and they check it against other missing persons. at this point, he does not appear to be connected to any of the other missing people in ohio. they're looking at the national database now so it could be some time before we find out whether he could be connected to any other cases around the country. that's the very latest from achieve. i'll send it back to you. >> craig melvin with the latest on the investigation. for the latest on the legal case, let me bring in defense attorney and for thatter prosecutor, karen, thank you for being here. one of these victims michelle knight has claimed that ariel castro starved her while she was pregnant and repeatedly punched her in the stomach to force miscarriages. the allegations are sickening. emotions aside, how tough is it to make the case for the death penalty? >> i think not that hard. if this case does go to a jury, i think they would probably
convict them of almost anything because of the horror involved here. it may be difficult with another person. however in this case when you have these gory details, obviously the standard is did he murder the child. fetal homicide is, did he intend to kill the child. and what trimester you're in makes a big difference. if it is a sustainable life in the third trimester, obviously that's considered a human being. based on roe versus wade back in 1973. is it difficult, any case without a body is difficult. he is the only person who had access. so i don't think under these facts and circumstances it would be hard for any prosecutor to prosecute a monster like this. >> in terms of the defense, sources say that a suicide note was found in castro's home. in that note he blames the girl for their own abductions. he said that he was molested as a child and in interrogations, he said he's addicted to sex and he can't control his impulses. does any of this give us an
insight into what his defense might be? >> this is a common defense. it wasn't my fault, very decepti deceptive. you'll hear from the three victims. he told us and we felt sorry for him. stock holm syndrome, helsinki syndrome. all the victims have these elements. obviously he has to have some sort of a defense. he can't just sit there and say nothing so obviously there are reasons but there are no excuses. you have to have some type of defense. >> we'll be following this closely. still ahead on "news nation" -- prince harry honors america's fallen soldiers with a visit to arlington national cemetery. we'll tell you what else he has planned during his week-long visit to the united states. >> plus, russia speaking out
after secretary of state john kerry warned the country not to sell missiles to syria. meantime the turkish prime minister says syrian government has used chemical weapons on its own people. we'll talk to michael crowley. [ mrs. hutchison ] friday night has always been all fun and games here at the hutchison household. but one dark stormy evening... there were two things i could tell: she needed a good meal and a good family. so we gave her what our other cats love, purina cat chow complete. it's the best because it has something for all of our cats! and after a couple of weeks she was healthy, happy, and definitely part of the family. we're so lucky that lucy picked us. [ female announcer ] purina cat chow complete. always there for you.
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russia's foreign minister denied reports that moscow has new plans to sell a sophisticated air defense system to syria. however he left open the possibility that such a system could be sent to syria under an existing contract. it come as president putin met with british prime minister david cameron and about two leaders agreed to work toward a transitional government in syria. president putin met with secretary of state kerry on tuesday. after that meeting, secretary kerry announced the u.s. and russia would work to bring the assad regime and the rebels to
the bargaining tables in the next month. joining me for this, michael crowley. thank you for being here. >> thank you. >> russia is one of syria's closest allies. is russia playing both sides? >> well, yes, up to a point. i don't know how much they're telling us that is what we want to hear. i think they're willing to try to oversee a process where there are talks about whether there could be a political settlement. i don't think that russia is saying that assad has to go or that any of the outcomes that we specifically want are the ones they want. they're willing to mediate and be there to get people talking. but i think it is clear that the core point here is that russia is still basically in the assad jeep camp. they are still considering selling these missiles which is very much against what the united states wants. and have yet to see a clear change in position that
represents a diplomatic breakthrough on the part of russia. >> what would it take for that xl diplomatic breakthrough? we've seen the use of chemical weapons. what would it take for russia to change their position? >> it is not clear to me. to some degree it could be facts on the ground. so i think russia may be calculating that assad can fight this out. he is getting supplies from iran. he is getting some help from russia. again, i think they're perfectly happy with having him in there and they're feeling maybe he can win this. so for things to change it may have to be that the rebels get stronger, potentially american aid and american intervention. i don't see that happening any time soon. i think that russia doesn't mind the status quo. doesn't mind assad being in power. so i think the facts on the ground may have to change first. >> in an exclusive interview with anne curry, turkey says it
has crossed president obama's red line and used chemical weapons. let's take a listen. >> it is clear that the regime has used chemical weapons. the missiles, they use about 200 missiles, according to our intelligence of the and it can be even more but not less. >> what evidence do you have? >> we have these missile that's are pictures. and there are intelligence reports and there are patients who are brought to our hospitals who are wounded by these. >> the prime minister said he will discuss all of that when he meets with president obama next week. what do you make of these claims? >> i think it puts more pressure on the obama administration. but the way obama is proceeding right now and playing this is that they're going to have the united nations figure out what happened. it will be an international consensus. obama is very sensitive that there was a bad call on wmd when
it came to the iraq war. if they are, and there are some conflicting claims about how this might have happened. what might have happened. so i think obama wants it to go through the u.n. and go there you good the u.n. means russia will have a big say on it. if there is any final decree or action, russia will have a veto in the security council. it comes back to russia. the last thing i would say, a big potential game changer could be if you saw al qaeda affiliated rebels get ahold of those chemical weapons, stockpiles. it is a real threat that people are not talking that much about. i wrote about it. some of these rebel fighters with al qaeda ties have gotten quite close to syrian chemical weapons facilities. i think that would change the entire nature of the story. >> all right. "time" magazine's michael crowley. >> thank you. coming up, awaiting remarks from president obama on health care. he is expected to speak at any minute from the white house. we'll bring you those remarks live. >> and we continue to follow the
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that's the power of the home depot. show mom why you're her favorite, with a 12" infinity color bowl, a special buy at just $14.98. as we saw earlier, republicans have been turning up the heat on the administration's handling of the benghazi attacks. while the senate bipartisan gang of 8 put up a uniform front. we begin with the political comeback few would have predicted weeks ago. mark sanford's win in the south carolina congressional election. >> it is my pledge to everyone of you here from this day going forward that i am going to be, trying to be the best congressman that i could have ever been. >> wow, we gave it a heck of a fight, didn't we? >> our analysis shows that taxpayers including immigrants who have come here lawfully will be saddled with $6.3 trillion in
costs over the next 50 years. >> don't make an effort to kill a bill that is the best hope for immigration reform i believe that we've had in this country. >> no one can dispute that this bill is legalization first, enforcement later. >> about 3:00 a.m., i received a call from the prime minister of libya. i think it was the saddest phone call i've ever had in my life. he told me that ambassador stevens had passed away. >> i find it stunning that four and a half months after the attack, secretary clinton still has the gall to say, it wasn't us. >> joining me live, senior political editor mark murray. good afternoon. thank you for being here. >> so hillary clinton's state
department is coming under fire concerning benghazi. conservative groups are releasing ads targeting clinton. how much of this is about tarnishing a potential candidate as early as possible? >> a lot of this is politics. how the republican focus has turned a lot from president obama which we've seen over the past four and a half years, to the former secretary of state hillary clinton. and of course, that republican focus was so much a part of the republican party's identity from 1992. pretty much through 2008. of course, the last four and a half, five years have been focused on president obama. that's a very big development. if you take a step back, there are two legitimate points of inquiry. one, the security that was involved at this outpost consulate in benghazi. second the poicht inquiry has to do with all these e-mails coming about where what was changed, what wasn't in the points. those are two legitimate parts in this mostly political exercise.
you say that the white house is facing a different kind of policy fight in regard to health care than say, immigration or gun reform. why is that? >> this is defending one of his, perhaps, indeed his biggest domestic legacy in achievement. that is health care law. this will be the third time in the last couple of weeks that president obama has addressed the health care law. first he spoke at a planned parenthood gala urging women to be informed and know what is in the law. he also referred to it last week in his news conference that he had in washington, d.c. at the white house. so this will be his third time in addressing it. this is all about trying to alleviate a lot of concerns that this will be a very messy implementation. >> all right. mark murray, live in washington. thank you. the immigration bill survived its first eight hours of debate in the senate judiciary committee yesterday. >> senators fought off republican challengers to the proposed bill in the first full
day of mark-ups. members of the gang of 8 were able to be back efforts by conservatives to make substantial changes to the legislation. the committee is expected to approve the measure within two weeks and clear the way for an epic showdown on the senate floor in june. joining me now for more is arizona congressman raul. thank you for being here. >> it's a pleasure to be with you again. >> now yesterday's senate panel was pretty contentious and i want to play something for that you senator cruz said about the prospects of the current bill with provisions for a path to citizenship were to reach the house floor. let's take a listen. >> in my view if those provisions are insisted upon and the majority has the votes to insist on those provisions, it is likely to scuttle this bill and cause it to be voted down in the house of representatives. >> congressman, what's your reaction to that? >> well, first of all, senator cruz has never supported a pathway to citizenship. so it is kind of a convenient excuse for him.
second, we have a strong faction in the republican party of the caucus that is going to be opposed to immigration reform in general. and to the pathway. but getting through the hurdle of the senate, builds momentum. gives us an opportunity on the house floor and gives the american people an tunnel to weigh in on the house of representatives on this issue. so i think it is critical that we get as clean of a bill, as just of a bill, a corrected bill as we can out of the senate. so that our fight in the house floor is not dictated by the attitude that senator cruz just displayed which is dead on arrival. i don't think so. >> and this week the conservative heritage foundation put out a report estimating that immigration reform will cost taxpayers $6.3 trillion. what do you say to those who worry about the economic impact of bringing million of people in from the shadows? >> quite frankly, i think that
study is bogus. it is a political statement. all other economists, all other studies have indicated that it is a net plus for the economy in terms of wages, revenue, purchasing power, and tax revenue for the country. and you know, to include social security deductions as a cost when in fact, undocumented people can never access social security by law. it is just one point in that study that i think to me makes it more of a political statement than an economic statement or a truly scientific analysis. >> we'll have to leave it right there. arizona congressman, thank you for being here this afternoon. >> thank you. my pleasure. still ahead, a high end cyber heist. these drain atms of tens of millions of dollars in a matter of hours. we'll tell you just how they pulled it off. but first, there is a lot going on today. and here are some things we thought you should know.
britain's prince harry just wrapped up a visit to walter reed medical center. harry served twice in afghanistan met veterans being treated for war injuries. he is now headed to colorado where he will cheer on wounded servicemen and women in the warrior games. and tonight senator rand paul will speak at the iowa republican's party fund-raiser. he will introduce himself to local leaders and lay the groundwork for a possible presidential run. he placed third during the 2012 iowa caucus. those are just the things we thought you should know. gy mudd. you know who you are. you can part a crowd, without saying a word... if you have yet to master the quiet sneeze... you stash tissues like a squirrel stashes nuts... well muddlers, muddle no more. try zyrtec®. it gives you powerful allergy relief. and zyrtec® is different than claritin® because zyrtec® starts working at hour one on the first day you take it. claritin® doesn't start working until hour three. zyrtec®. love the air.
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1234679 federal officials say they've buffed a record setting bank robbery scheme. investigators call it one of the most brazen cyber crime ever. but this one did not involve the getaway car or any weapons. instead the criminals used digital technology. tom costello reports. >> reporter: investigators say
it was a highly sophisticated global bank heist that used computers and the internet in terms of guns and masks. in the end the u.s. attorney says a global criminal conspiracy got away with $45 million in a coordinated attack on atms worldwide. >> moving literally at the speed of the internet. the organization made its way from the computer systems of international corporations to the streets of new york, as well as major cities around the world. >> how did they do it? investigators believed the suspects hacked into global financial institutions, then stole prepaid debit card numbers and eliminated the maximum withdrawal limits. that stolen data was then transmitted around the world where an army of suspects and more than two dozen countries encoded the data on to magnetic strips. than began withdrawing money from atms. >> they become a virtual criminal flash mob. going from machine to machine, drawing as much money as they
can before these accounts are shut down. >> on december 21st, they hit 4,500 atms, stealing $5 million. then on february neenlt, they struck again. 36,000 transactions, $40 million stolen. in new york city alone, a team of eight made 2,900 withdrawals stealing $2.4 million. investigators say this suspect with drew $30,000, all over new york city in just six hours. >> our financial systems are now so interconnected that you can commit a crime halfway around the world and get away with the money before anyone could even dial 911. >> the man investigators believe was the new york ring leader was murdered in the dominican republic while seven u.s. suspects have been arrested, many more are thought to be on the loose worldwide. tom costello, nbc news, washington. >> we're going live now to a white house event in progress on president obama's health care legislation. he is tying it to mother's day. we'll hear from the president on that.
>> thank you. thank you so much, everybody. welcome to the white house. i want to thank carol for the wonderful introduction. and let me just start off with a public service announcement to dads, partners, kids of america. sunday is mother's day. you should not forget. you can't go wrong with flowers, a home made card, giving mom some relief, some quiet time. that is appreciated. so it's a day when we put moms first and i still remember one time, i said to michelle, this was back when we had just gotten married, i think malia had just been born and we were fussing around mother's day. how come we do so much stuff on
mother's day? she said because every other day is man's day. so this is like one day. there is as usual profound insight into michelle's remarks. because moms so often put themselves last. so often they put everything else before themselves. and that's particularly true when it comes to things like health care. moms take care of us. yeah, see? case in point. sick kids, aging parents, grumpy husbands, and i know there are a lot of mom out there who often go without the care that they need or the check-ups they know they should get. because they're worrying about that co-pay that has to go to gas or groceries or the new soccer uniform instead. or worse, they know the unfairness of being charged more
for the health care just because they're a woman or the stress of trying to manage a family budget when health care costs are impinging on it or trying to insure a sick child only to be told no over and over again. so we decided that needed to change. in a country as wealthy as this one, there was no reason why a family's security should be determined by the chance of an illness or an accident. we decided to do something about it. thanks to the women in this room and people all across the country. we worked really hard and it has been more than three years since congress passed the affordable care act and i signed it into law.
it's been nearly a year since the supreme court upheld the law under the constitution. and by the way, six months ago the american people went to the polls and decided to keep going in this direction. so the law is here to stay. and those of us who believe that every american deserves access to quality affordable health care have an obligation to now make sure that full implementation moves forward the way it needs to. basically, there are two main things that the american people need to know about this law and what it means. first, if you're one of the nearly 85% of americans who already have health insurance, whether through your employer or medicare or medicaid, you don't
have to do a thing. this law already provides you with a wide array of new benefits, tough new consumer protections, stronger cost control measures, that existed before the law passed. those things are already in place. you're benefiting from it. you just may not know it. making sure that insurers can't take advantage of you. making sure that your child can stay on your health insurance until they're 27 years old. so a lot of those provisions are already in place, providing help and assistance to people all across the country. now, second, if you're one of the tens of millions who don't have health insurance, beginning this fall, you'll finally be able to compare and buy quality affordable private plans that work for you.
that's what you need to know. if you have health insurance, this is just enhanced it. if you don't, you'll be able to get it. for three years now, this law has provided real and tangible benefits to millions of americans. women in particular now have more control over their own care than ever before. and i'm pleased to be joined today by many women who wrote in to tell us what the affordable care act means to them. carol told us. my oldest child is 22. a recent college grad. a traumatic brain injury survivor with a rare genetic lung disease. without the affordable care act, he would have been removed from our family health insurance policy this year. and his health is excellent but the cost of maintenance is
overwhelming. given his history, he would be virtually uninsurable under the old rules. instead of contemplating law school, you a of his resources would have been channeled into somewhere finding health insurance. that's what carol wrote. so carol and her son justin are why the affordable care act lets young people stay on their parents' plan until they turn 26. and today as she put it, now justin's future is governed by what he wants to achieve. not what health insurance mandates. by the way, justice is here. a fine jung man. sunday is mother's day. >> yeah. >> want to make sure you remember that. alicia is the mother of amy who is a beautiful sweet 3io girl who also happens to have leukemia. imagine what that is like for a
parent. you're just figuring out how to take care of a baby, you have to figure out how to pay for expensive treatment that could save your baby's life. any parent knows that there is nothing we won't do to take care of our kids. and it is nice to have somebody get your back. that's why the affordable care act made it illegal for bad actors to discriminate against her and today she is just great. she was here a second ago. where is she? there she is. hey, sweetie! so alicia wrote in and said the health care law is about people like me. it is alicia care. and because of alicia care, the affordable care act, insurance company can no longer impose lifetime limits on the amount of care you receive.
or drop your coverage if you get sick. or discriminate against children with preexisting conditions. and women now have access to free preventive care like check-ups and mammograms and cancer screenings so you can catch preventable illness on the front end. that provision has already helped more than 70 million americans with private insurance. that's already happening. a lot of people don't know it. but you've got those protections. because the affordable care act, young adults under the age of 26 are able to stay on their parents' health insurance plan. that is already helping more than 6 million young adults. because the affordable care act, seniors on medicare receive free preventive care with no co-pay and get a discounts on prescription drugs that has already saved over 6 million seniors more than $700 each. that has been already happening. seniors may not know that
they've been getting $600 discounts. but it is this. because the affordable care act insurers now have to justify double digit rate increases publicly for everybody to see. and most states have new authority thanks to incentives under this law to reject unjust at this identifiable rate increases. insurers are not requi, they ar required to spend it on you. not on overhead. if they fail to meet that target they have to reimburse you. either with a rebate or lower premiums. millions of americans discovered this last year. they opened up an envelope from their insurance company that wasn't a bill. it was a check. that's already happened. a lot of people don't know it. but that's what the affordable
care act is all about. beginning this week as part of the price transparency tools, we made public the different hospitals charm you for most common services so you can see if you're getting what you paid for. and soon bad actors in the insurance industry will never again be abe to discriminate against you just because you've gotten sick in the past. they can't discriminate against you because you have a preexisting condition. and by the way, they can't charge you more just for being a woman. pregnancy will no longer be considered a preexisting condition. and finally, beginning this
fall, if you're one of the millions of americans who don't have health insurance, you'll finally have the chance to buy quality affordable care, just like everybody else. so here's how this is going to work. we're setting up a new online marketplace where beginning october 1st, you can go online, or talk to organizations in every state that will have this set up, and you can comparison shop on an array of private insurance plans. you can look at them side by side like you would go online and compare cars. and because you'll now be part of a new pool of million of other americans, part of this exchange, insurance companies will want to compete for your business the same way they compete for the business of a big company with a lot of employees. so once these market places are up and