Morning Action: The Uninsured are Increasingly Critical of Obamacare

OBAMACARE.  A new poll finds uninsured Americans are increasingly critical of Obamacare:

Uninsured Americans — the people that the Affordable Care Act was designed to most aid — are increasingly critical of the law as its key provisions kick in, a poll released Thursday finds.

This month’s tracking poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 47 percent of the uninsured said they hold unfavorable views of the law while 24 percent said they liked it. These negative views have increased since December, when 43 percent of the uninsured panned the law and 36 percent liked it. (KHN is an editorially independent program of the Foundation.)

AMNESTY.  The Republicans’ principles for immigration reform have been revealed, and they include amnesty (sub. req’d):

Speaker John A. Boehner of Ohio released his long-awaited immigration overhaul principles Thursday afternoon, for the first time laying out a broad GOP-backed pathway to legalized status for undocumented immigrants.

Boehner and other top Republicans have been talking about it for months, but the document lays out a draft for how Republicans want to take on the contentious issue, which is splitting their party at their annual retreat here. The party will discuss and potentially amend the document, and it is possible that it will not be accepted at all.

The principles stress interior and border enforcement must be enacted before mechanisms to legalization can begin and notes that Republicans do not favor a “special pathway” to citizenship for anyone who illegally traversed the border into the United States. However, it does present options for those roughly 11 million immigrants living in the country.

ENERGY.  The results of yet another environmental impact study on the Keystone XL pipeline that may ultimately help win the project’s approval are expected Friday:

The results of an environmental impact study into the Keystone XL pipeline project will be announced Friday afternoon, two senior administration officials and another source familiar with the timing told CNN.

The sources were not authorized to speak on the record.

“The (study) is in the final stages of preparation and we anticipate a release of the document soon,” a State Department spokesperson told CNN. “As a reminder when it is released, (the study) is not a decision, but another step in the process prescribed by the Executive Order” from the President.

What environmentalists and industry observers alike will be looking for is whether the study determines the project would be “carbon neutral.” If it does, it’s widely expected that the pipeline will ultimately win approval.

IST.  House Republicans are working on a state exemption for the online sales tax (sub. req’d):

House Republicans are developing a new online sales tax vehicle that would cede to states key decisions such as a possible tax-collection exemption for small businesses.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah confirmed in an interview that he is working with Judiciary ChairmanRobert W. Goodlatte of Virginia on an alternative to the Senate-passed online sales tax bill (S 743) sponsored by Sen. Michael B. Enzi, R-Wyo.

Chaffetz said the Senate bill was “dead on arrival” in the House, but predicted there would be House action on an alternative later this year. “We do need to address it. It’s been punted for too long. It’s time to tackle that one,” said Chaffetz, a Judiciary member.

He said his draft bill would provide states with leeway to make their own decisions on how to enforce online sales taxes. “What the states are asking for is the ability to deal with this. We need to empower them to do it,” Chaffetz said.

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