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tv   News  Al Jazeera  October 21, 2013 12:00pm-12:31pm EDT

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it's a right for all to enjoy. that's what the affordable care act is all about. that's its promise. i intend to deliver on that promise. thank you very much, everybody. god bless you. >> it is now 12:00. you have been listening to the president of the united states address the changes to the affordable healthcare act which is known to many as obamacare and also known as the aca saying the president is frustrated with the act and how it has been rolling out as well. he plans on fixing it. it's not often that you hear the president quote someone about something he has worked to create that it stank. the president said anything going wrong with the site will be fixed.
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a sense at the moment proof that things are going better than they used to, which is we tried while the president was speaking to log onto the affordable care act at . we managed to be successful on all four attempts. do we have that screen shot? os 9, there it is. we logged in four times and this is what we found. we got past the home page which is what seem to be the major complication throughout the day. it took it to the state that we logged in on and we were able to complete what we needed to complete, which is what some would say is progress. mike viqueira joins us now from washington. mike, the president seemed to have a lot of numbers at his disposal as well. people who had been waiting for quite some i assume. >> reporter: i was struck by the time that the president donned this role of salesman. iwhen talking about the website,
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del, the president said we did not wage this long and contentious battle just around a website, then in the next breath you'll hear administration officials tout the number of interest, the 20 million who have tried to log onto the website, some successful, some not successful, and get information about buying health insurance on these exchanges that the president is talking about. you know, it was amazing to hear the president really pushing this in a way playing defense after the reports of all these problems glitches and beyond glitches now by the president's own admission. he summed it quite succinctly. product good, price is good, it's a good deal, and thin using some of the imagery that we heard before, a tech surge he's institute ing, and the best and the brightest. the president talking once again about the hardible
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care act, staying on your parents' policy until injure 26, no pre-existing condition bans, preventive care should be freed, and no lifetime limits. we've heard this before. the president doing it again three weeks after the exchanges went into affect promising that these website problems are going to be recognizefied. a very comprehensive statement by the president, and no doubt now that the white house and top democrats allies of the white house feeling as though they've got to change the narrative here of what they were saying before about overwhelming demand being solely responsible for the problems, these quite significant problems. 500,000 people have applied but they still will not say how many people--they don't give a raw, concrete number, how many people have gotten insurance through these website. >> if you have tried, and if you have failed time and time again we will reach out to you.
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were you surprised when it seemed to be, i guess, an admission that the administration is keeping that n for the attempts and now they'll reach out to those people who tried to log on. >> reporter: the president said himself, there is no sugarcoating this, people have gotten stuck and you can do this the whole fashioned way getting on the 1-800-which he repeated al la infomercial. i don't think anybody anticipated the problems they've had here. computer experts say it's not simply a question of overwhelming demand but the so-called computer code has been written in a way to make this non-functional. the presidents said they have
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the best and the brightest writing this around the clock promising results, and pointing out the fact that everybody has until march of next year to sign up to the online exchanges, and so if you haven't done it yet stick with it is the president's message. also lashing out at republicans, who of course probably squandered a wonderful political opportunity f you want to look at it this way, by diverting the nation to their failed policy o, and now you see republicans in earnest turning their attention to this. this would probably have a lot of to do with what would propel the president to dod this press conference in the rose garden. >> we have the story coming out of nevada. a 12-year-old has been shot at a shooting at a middle school there. the gunman now is in under arrest, go no word yet on the
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condition of the spoil. they believe the suspect has been, in their words, neutralized. we're waiting for more information for a from the news hour, the suspect has been neutralized, we are expecting a news conference within the hour from nevada, and we will be following that story. we want to turn back to the president's news conference a short time ago. joining me now the assistant professor of health policy and management at columbia university. you were watching, and i noticed you were nodding as the president read the e-mail who said that the website stinks. >> let's focus on the bigger picture, that is people will get coverage. this website, we haven't gotten to the bottom of this, we don't
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have the full information, but let's look at the full picture and not get distracted by this. as the president said, there is still time. >> you studied this. we have a law. we have a piece of legislation that is being demonized on one side, the worst thing that ever hit government yet the president on the other side said there are 30 million americans who need health insurance. how bad is america's healthcare industry. >> it's it very bad shape. if you can't cover people in this nation it needs to be fixed. that was the intent of the legislation. >> what "y" iwhy is it broken? what is wrong with the system? what do you see that is wrong and what is right? >> it goes back decades when we, unlike other countries, did not
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make those crucial decisions early on to develop national health insurance. we have developed a patchwork and some implementation problems that you are seeing are a result of that implementation patchwork. you've got different programs trying to work together. state regulations, federal regulations, state programs, federal programs, and that's just a massive transfer imagination. >> so stick with it. >> absolutely. >> from columbia university, miriam, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> we turn now from that situation to another contentious issue, the fight over the strictest abortion laws in the nation in texas. it has moved now to a courtroom there. abortion providers convince a federal judge in austin to keep the law from taking affect next week. hidheidiheidi zhou castro, do tk they can stop the law from being put into affect?
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>> reporter: well, del, they have a varied timeline to work with. as you mentioned these restrictions will begin to be enforced next week, and planned parenthood is asking for an injunction while they build their case that will lead eventually to a trial. now in other states that have passed similar restrictions and have faced lawsuits abortion providers have been successful in holding off these restrictions. in the past the courts have sided with the state on previous abortion cases. planned parenthood is saying as of next week if these restrictions are put into place a third of the state's 36 licensed abortion clinics will have to stop providing abortion services. they say this basically blacks out the western half of the state except for the city of el paso for clinics for women who want access to abortion. they found 22,000 women in texas
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will likely be denied access to abortion next year, and planned parenthood said it's worried that these women will instead resort to illegal abortions, perhaps across the border in mexico, or women who can get on waitlists for providers who remain, those abortions will be pushed back later in term, which is ironically is worse for the mother and less likely to result in a viable fetus. the state is arguing that these restrictions are safer for mothers, and it protects pre-born life. we spoke with a texas state representative who voted for that bill and is it supportive of it. >> it protects the baby for five months, that's a long time, and protects mothers in those earlier months b months by allom
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access to an emergency room. >> plannenow planned parenthoods happy to comply with that, but they're organizing with the position that any abortion doctor has to have admitting privileges to a hospital 30 miles within a clinic. that would force the closure of a third abortion clinics here, del. >> heidi zhou castro, thank you very much. secretary of state john kerry is in france. he is there for talks on advancing the middle east peace process, but those meetings are being overshadowed by a new diplomatictive. france is upset about new revelations of the national security agency and it's surveillance operations. in it case it seems that they are surveilling the french.
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phil ittner joins us from london, what can you tell us. >> reporter: the same day that secretary of state john kerry arrived in france, an article coauthored by the same man who broke the nsa eavesdropping story, that article published in the french daily "le monde" basically e posing several nsa operations that concerned french population not least of which the claim that some 70 million phone calls or phone records from monitored by the nsa in just one month. that's 70 million in just one month. now the french have responded to this quite angrily. they have summoned the u.s. ambassador to the foreign ministry to explain just exactly what it is that the nsa has been up to. >> phil, is this real anger or diplomatic anger, and do we expect any fallout from these
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allegations. it's safe to say that every nation spies on every nation in the world. >> reporter: yes, that has happened even among friends, there are spice. we'll have to wait to see what the government of france will do, but certainly it's the opinion on the street is genuine anger. there is concern all throughout europe amongst the european citizens that the nsa is spying on joe average over here. that's very serious cause for concern amongst the population in europe. and obviously the population, the politicians are respond to go that concern. we've seen in a number of different countries calls for a change in the way "the cloud" is monitored, and information gathered is much more controlled, and that people's
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private n and their private phone records or data or e-mails or what have you is protected at a higher degree. >> phil ittner joining us live from london. thank you. former leader mubarak in trial today. the 85-year-old was convicted on charges last year and sentenced to life in prison. but mubarak appealed that decision and is awaiting a new trial. the italian government promised a state funeral for six, but with 200 of those victims already buried the government decided on a memorial
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instead. it will take place on an island near sicily several miles from the island of lampedusa where immigrants were traveling to. and they'll hold a memorial for the victims. smack overwhelms a city in china and officials in australia declare a state of emergency if it's most populated state as crews battle wildfires. it could change costs, coverage, and pretty much all of healthcare in america. my show sorts this all out. in fact, my staff has read the entire thing. which is probably more than what most members of congress can claim. we'll separate politics from policy, and just prescribe the facts.
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on august 20th,
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uncovers unheard, fascinating news stories? >> they share it on the stream. >> social media isn't an after-thought, it drives discussion across america. >> al jazeera america's social media community, on tv and online. >> this is your outlet for those conversations. >> post, upload and interact. >> every night share undiscovered stories. >> a major victory for same-sex couples in new jersey. governor chris christie has told the state to drop its appeal for the ruling allowing gay
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marriage. >> i declare joseph and orville to be lawful spouses in the statstate of new jersey. >> senator elect corey booker did the honors just after midnight. the first same-sex couple to tie the knot at newark city hall. we have more. >> as the couples gather at city hall just after midnight new jersey became the 14th state to allow same sex unions. >> the state of new jersey becomes far greater by recognizing the equality of god's children. >> reporter: mayor and senator elect corey booker vowed never to marry anyone unless he could marry everyone in it this state as the first of nine ceremonies began there was a handful of
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protesters outside and one who briefly tried to disrupt the first union. >> forever hold your peace. >> this is not lawful in the eyes of god. >> well, sir, well sir, would you please remove that person. >> reporter: many of the couples here will tell you they're used to the protests and the fight for equality and they understand it even on this historic day. it's not over. >> the trouble continues. we are married. we're happy to be so, but that's not legal in all states in the united states, and there are a lot of people who still even in the states where it's legal don't believe that it's correct or proper. >> but that battle will have to come later. because in the early morning hours here the ceremonies gave way to celebration. >> butterflies. a lot of butterflies. just happy to see all of our
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friends and family. >> reporter: a happiness that many say they fought for for decades. >> that was jay gray reporting. so where does the country stand when it comes to the issue of same-sex marriage? a recent gallup poll found that 52% of americans back the issue of a gay marriage but 43 oppose it. gay marriage and civil unions are been the in several other states and there are several court cases involving civil unions including cases arkansas, hawai'i, michigan, north dakota, virginia, and until the governor said to drop the appeal, new jersey. one of china's biggest cities has been shut down because of overwhelming smog. students are being kept home from school and businesses there have been shuttered. that city is home to 11 million people that's like the population of new york city and
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chicago combined. all of this coming after the world's health organization declared air pollution to be a major cause of cancer. firefighters in the australian state of new south wales has declared a state of emergency. they're facing some of the worst brushfire there in decades. thousands have been told to flee and 200 homes have been destroyed. we have more now from lithgow. >> virtually all you can see is smoke and down in the valley, fire. the concern is that if fire joins with another one, further towards sydney, and that the two combine to form what is described by some as a mega fire, one with 300 kilometer fire front. as temperatures pick up and the winds pick up and change direction it might bring the fire in the direction of sydne sydney's suburb. that would be the worst-case scenario but possible.
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already emergency powers are giving right to access people's home but demolish them if they get in the way of fighting the fire. we'll go out to the firefighting to see the work close up, and the firefighters who are working desperately to keep these fires under control. >> meteorologist: i'm meteorologist dave warren. there are a lot of volunteers working to fight the fighters in australia. not all the best weather conditions and a number of fires out of control. these main scenes that you see coming in, the volunteer work coming in to fight all these fires. not much happening, maybe a few sprinkles trying to comb down through the clouds dry weather and windy conditions throughout much of australia including new south wales where the fires are. across the country, the
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temperatures are cold. very cold air is coming in from canada and moving south. chicago at 45 degrees. first time the temperatures drops to the freezing mark at one meter off the ground, freeze watches and warnings are issued. certainly a freeze watch around chicago and the temperatures are expected to drop down to the freezing mark and below to wisconsin and frost advisories. the temperatures do not have to get to 32 but you can still get frost forming on surfaces. a number of cold temperatures coming in with 28 in minneapolis. chicago, 32. minneapolis, 32. and frost and freezing temperatures, these frost warnings are issued once and they could be tomorrow morning. this is warm air coming up in the storm in the midwest bringing cold air in the dakotas. there will be rain in the great lakes, some of it heavy, and
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then a coastal storm develops and brings rain to new york wednesday and thursday. look at the temperature going from 68 down to 57. so much cooler air comes in by the end of the week after rain. and that rain will be from dc all the way up through new york and noen. >> dave warren. thank you very much. still ahead, a check of our top stories, and then there is this. >> it's humongous, and it's colorful and cool. >> just big. meet the man behind these giant halloween displays and learn the secret to his spooky sculpting. uncovers unheard, fascinating news stories? it drives discussion across america. >> share your story on tv and online.
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>> welcome back to al jazeera america. here is a look at your top stories. president obama speaking just a few minutes ago touting his affordable care act. the president saying the product is good regardless of the number of issues reported with just trying to sign up with the healthcare exchange weapon. updating a developing story. two students were wounded at a shooting at a middle school in
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nevada. we're waiting for a news conference to get more details from sparks, never, police department. new jersey governor chris christie challenging guy marriage, but today he withdrew his legal opposition to those ceremonies. they started last night at midnight. well, pumpkin carve something a time-honored tradition this time of year. but there is a man from illinois who turns pumpkins into a halloween magic. we watched as he turned a gourd into gold. >> i'm steve, and i'm a pumpkin carver. i've been carving pumpkins for 24 years. i enjoy it. the tools i use are chisels, a
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potato peeler, and a couple of scrapers. >> so far it looks like a big scary face. >> it does. >> i don't draw on the pumpkin. i just--i'll wing it. the time it takes to carve these pumpkins i do them in three to four hours. i start with the eyes first, and then the nose and then the mouth is the last thing that i'll carve. >> it is amazing. >> now i'm going to make his top lip into his bottom lip by taking the potato peeler right here, and i'll scrape until it goes around. >> do you supply the pumpkins? >> i bring them in. >> how do you get them here? >> i have a big machine that comes in and scoops it off the truck. >> it's humongous, and its
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colorful and cool. >> i like the way the children react. they never get to see something this big before. the place where we get these big pumpkins are up in wisconsin the eau claire area. i have nine growers who grow the pumps kins for me. i prefer to color the cream color and the pink color because the walls can be up to 13-inch thick. >> it's going to look like a bowl. >> the carvings that i do will rot. they only last for two weeks. but to me i think it's an art. >> somewhere linus is smiling. by the way, steve said he started carving pumpkins as a hobby. since then he has done it as a pro across the united states as far away as poland. we want to thank each and every one of you for watching anger.
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al jazeera. i'm del walters from new york. you can go to where the news continues 24 hours a day. >> hi i'm lisa fletcher and you're in the stream. some native americans drive more than 100 miles to cast a ballot and they're fed up . voting, it is essential to our democracy. but some native americans in montana say they don't have equal access. they filed a lawsuit against county and state election officials asking for satellite voting on their reservations to begin 30 days prior le


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