CIA amassing data on wire transfers. Obama offers a mea culpa. Herbert: No budget plan for Medicaid expansion.
Happy Friday. After all the disclosures about the National Security Agency, a new revelation shows that the CIA has been collecting bulk data on international money transfers like those handled by Western Union. Government officials stress that the data does not include purely domestic bank transactions. [NYTimes]
Topping the news: President Barack Obama announced that he will change a requirement to allow people to retain their canceled insurance policies. The question now is if insurers will adjust to this announcement, if there will be higher premiums to pay and if states will permit this fix. [WaPost] [Politico] [CNN] [NYTimes] [BuzzFeed]
Tweet of the day: From @SteveWorks4You: "Obama says the abysmally low enrollment numbers are proof Americans want Obamacare. William Hung sold twice as many albums."
From @ElaheIzadi: "Breaking: things a hot mess."
Happy birthday: On Friday to state Rep. Neal Hendrickson and on Sunday to Alan Crooks.
In other news: Carolyn McHugh, the presiding judge of the Utah Court of Appeals, faced no opposition to her nomination to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals, but her confirmation could get help up because of partisan politics. [Trib]
-> Rep. Jason Chaffetz argues in an op-ed that deception by the president of the United States -- in this case, ye old "you can keep your plan if you like it" line -- is unacceptable. [Trib]
-> The UTA has sold more than 2,100 of its new prepaid, re-loadable electronic FAREPAY cards in the first month of them being available. To help sales the UTA is offering a 20 percent discount on regular cash fares until mid-March. [Trib]
-> Members of Utah's federal delegation react to President Barack Obama's speech about the Affordable Care Act rollout troubles. [Fox13]
-> New data shows that Utah's payday loan companies charge an average 473.52 percent annual interest rate per loan with one company charging an astronomical 1,564 percent annual interest for a loan in 2012. [Trib]
-> Pat Bagley gives his take on how President Barack Obama is handling the rollout of the Affordable Care Act. [Trib]
-> Public health advocates and community activists are asking Utah health care providers to stop their business with the medical-waste incinerator owned by Stericycle and to use safer alternatives for disposing of medical waste. [Trib] [DNews]
-> Davis County health agencies and community organizations are focusing on improving residents' mental and physical health. Davis County is the sixth healthiest county in Utah, but officials aim to improve with their next step of implementing a five-year plan to address the issue. [Trib]
-> Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman's daughters Mary Anne and Abby Huntsman are dabbling in fashion by modeling little black dresses for charity. The dresses are made by the New York-based fashion company Project Gravitas which donates 10 percent of sales to the spokesmodels' cause, in this case, the Huntsman Cancer Foundation. [Trib]
-> Salt Lake City has named Stuart Clason as the city's new director of economic development. [DNews]
-> Bob Bernick and Bryan Schott discuss why no one believes AG John Swallow, Scott Howell's attempt to return to the Legislature and potential bills on ethics and elections for the upcoming General Session. [UtahPolicy]
-> Bernick offers his take on the trouble with the Legislature trying to police itself on ethics and campaign issues. [UtahPolicy]
-> The state is offering tax credits to two companies with the hopes the investment will add 1,100 jobs to Utah's economy. [Trib]
Nationally: If you don't have time to watch the press conference President Barack Obama gave to apologize about the Affordable Care Act rollout, here are the nine best quotes from it. [WaPost]
-> The U.S. Army has stalled designing new camouflage uniforms that it spent nearly $3 million and took three years to produce. [WaPost]
-> Only 59 members of Congress have voted along party lines less than 90 percent of the time -- a fact that helps explain the current gridlock in the 113th Congress. Democratic Rep. Jim Matheson is the Democratic outlier, only voting with his party 60 percent of the time. [NatJournal]
Where are they?
-- Thomas Burr and Jordan Bailey
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