Obama defends Affordable Health Care at Boston’s Faneuil Hall: ‘We’re in this together’

President Barack Obama speaks at the podium at Faneuil Hall. Photo by Jeremiah Robsinson/Metro.
President Barack Obama speaks at the podium at Faneuil Hall. Credit: Jeremiah Robinson/Metro

President Barack Obama was welcomed by tremendous applause today at Boston’s historic Faneuil Hall, where he defended the federal government’s Affordable Care Act amid mounting criticism over Healthcare.gov website glitches.

After an introduction by Gov. Deval Patrick, whom Obama referred to as one of the “best” governors, the president referred to Mayor Thomas Menino as “one of America’s best mayors.”

He also acknowledged the city’s passionate Red Sox fans, who were just hours away from Game Six of the World Series, saying, “I am well aware that the presidential visit is not the biggest thing going on in Boston. … I tried to grow a beard, but Michelle, she wasn’t having it.”

Within moments, protesters began chanting about energy issues, yelling, among other things, “Stop the pipeline!” and “Stop climate change for our generation” before they were ushered out.

The outburst was met by boos.

“OK, we’re talking about health care today. … That was the wrong rally. … We had the climate change rally back in the summer. This is the health care rally,” the president responded.

Transitioning to his signature health care law, Obama said there is “no denying” that the website is too slow, and that “too many people have gotten stuck.”

Earlier today, the U.S. government’s top health official, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, said that private insurance companies, not the new healthcare law, are to blame for hundreds of thousands of people losing their coverage in the past few weeks.

Sebelius called the debut of the Affordable Care Act a “debacle” as she sought to assure skeptical lawmakers at a congressional hearing that the administration will fix technical flaws with the website.

“The website hasn’t worked the way it’s supposed to … as a consequence a lot of people haven’t had a chance to see just how good the prices for these quality (services) really are,” Obama said.

“And I’m not happy about it. … There is no excuse for it.”

Obama went on to slam opponents of the Affordable Care Act, saying that “providing people with health care should be a no-brainer,” and that if anyone has any better ideas, “I’d be happy to listen.”

He wrapped up his remarks by saying, “We are in this together, and we’re going to see it through.”

Follow Morgan Rousseau on Twitter: @MetroMorgan
Follow Metro Boston on Twitter: @MetroBOS



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Drive charged in fatal hit and run, police…

The NYPD has arrested a man they say is responsible for a fatal hit and run in Manhattan last weekend. Doohee Cho, 33, was hit…

Local

Mayor de Blasio raises minimum wage for some…

Mayor Bill de Blasio signed an executive order Tuesday morning that will raise the minimum wage for workers employed by private companies that receive more…

National

3 myths about the working poor

Linda Tirado works to debunk some common stereotypes about the working poor in her new book, "Hand to Mouth."

Money

Lawsuit funding advances: friend or foe?

Reporter was commissioned to write this in-depth article Many plaintiffs awaiting resolution of their lawsuit or legal claim often find themselves in a tricky financial…

Going Out

Which NYC restaurant lost its three-star Michelin rating?

A record 73 restaurants in New York City collected coveted Michelin stars on Tuesday as a mix of trendy spots and fine-dining stalwarts underscored the…

Entertainment

Interview: Metro chats with filmmaker Meir Kalmanson, man…

A New York filmmaker hands out smiles to its residents.

Television

TV watch list, Tuesday, Sept. 30: 'Selfie,' 'Utopia'…

'Selfie' This modern day take on the "My Fair Lady" story stars John Cho in the Henry Higgins role. Perhaps instead of "the rain in…

Music

Can't-miss weekend events continue to attract the masses

Reporter was commissioned to write this in-depth article Earlier this summer, the Firefly Music Festival drew crowds of tens of thousands of people to Dover, Delaware.…

MLB

Mets 2014 report card

The Mets wrapped up their eight straight season without a playoff appearance last weekend. Needless to say, they fell a bit short of general manager…

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Cowboys, Packers, Ravens, Chargers climb

NFL Power Rankings: Cowboys, Packers, Ravens, Chargers climb

NFL

Ryan Quigley making a big impact for Jets…

Ryan Quigley, now in his second year as the Jets punter, had an exceptional afternoon with six punts for an average of 51.7 yards per punt.

NFL

3 positives to take from Jets loss to…

The Jets suffered another loss Sunday — 24-17 to the Lions — but the reason why it hurts so much for Jets fans is that…

Style

Products that support breast cancer awareness and research

Asics GT-1000, $100 Asics’ third pink collection in collaboration with Christina Applegate’s Right Action for Women includes this pink-accented version of its best-selling GT-1000 3…

Wellbeing

Dr. Marisa Weiss: Where we stand on breast…

As an oncologist and a survivor herself, Dr. Marisa Weiss knows the urgency felt by those diagnosed with breast cancer. Genetic testing has accelerated the…

Wellbeing

Bees' stingers hold new hope for cancer cure

A promising new lead in the search for a cancer cure has turned up in a place that most people naturally avoid. A team from…

Home

Emily Henderson on small space design

Design expert Emily Henderson shows us how to upgrade our cramped quarters.