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US President Donald Trump blames Republican radicals for failure of healthcare plan to replace Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act

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Washington, March 27, 2017: US President Donald Trump on Sunday blamed Republican lawmakers from the ultraconservative Freedom Caucus for the failure of a Republican healthcare plan to replace former President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act, after blaming Democrats for the loss on Friday.

“Democrats are smiling in D.C. that the Freedom Caucus, with the help of Club For Growth and Heritage, have saved Planned Parenthood & Ocare!” EFE news quoted Trump as saying in a tweet.

The Republican leadership pulled the legislation to repeal and replace Obama’s healtcare reform, popularly known as Obamacare, from the US House of Representatives on Friday due to the lack of support within the GOP.

The bill failed to move forward, in part, because of objections of about 30 lawmakers with the Freedom Caucus.

A total of 216 votes were needed to approve the legislation, but the Freedom Caucus opposed the bill because they wanted fewer regulations in it and for people to be able to select what medical care they wanted covered in their healthcare insurance plans.

Caucus leader Mark Meadows said on Sunday that the bill’s failure was not the end of the discussion of healthcare reform.

Speaking to reporters in the Oval Office after the withdrawal of the bill on Friday, Trump had sought to deflect blame onto the Democrats.

“We were very close, it was a very tight margin. We had no Democrat support, no votes from the Democrats,” he said. “I think the losers are Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer because now they own Obamacare.”

Obamacare, a law designed to increase the quality of health insurance and make it accessible to citizens with low incomes, has provided medical coverage to more than 20 million people who did not have it before.

Many, if not all of those people would have lost their healthcare coverage under the now-shelved Republican plan.

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Googling ‘idiot’ Bringing up Donald Trump Pictures Drags Google in Trouble

The House committee had also questioned YouTube, Twitter and Facebook executives at separate hearings on bias in big tech

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Sundar Pichai
Google CEO Sundar Pichai testifies at a House Judiciary Committee hearing "examining Google and its Data Collection, Use and Filtering Practices" on Capitol Hill in Washington. VOA

US Democratic Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren, in an effort to understand how Google search algorithms work, asked its CEO Sundar Pichai why so many pictures of President Donald Trump appear when she does a Google search for “idiot”.

“Right now, if you Google the word ‘idiot’ under images, a picture of Donald Trump comes up. I just did that,” the California Democrat told Pichai during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Tuesday here.

“How would that happen? How does search work so that would occur?” Lofgren asked Pichai, according to the Washington Post.

The Google CEO — who was at the hearing to address allegations of political bias in his company’s widely used search engine — said the results were based on billions of keywords ranked according to over 200 factors such as relevance, popularity, how others were using the search term, to determine how to best match a query with results.

“So it’s not some little man sitting behind the curtain figuring out what we’re going to show the user?” Lofgren asked. “It’s basically a compilation of what users are generating.”

Republicans have long accused Google of political bias, which the company has strongly denied.

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Why googling ‘idiot’ brings up Trump photos, Congresswoman asks Pichai. VOA

In August, Trump said in a tweet that a Google search for “Trump News” showed only reports from “Fake News Media.” He concluded it was “rigged” against him so “almost all stories and news was bad.”

House Republicans said they wanted to hold the hearing — entitled “Transparency & Accountability: Examining Google and its Data Collection, Use and Filtering Practices” — to make sure the search giant was being impartial.

“Americans put their trust in big tech companies to honour freedom of speech and champion open dialogue,” Republican House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte of Virginia said in a statement before the hearing.

The House committee had also questioned YouTube, Twitter and Facebook executives at separate hearings on bias in big tech.

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In response to Republicans who complained about Google searches, Democratic Representative Ted Lieu said: “If you want positive search results, do positive things. If you don’t want negative search results, don’t do negative things.”

“And to some of my colleagues across the aisle, if you’re getting bad press articles and bad search results, don’t blame Google or Facebook or Twitter, consider blaming yourself.” (IANS)