Attacks against the White House over the NSA spying scandal and the disastrous Obamacare rollout continued this weekend, with lawmakers blanketing Sunday talk shows to blast the administration.
On “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) called for the head of NSA chief Keith Alexander.
“I think he's seriously damaged our standing in the world. Now, we're seen to be spying not only on foreign leaders, but there's an accusation that we spied on the Pope, as well,” he said. “So I think, really, that there are problems. And we've lost a lot of credibility. The only way I think you could start afresh is with somebody new in charge of your intelligence.”
Meanwhile, on CNN’s State of the Union, Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) repeated what’s become a broad chorus from the right: the failed rollout should delay implementation of the law.
“It's time to call a timeout,” she said.
Even Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate Obama defeated in last year’s presidential election, took shots at the White House. On “Meet the Press” he said Obama's dishonesty over the ability of American's to keep their insurance "has undermined the foundation of his second term – I think it is rotting it away.”
He added that what “has really undermined the president's credibility in the hearts of the American people is that he went out, as a centerpiece of his campaign and as a centerpiece of Obamacare over the last several years, saying time and time again that fundamental to his plan was the right people would have to keep their insurance plan, and he knew that was not the case.”
"Had the president been truthful and told the American people that millions would lose their insurance and millions more would see their premiums skyrocket… there would have been such a hue and cry against it, (that) it would not have passed," Romney said.
Administration officials and allies attempted to defend the president, claiming he did not know about the extent of the NSA spy program and that he was not responsible for the failed health care reform roll out. But as Obama’s defenders attempted to protect the president, they lessened expectations for enrollment figures for the health care bill.
For instance, Dan Pfeiffer, a close adviser to the president, said that the health exchanges should be working by the end of November – two months behind schedule.
Consultants working to fix the site “believe they can get the website working smoothly for the vast majority of Americans by the end of this month,” he said on ABC.
And then, on Fox News Sunday, Ezekiel Emanuel, a bioethicist who worked on the health care law, blamed insurance companies for its early problems.
"The law does not say, ‘Sears drop coverage!’ Sears decides what’s good for Sears,” Emanuel said. “The insurance decides how to make money. When the private companies decide to drop an individual, you blame Obama. He isn’t responsible for that.”