Dylan Scott

Dylan Scott is a reporter for Talking Points Memo. He previously reported for Governing magazine in Washington, D.C., and the Las Vegas Sun. His work has been recognized with a 2013 American Society of Business Publication Editors award for Best Feature Series and a 2010 Associated Press Society of Ohio award for Best Investigative Reporting. He can be reached at

Articles by Dylan

In a flipping of the proverbial script, a Senate Democrat facing a tough re-election race used a confirmation hearing of Sylvia Mathews Burwell, nominated to head the Department of Health and Human Services, to advocate forcefully in favor of Obamacare.

While Republican senators mostly went through the motions with their anti-Obamacare talking points or outright endorsed Burwell as Kathleen Sebelius's replacement, Sen. Kay Hagan (D-NC) used her time to trumpet the benefits of Medicaid expansion -- and emphasize the downside of not expanding.

Left unsaid, but strongly implied, was that her opponent, North Carolina House Speaker Thom Tillis, who locked up the GOP nomination earlier this week, had been instrumental in stopping the state from expanding Medicaid under the law.

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House Republicans spent Wednesday morning grilling insurance industry executives in a follow-up to their now-thoroughly debunked study on how many Obamacare enrollees have paid their premiums.

The testimony of the executives had already rebutted the GOP's earlier finding that only 67 percent of enrollees had actually paid so far. So the lawmakers went fishing for any other bad news that might be out there. They once again came up empty.

Rep. Tim Murphy (R-PA), chair of the subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee that hosted the hearing, opened the questioning with what seemed like a laundry list of potential problem spots for the health care law.

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Insurance companies plan to effectively debunk the House GOP's much-derided Obamacare survey at a Wednesday hearing.

The hearing is a follow-up to last week's report from the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and is hosted by one of its subcommittees, that found only 67 percent of Obamacare enrollees had paid their premiums as of April 15. An industry source described the survey to TPM as "incredibly rigged" because it excluded any premium payments that were due April 30 or later.

Roughly 3 million of Obamacare's 8 million enrollees would have had payments due after April 15 because they signed up March 15 or later.

A follow-up letter sent to insurers by the committee seemed to indicate that companies had raised that issue. Testimony prepared for Wednesday's hearing, and which was first reported by Bloomberg, is another direct contradiction of the Republicans' methodology.

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Nobody, even Republicans themselves, seems sure how the GOP is going to approach the confirmation of Sylvia Mathews Burwell as the next secretary of Health and Human Services. The fireworks, or perhaps lack thereof, are set to begin on Thursday at the first of two Senate committee hearings.

Will they raise all hell, obstructing the process as much as they can and using Burwell's confirmation to relive Obamacare's many alleged terrors? Or will they take a more restrained tack, getting their talking points across without blowing too much smoke, a recognition that the politics of the law might be changing?

It seems to depend on who you ask.

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Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), a presumptive 2016 presidential contender, wants the current 2016 presumptive frontrunner Hillary Clinton to be dragged in front of the House's new committee on Benghazi to testify about the attacks.

Paul said Monday that the House select committee on Benghazi should subpoena the former secretary of state to testify as part of its investigation.

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Massachusetts is planning to replace its struggling Obamacare website and could temporarily switch to if its new system isn't ready by the time the next open enrollment period begins in November.

The Boston Globe reported Monday that the state plans to switch its old system out for a new one used by other states. It is expected to cost $100 million.

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Health care reform in Massachusetts, which was enacted under then-Gov. Mitt Romney (R) and was the model for Obamacare, corresponded with a drop in the state's mortality rate, a study released Monday found.

The Los Angeles Times reported that study, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, found the state's mortality rate fell by nearly 3 percent, compared to a control group, after it expanded insurance coverage.

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The next big test for Obamacare, after clearing the 8 million enrollments threshold when nobody thought it could, will be what happens to premiums in 2015.

Given the timing of their public release, likely to be in the weeks before voters go to the ballot box this fall, the premiums could also be a factor in the final news cycles of the 2014 campaign.

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The transcript of CBS's October report about the Benghazi attacks, which the network later retracted, has been deleted from the LexisNexis archives, apparently at CBS's request.

ThinkProgress first reported the deletion.

Portions of the Oct. 27 show that featured Lara Logan's now-discredited report now appear with this message: "This document has been deleted at the request of CBS News due to legal or copyright reasons."

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