Sneed: Why isn’t Obama pal and adviser Jarrett sharing blame for ACA rollout?
BY MICHAEL SNEED October 23, 2013 7:28PM
Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, right, speaks with Prince William and Kate Duchess of Cambridge as they arrive with their son Prince George at the Chapel Royal in St James's Palace, Wednesday Oct. 23, 2013. Britain's 3-month-old future monarch, Prince George will be christened Wednesday with water from the River Jordan at a rare four-generation gathering of the royal family in London. (AP Photo/John Stillwell/Pool)
Updated: November 25, 2013 1:26PM
The little prince . . .
It’s no secret England’s popular Prince William and his commoner wife, Kate Middleton, are trying to shake a few webs out of the royal cranium.
Alas, some things don’t change.
The royal font where little Prince George, the royal issue of Wills and Kate, was christened in London Wednesday was filled with water from the River Jordan, where Christians believe Christ was baptized.
If that isn’t too much to take, try this:
◆ The baby wore a lace and satin gown.
◆ There were seven godparents, but the couple’s siblings, Prince Harry and Pippa Middleton, were not among them.
◆ Only one godparent was royal, Will’s cousin, Princess Zara, who stunned her family by stepping outside the royal enclosure to marry rugby celeb Mike Tindall, who has a nose unlike the royal aquiline schnozz. His looks like a squashed grape.
◆ Pal postscript: One of the godparents was Julia Samuel, who was described as the best friend of Princess Diana, the late mother of Prince William, whose death made headlines when she was killed in a car accident in Paris.
The Jarrett file . . .
Why isn’t White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett part of the blame game in the Obamacare rollout debacle?
Sneed hears Jarrett, the president’s best friend, was supposed to keep a close eye on Obama’s health care legacy — before its website rollout was launched into a technical nightmare.
◆ The shocker: So why did President Barack Obama have Jarrett sit down privately with insurance execs Wednesday bollixed by the rollout imbroglio? Isn’t that like asking the fox to guard the hen house?
◆ Backshot: Sneed is told Jarrett is also this/close to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who was in charge of the website launch.
◆ Buckshot: So why is Sebelius the only one being blasted for being the overseer of this train wreck?
◆ Upshot: “There is no way Jarrett didn’t have a handle on what was happening on the Obamacare front,” said a Sneed source. “Why wouldn’t President Obama postpone the opening of his health care website if he’d been told its application process had major online flaws?”
◆ Flipshot: The White House’s response to Sneed’s query Wednesday if Jarrett knew about HealthCare.gov’s flaws before the site went live was a quote by White House Press Secretary Jay Carney saying the president is frustrated with the result and working on making improvements.
◆ On Wednesday, Carney said the White House knew there would be “glitches” but didn’t know how significant they would be.
Glitches? How about a catastrophe?
◆ The big debt: Sneed is told one reason Obama has stayed the executioner’s hand on Sebelius is his indebtedness to her — she’s a Roman Catholic who he credits with having the guts to stand up to the Catholic church hierarchy in their contraception battle with his health care plan.
But it is not known why Obama continues to give Jarrett a green light.
“It’s very clear the president is very supportive of the secretary,” said Fabien Levy, a Sebelius spokesman. “There are no plans for anyone to leave. It’s not on anyone’s mind right now. The site is up and running at full capacity,” he said.
Then he added: “Any questions about Valerie Jarrett would have to be referred to the White House.”
The Durbin file . . .
Gasp? U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, a pretty unflappable guy, has a fib flap on his hands.
◆ To wit: At issue is a Facebook posting made by Durbin Sunday claiming a GOP House leader told President Obama, “I cannot even stand to look at you” during a shutdown negotiation meeting.
◆ Yipes! The White House denies it happened.
◆ Yipes! The House speaker’s office claims such an exchange did not take place.
◆ Gads! Durbin’s communications chief, Max Gleischman, tells Sneed, “Senator Durbin stands by his comments.”
Well, ouch ouch ouch! Is Sneed smoking posies or did the White House just call Durbin, a huge Obama supporter, a fibber?
Sneedlings . . .
Thursday’s birthdays: Kevin Kline, 66; Bill Wyman, 77, and F. Murray Abraham, 74.