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President Obama Thought He Lost Health Care Ruling Because He Was Watching Cable News

Even the President was fooled.

ABC’s Jake Tapper reports that President Obama learned about the Supreme Court’s healthcare ruling by watching cable news… and initially thought that the law had been overturned because of the erroneous reports on CNN and Fox News.

Standing with White House chief of staff Jack Lew and looking at a television in the “Outer Oval” featuring a split screen of four different networks, the president saw graphics on the screens of the first two cable news networks to break the news — CNN and Fox News Channel — announcing, wrongly, that he had lost.

Senior administration officials say the president was calm.

A couple minutes later, White House counsel Kathy Ruemmler came to Outer Oval and gave him two thumbs-up. Ruemmler had gotten the correct information from a White House lawyer at the Supreme Court and from SCOTUSblog.com.

Update: more from the NY Times.

Mr. Obama, one official said, was absorbing the news with a quizzical expression on his face. Jack Lew, the White House chief of staff, stood next to him. When Ms. Ruemmler told him that court had upheld the ruling in a 5-to4 vote, he broke out in a broad smile and gave her a hug. The networks continued to report a negative ruling, though with the sound turned off, Mr. Obama paid no attention.

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