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Sebelius now subs for Clinton who subbed for Holder

Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), speaks during a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013. A day after her deputy apologized for the botched Obamacare exchange, Sebelius followed suit as she stared down accusations that she wasnÕt forthcoming enough about the potential problems. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg *** Local Caption *** Kathleen Sebelius Kathleen Sebelius testifies before Congress. (Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius spent Wednesday morning doing a star turn as the Obama administration’s latest piñata of the season, stepping in for former piñatas Secretary of State Hillary “Benghazi” Clinton, who spent a few months hanging in that spot, replacing longtime target Attorney General Eric “Black Panthers” and “Fast and Furious”  Holder.

Sebelius spent more than three hours answering questions — and sitting through speeches –from the House Energy and Commerce Committee, apologizing for the obvious. Unlike Clinton’s and Holder’s “scandals,” there’s no wiggle room, no denying the disaster of the Affordable Health Care crawl-out.

So Sebelius didn’t deny it, promising to fix the glitches and taking blame. “I am as frustrated and angry as anyone with the flawed launch of,” Sebelius said of the Web site disaster. And she apologized to folks unable to buy health insurance because of the Web site problems and said she was going to fix the site. The problems are “fixable,” she said.

And there was this obituary-worthy quote: “Hold me accountable for the debacle,” Sebelius said. “I’m responsible.”

And while Sebelius squirmed, Clinton was off campaigning for folks like Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe, giving lucrative speeches and working on her 2016 presidential campaign.

Holder, who we last saw in New Zealand, is off this week delivering “remarks at the  Arab Forum on Asset Recovery” on Monday, “and remarks at the Institut Supérieur de  la Magistrature in Morrocco” on Wednesday.

We’re thinking those two are having much more fun.

Al Kamen, an award-winning columnist on the national staff of The Washington Post, created the “In the Loop” column in 1993.



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Emily Heil · October 30, 2013

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