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10 things you need to know today: November 14, 2013
Healthcare.gov's first month was officially a bust, Snapchat rejects Facebook's $3 billion offer, and more
 
A billion dollars isn't as cool as it used to be. 
A billion dollars isn't as cool as it used to be.  (Jens Buttner/dpa/Corbis)

1. Just 106,000 picked health plans in ObamaCare marketplaces' first month
The Obama administration said Wednesday that 106,000 people — far fewer than expected — selected health insurance plans through ObamaCare's state and federal online marketplaces in their first month. Only 26,794 signed up through the troubled Healthcare.gov website. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell accused the White House of "Enron-like accounting" for touting those who picked plans, rather than those who actually bought coverage. [New York Times]
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2. Snapchat spurns Facebook's $3 billion offer
The fast-growing messaging service Snapchat has reportedly turned down a $3 billion buyout offer from Facebook. Young people are flocking to Snapchat, a mobile app that lets them trade messages or photos that disappear after a few seconds. Facebook has been losing young users, and wants Snapchat to bring them back. Snapchat co-founder and CEO Evan Spiegel, 23, is hoping the company will keep growing and fetch an even bigger price later. [USA Today]
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3. American ships reach the Philippines with aid for typhoon victims
U.S. Navy ships, including an aircraft carrier and a 700-foot supply ship, arrived in the Philippines on Thursday to deliver badly needed food, water, and medicine to victims of Typhoon Haiyan. Despite a mounting aid effort, many survivors still haven't received badly needed supplies, as debris from the massive storm is blocking roads, including the one connecting the devastated city of Tacloban with its airport. [CNN, BBC News]
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4. Four Marines die in an accident at Camp Pendleton
Four Marines were killed Wednesday while performing maintenance on an artillery range at California's Fort Pendleton. The accident was not caused by live fire. The names of the dead will be announced within 24 hours, after their families are notified. "Our first priority is to provide the families with the support they need," Brig. Gen. John Bullard said. [Los Angeles Times]
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5. GOP lawmakers say they will try to impeach Holder
House Republicans say they plan to introduce articles of impeachment against Attorney General Eric Holder on Thursday. They say Holder has failed to uphold federal laws — by declining to enforce laws on gay marriage, for example. They also accuse him of lying to Congress when he refused to give a congressional committee subpoenaed documents about the botched "Fast and Furious" sting that involved selling weapons to gun traffickers. [Reuters]
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6. Toronto council asks crack-smoking mayor to quit
Toronto's City Council voted on Wednesday to ask scandal-plagued Mayor Rob Ford to step down. Ford and his brother voted against the motion, but it passed 37-5. Ford, who is refusing to resign despite admitting that he smoked crack, shrugged and said, "I effed up." Later he confessed to buying drugs, and tried to introduce a motion calling for everyone on the council to undergo drug and alcohol testing, but his colleagues laughed at him. [National Post]
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7. Two Secret Service agents get kicked off Obama's security team
The Secret Service, still bruised by a 2012 prostitution scandal, has removed two agents from President Obama's security detail for alleged misconduct. Senior supervisor Ignacio Zamora Jr. allegedly tried to force his way back into a woman's hotel room after leaving behind a bullet from his gun. The follow-up investigation uncovered sexually suggestive emails Zamora and fellow supervisor Timothy Barraclough sent a female subordinate. [Washington Post]
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8. Markets rise as the Fed signals continuing stimulus
Stocks rose around the world early Thursday after the Federal Reserve's incoming chief, Janet Yellen, said in remarks prepared for her Senate confirmation hearing that the central bank would have to continue its huge asset-buying economic stimulus program for a while longer. Yellen said that with unemployment still high there was "more work to do." The comments sent the Dow and S&P 500 indexes jumping to record levels late Wednesday. [Reuters]
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9. Alleged Baldwin stalker goes to jail for contempt
A Canadian woman accused of stalking actor Alec Baldwin got a 30-day jail term on Wednesday for contempt of court after she repeatedly interrupted another witness by saying, "I want to testify." Genevieve Sabourin, 41, says she had a one-night stand with Baldwin and he promised her a lifetime of omelets. The actor says he never had a sexual relationship with Sabourin. [CNN]
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10. Diamond fetches record price at Swiss auction
The Pink Star diamond sold for a record $83 million at a Sotheby's auction in Geneva. The old record for the most paid for a gemstone at auction was set three years ago when another diamond, the Graff Pink, sold for $46.2 million. That gem was half the size of the Pink Star, which measures 1.06 by 0.81 inches, and is set in a ring. The buyer of the Pink Star was New York diamond cutter Isaac Wolf. [BBC News]

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Harold Maass is a contributing editor at TheWeek.com. He has been writing for The Week since the 2001 launch of the U.S. print edition. Harold has worked for a variety of news outlets, including The Miami HeraldFox News, and ABC News.

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