Mary Landrieu’s defeat in Louisiana on Saturday should have put paid to Obama’s statism. But it didn’t because Republicans evidently have dedicated themselves to throwing away the mandate to end Obamaism that voters gave them in November. Some used to call the Republicans the “stupid party,” but what is going on now goes much farther than mere stupidity can account for.
How else can you view the responses to Obama’s unconstitutional — and hence, illegal — immigration amnesty declaration? The problem extends far beyond that, but the immigration amnesty is the most apt example because it is the most current.
Last Wednesday, House Rules Committee Chairman Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX) — certainly not to be confused with anti-amnesty stalwart Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) — made a startling statement. Pete Sessions said that Republican leaders intend to push an amnesty bill through in January that would subject only the most dangerous illegal alien criminals to deportation.
Let me say that again: the Republican leaders of the House want to endorse Obama’s action by passing a law to embrace it and call it their own.
On Thursday, the House passed a bill that nullified Obama’s amnesty declaration and rebuked him for it. But this was done with the unmistakable intention of letting the bill die in the Senate, where Harry Reid won’t allow it to be voted on. It was yet another pointless exercise intended only to pacify conservatives. It was a pathetic joke.
At the same time, House leaders — Boehner, McCarthy, and their accomplices — are readying a “cromnibus” bill, another thousand-plus-page monstrosity that will fund the government for the whole fiscal year except for the Department of Homeland Security, which will be funded through about March when another fight can be ginned up to defund the amnesty program (for which about 1,000 new government workers are now being hired to implement).
Cram your “cromnibus,” Mr. Speaker. You have taken impeachment off the table, and — with Senate about-to-be Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — you’ve also taken another government shutdown off the table. But if you won’t impeach Obama — and though he absolutely deserves it, there is a legitimate argument based entirely on race to not do it — the only constitutional power you have left is to stop funding of objectionable programs.
What are you guys afraid of? The press continues to bully you with the idea that voters were angry about the government shutdown of 2013, so you have to be afraid — very afraid — of doing anything like that again.
For those who have forgotten, the 2013 government shutdown lasted only about 17 days. Nobody suffered for it: Social Security checks still went out, the military was paid, and government employees received back pay for the whole amount of their wages and absurdly high salaries they weren’t paid in those few short days.
The whole dispute was over Obamacare. The House wanted to do what the voters wanted which was to stop the funding of it. Naturally, Harry Reid and Obama refused. The House bargained with itself, as it always does, and offered to delay its funding, but Reid and Obama rejected that too, so the government shut down — Obama’s choice, not Congress’s — on about October 1.
The Dems and their dominant media voices screamed. They said that the nation’s debts wouldn’t get paid, accusing Republicans of violating Section 4 of the 14th Amendment which any delay or default in payment wouldn’t violate. (It says that, “The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law… shall not be questioned.” The Dems and the media said that the provision prevented Congress from limiting the size of the debt in any way. Hogwash. The pertinent part reads “public debt of the United States, authorized by law.” If Congress doesn’t increase the size of debt authorized by law, that’s a decision Congress is entitled to make.)
In the end, the House surrendered, as it always has under Boehner.
The result? The “damage” to Republicans was so bad that voters crushed the Democrats, gave Obama a proper whuppin’, and elected enough Republican senators to end Harry Reid’s reign of error in the Senate. Such a clear rejection of a president’s agenda doesn’t exist in living memory.
Apparently it’s impolite to point that out. Why the hell does anyone believe that a government shutdown wasn’t exactly what voters wanted? Are Messrs. Boehner and McConnell so fearful of the media that they believe the nonsense about government shutdowns and can ignore the mandate they’ve been given? Are the many faithful conservatives in the House and Senate mollified by the nonsense that’s going on?
Clearly so. And the results will be stark. Obamacare will continue to damage medical care in this country, to impose the taxes contained in the law, and to be funded despite its effect of taking money out of every middle class family’s pockets. Obama’s unconstitutional, unilateral changes to that law will stand. Our national debt will continue to rise at an unprecedented rate and nothing will be done to reduce the size and cost of government. Our national defense will continue to be eroded at so rapid a pace that no one can even plan for the defenses and intelligence-gathering we need.
No matter how hard they try, the Republicans couldn’t do a better job of laying the groundwork for a Democrat to succeed Obama. Whether it’s Hillary, Elizabeth Warren, or some other hardcore liberal won’t even matter. The Republicans will have sacrificed their mandate to the whims of the New York Times and MSNBC. And they will become the political Un-Party. No mandate, no strategy, no agenda, and no claim to political office.
It’s tempting to say that what’s done is done, and let Congress go home in the hope that Boehner and McConnell will take a stand in January against Obama’s statism and unconstitutional acts. But how are they going to do that if Pete Sessions’ revelation of a Republican-sponsored amnesty bill comes true and if Obamacare remains untouchable, further injuring every middle class family and the economy at large?
As Sun Tzu wrote, in chaos there is opportunity. The Dems are in complete disarray now, licking their wounds from their losses. Even Chuckie Schumer is saying that passing Obamacare the way they did (without a single Republican vote in either chamber) was wrong. But by the time Congress reconvenes in January, they and Obama will have decided on a strategy that continues to blame the Republicans for every failure, and Congress’s approval ratings won’t rise from the basement because their spokesmen — such as John McCain, Republicans’ chief spokesman on defense — are unwilling and unable to pin the tail on the Democrats.
If they don’t take a stand now — even if they lose — what hope can we have that their strength in the next Congress will have any better result? We can’t.
What purpose is served by voting strong Republican majorities in both houses of Congress when those majorities don’t do the job they’re elected to do? None at all. And that’s what the Republicans will find out for themselves when the next Democratic presidential candidate stands for inauguration in a little over twenty-five months and the Senate returns to Democratic control.