Editor’s Note – As many pundits agreed, the President’s response to the historical drubbing his party took on Tuesday was dubious at best. He spoke about hearing the 2/3 of America that spoke by staying home instead of the ones that actually voted. It was almost contempt for the people to swat away how the elections turned out. This was clearly a repudiation of you Mr. Obama.
He talked about working together with Congress and his tone sounded conciliatory, but his words belied all. He said he does not read the tea leaves of elections yet he spiked the football in the past telling America that “elections have consequences!” Now, not so much? Mr. Obama – you and Harry Reid were basically handed your hats.
Obama seems to think that Congress now owes him something it appeared from his presser. He wants Congress to give him their plans and ideas, as if that is how it is supposed to work. Unfortunately, his edicts to Congress means he is telling the Americans they represent that he is still going to do what he feels is necessary – alone.
Yesterday, newly reelected and presumptive Majority Leader of the Senate for the 114th Congress, Mitch McConnell and John Boehner today, each spoke in tones not heard in years and rang out clear as a bell. Mr. Obama, your policies are what are on trial here, not Congress’.
It is very difficult to know exactly how bad things were in the Senate behind closed doors, and how difficult it was to stay civil with Harry Reid and other shrill Democrat Senators. Many got mad that he did not fight back more fiercely and that Boehner was too timid. In January, we will see for ourselves how their metal is forged.
Since we have never had enough power against Obama’s policies, now we get to see the forces come to bear on him, not on the people anymore. We at SUA have been critical of Boehner and McConnell in the past, now we hope we were incorrect. We like the initial statements, now we get to see how they will proceed.
Several times Boehner pointed out to the President, that they were going to do the will of the people, that is their job.
Mr. Obama, America spoke loud and clear, liberal policies and go-it-alone strategies and policies are unwelcome – this rang true not only in the US Congress, but even more clearly in Governor’s offices and Statehouses across the land. America was seeing red, and now America is painted red once again.
‘Republicans had a good night’ is the best you can say? No, America had a GREAT night. McConnell: “Trust but verify” is the start, let’s see what Obama does now and if he burns his fingers for ‘playing with matches’ as Boehner said.
John Boehner Strikes Combative Tone
House Speaker Puts Onus on Obama to Work With Republicans
Washington—House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) struck a combative tone Thursday in his first post election comments, vowing the House would again vote to repeal the federal health-care law and warning the White House from “poisoning the well” on immigration.
Emboldened by electoral victories that allowed Republicans to take control of the Senate, Mr. Boehner put the onus on President Barack Obama to work with Republicans now that they will control both the House and Senate in the new year.
“Finding common ground is going to be hard work, but it will be even harder if the president isn’t willing to work with us,” Mr. Boehner said in a news conference on Capitol Hill.
Mr. Boehner specifically warned Mr. Obama from taking executive action to address problems with the immigration system. Such a move could ruin any chances of lawmakers taking on a broad overhaul of a system the Ohio Republican said is not working.
“If the president continues to act on his own, he’s going to poison the well,” Mr. Boehner said. “When you play with matches, you take the risk of burning yourself, and he’s going to burn himself if he continues to go down this path.”
Mr. Boehner laid out a number of items on Republicans’ wish list to address when the new Congress begins its term in January. Mr. Boehner said lawmakers will work on approval of the Keystone XL pipeline, an overhaul of the tax code, and a number of bills related to the economy that the House has voted on and passed this year.
Additionally, he said Republicans would continue to try and repeal Mr. Obama’s signature achievement in office, the Affordable Care Act.
“Obamacare is hurting our economy, is hurting middle class families,” Mr. Boehner said. “It should be repealed and it should be replaced with common sense reforms. Whether that can pass the Senate I don’t know, but I know in the House it will pass.”
This Election Day, patriotic Americans must vote to rein in President Obama. Informed and objective observers can only conclude our president and his followers work hardest to weaken U.S. military superiority, to the manifest advantage of our global enemies.
Moreover, in bypassing Congress wherever possible, the current administration seized unilateral control over foreign policy and national security, flouting the original and express intent of America’s Founders.
To begin with, two specific concerns are worth noting, among many more that deserve lengthier discussion. When did the American populace endorse unilateral reduction in our nuclear arsenal, supposedly in line with comparable Russian actions? Russia is not a trustworthy partner in any respect.
Moreover, Mr. Obama’s policies support and enable the Muslim Brotherhood and the Islamic State, known militant and radical Islamic groups. He backed the election of Mohammed Morsi as Egypt’s new president, even as Mr. Morsi tried establishing an intolerant Islamic caliphate.
We should never forget that Mr. Morsi’s military and police attacked non-Muslims and persecuted Christians, who were beaten, raped, robbed and killed.
Meanwhile, Mr. Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said and did nothing other than support Mr. Morsi and his radical government. Luckily, destiny and understanding the “realities” of Islamic terror brought Gen. Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi and his patriots to the Egyptian people.
Do Americans in both political parties really wish to lay down their arms, cripple our military defenses and cede our sovereignty to rising nations such as Russia and China, to shadowy actors such as the Islamic State, to the United Nations or to some new global superstate?
Is the illusion of peace worth the mounting costs?
Throughout the 238-year history of the United States, our military forces experienced many transformations. Initially, the Army, Navy and Marines were patriots who organized to fight against the tyranny of England.
They banded together to win a revolution and became a force for securing the fledgling nation.
Over ensuing decades and centuries, our military expanded, evolved, and eventually became the strongest fighting force on earth.
These changes all reflected the need and threats of the day and the political will of the government and its elected officials.
What has the Obama administration been seeking to achieve since Jan. 20, 2009? As Adm. James Lyons has stated, “With the weakest national security team since World War II, it is no wonder that both our foreign and national security policies lack coherence and direction.
The administration’s faculty-lounge logic that, in the 21st century, ‘diplomacy’ will substitute for military solutions to international crisis, overlooks or chooses to ignore a key factor: recognized military power that provides the essential underpinnings to successful diplomacy. It is called ‘peace through strength.’”
After six years, is it clear what Mr. Obama’s military objectives are anywhere on this earth? Do Americans truly believe that their national security is better protected by the Obama administration than it was before its inception?
As we approach a pivotal set of elections that affect all Americans, we who care deeply about the defense of this great nation must ask and answer a series of probing questions.
What were Mr. Obama’s intentions toward the military after taking office?
What impact has he had on the military ever since?
What will his impact be through Jan. 20, 2017, when he completes his second term in office?
A review of the president’s record and informed consideration of the current state of play suggest that America occupies a precarious position, before numerous, clear and present dangers.
To date, Mr. Obama’s actions and inactions across the globe and at home compound a long list of failures. Whether by design, malfeasance or stark ineptitude, this past is prologue for a deeply disturbing future.
Left unchecked, Mr. Obama will degrade further America’s credibility, respect, trust and standing in the community of nations.
Thinking past Election Day, Americans should consider threats posed to this country under the president’s “leadership,” including Syria, Iran, Russia, China, our eroded relationship with linchpin Israel, the Muslim Brotherhood, North Korea, the Islamic State and al Qaeda.
Why does our president give billions of dollars in aid and supply arms to regimes that declare America and our ally Israel to be mortal enemies, worthy only of destruction?
Why would Mr. Obama work so hard to disarm American citizens while he rushes to arm our worst enemies?
Mr. Obama is relentlessly wrecking the Defense Department, downsizing and overburdening our military forces, overwhelming the U.S. economy, and speeding this country toward national suicide.
As we pause before voting, Americans need to think carefully about the risks involved letting Mr. Obama rule for two more years with little counterbalancing influence from the legislative branch.
This November your vote counts a lot more than ever before.
Barack Obama is antsy. His aides can see it when he alights from Air Force One from the all-too-occasional campaign trips he has taken this fall. There’s a sigh, an unhappy-camper body language when he finds himself back in the depressing slipstream of Ebola confabs and national-security-crisis-of-the-day meetings. The vibe, according to people in his orbit, is not so much of being checked out as of being fed up.
“[I] do like campaigning. … It’s fun,” Obama said on Thursday, speaking wistfully at a rally for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Mike Michaud in Maine. But the Michaud event was the exception, not the rule. “There have been $2 billion in ads shitting on the president and no one to defend him,” a senior administration official told us. “He is very fired up to get this campaign behind him, to run through the tape.”
Obama, for so long the man with the bright future, has hated being relegated to a sidelined pariah in the midterms—even if it is the inevitable lot of a second-termer with approval ratings hovering in the low 40s—according to a dozen current and former Obama advisers we spoke with in recent days. He both resents the narrative that he’s basically irrelevant and doesn’t much relish the fact that many of his longest-serving staffers, the remnant core of his once-buzzing and brash White House, are strapping themselves to ejector seats. More than anything, Obama’s loathing for Washington, an attitude that reads as ennui to outsiders, has hardened into a sullen resignation at being trapped in a broken system he failed to change, advisers told us.
“I sense a certain fatalism there, and it’s disturbing,” says a former adviser on Obama’s campaign who, like many others we talked with for this story, requested anonymity. “There’s a sense that ‘I’ve tried everything, and look where it got me.’ People misread it as disengagement. It’s frustration. But who cares? It’s a bad mind-set.” Another Obama veteran adds, “the bully pulpit is gone, maybe forever.”
Administration officials tell us that Obama’s political and policy teams are planning a big counterattack if the Republicans win the Senate—introducing a slate of legislative proposals and executive actions on immigration, infrastructure and early childhood education that are popular with the Democratic base and that he will dare the GOP to oppose. Time and history, however, aren’t on his side. The six-month period between Election Day and next summer is likely the last chance for Obama to make his mark before the 2016 presidential campaign to succeed him really kicks into high gear. But the implacable opposition of a GOP that has turned him into his party’s albatross and his own hard-to-pin-down state of mind cast doubt on a major comeback.
Many are convinced he has already given up, more or less. “He appears tired,” says Sen. Bob Corker, a Tennessee Republican and one of the few in his party who sees himself as a potential dealmaker in a GOP-controlled Senate. “It is almost as if he is wishing for a six-year term instead of an eight-year term,” added Corker, who would ascend to the chairmanship of the Foreign Relations Committee if Republicans win the chamber. “But if he can get motivated and reenergized, I think this is a tremendous opportunity for the country.”
Obama and his team, gearing up for one final fight, say they are intent on not throwing away the next two-plus years. West Wing officials concede that Obama is weary of the endless partisan combat and the unrelenting six-year GOP strategy of attack, but they insist he has absolutely no intention of embracing his inner lame duck. “I’m not sitting here blithely telling you we are as awesome as we can be,” said one of Obama’s top aides, laughing at his own understatement. “We’ve done a lot of good things this year but not as many as I would have liked. … We know we’re in for a shit storm if we lose the Senate. You have to gird yourself mentally ’cause you are going to come out on the other end.
“But,” the official added, with a glint of actual optimism, “you hit bottom, and then you have the Obama comeback story.”
It’s hard to see that comeback just now, what with Obama’s slow-footed responses to an array of crises and forehead-slapping lapses like his decision to play 18 holes of golf after issuing a statement condemning the American journalist James Foley’s decapitation by Islamic State militants in August. Circumstance and the innate power of the presidency could provide Obama with unanticipated opportunities, but even his closest friends are fretting about Obama’s willingness to make the changes necessary.
You know it’s bad when Obama message man emeritus David Axelrod, who almost never utters a negative word about his former boss, was publicly lamenting to Bloomberg Businessweek last month, “There’s no doubt that there’s a theatrical nature to the presidency that he resists. … Sometimes he can be negligent in the symbolism.”
The historical record provides few encouraging examples. George W. Bush, whose stumbles, of course, gave rise to Obama in the first place, offers the most hopeful recent case of a late-in-the-game turnaround, though it’s not exactly a feel-good story. After he had lost the country’s backing over the handling of the Iraq War, Bush fired his Pentagon chief, took a far more active role in the management of his White House and appointed a new chief of staff credited with rationalizing an often chaotic chain of command that had given disproportionate power to Vice President Dick Cheney. Then again, just as Bush seemed to be regaining his footing, the economy collapsed.
Bill Clinton approached the end of his presidency on a high note, standing at a 62 percent approval rating at this point in his tenure, while Obama today hovers in the 39-to-44 percent range. But times were so different as to render any comparison virtually useless: Republicans were perceived to have overreached by impeaching Clinton in the Lewinsky scandal, a move that alienated moderate swing voters, and Clinton benefited from a booming economy. “Congressional districts were a lot less polarized than they are now, and we had a bunch of Republicans who were desperate to make deals after overreaching on impeachment,” says Joel Johnson, who served as a Clinton strategist during the last two years of the administration.
Obama’s own reactions to the 2010 and 2012 elections offer signals on how he will proceed this time. After the 2010 elections, when Republicans took over the House, he tacked hard to the right, adopting the GOP agenda of deficit reduction and sealing a significant, albeit controversial, deal with Republicans to extend Bush-era tax cuts in exchange for an extension of unemployment benefits. After his 2012 reelection, he made a brief and ineffective stab at bipartisan congressional outreach and then rammed through a landmark tax increase that hiked rates for families earning more than $400,000. So far, that’s been the highlight of his second term. There might be other, more modest, deals to be had in this year’s lame-duck session of Congress, scheduled to begin later this month, but housekeeping items are more likely to dominate: clearing a backlog of nominations, extending government funding, considering Obama’s pick for attorney general.
Still, Corker said the president has a “golden opportunity” because some Republicans, like himself, are eager to prove that GOP control of both houses would create a more productive environment than the past four years of divided rule. “If he wants to leave a legacy of solving some of our nation’s issues, Tuesday could be the best thing that happens to him—if he has that attitude of wanting to do that and puts out the effort to make that happen,” Corker says.
But just as Republicans don’t trust him, neither Obama nor his top aides trust Republicans to work in good faith. Bringing in someone who could work well with congressional Republicans isn’t an idea that’s getting much traction in the West Wing, even though several people we interviewed suggested a big-splash hire—such as tapping former Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle for some get-it-done-on-the-Hill job. (It’s a long shot, we were told, not least of all because Daschle launched a new consulting firm just last week.)
A comeback of sorts is not an entirely crazy scenario: If there’s one thing Obama has proven as a politician, it’s that he does a lot better during a presidential election cycle than a midterm cycle, and the calendar is about to flip. Obama’s advisers (and a lot of other Democrats) believe Republican excess and the presence of a common enemy—an emboldened GOP leadership in both houses that won’t be able to resist the rightward pull of the Tea Party—will unite Democrats behind Obama in a (non-scandal-induced) version of the resurgence enjoyed by Bill Clinton.
“It is important to recognize in this election a tiny fraction of voters will vote in a handful of states that are terrible for the president,” the senior White House aide said. “There are like, two Americas—there is a midterm America and a presidential-election-year America. We would be making a big mistake, heading into a presidential election year where we are not on the ballot but our party is, to make a whole series of strategic decisions based on the politics of an electorate that will not exist two years from now.”
There’s more than a little truth to that argument: In 2014, embattled Democrats in the House, Senate and state houses could and did evade and bash their party’s leader. But in 2015 and 2016, Democrats with national aspirations, like Hillary Clinton, have to embrace Obama’s record if they hope to retain a Democratic Party core of voters who have stuck with Obama through the first-term battles and second-term disappointments.
Nevertheless, the mobilize-the-base philosophy that has defined Obama as the transcendent campaigner of his generation haunts his presidency, severely limiting his range of public support now, when he most needs to tap a wider reservoir of goodwill. Since the losses in 2010, when the Tea Party revolt redefined the game, Obama’s politics-and-metrics team has essentially conceded that he will never be able to capture anything approaching broad public support. At the start of his presidency, about 35 percent of Republicans and independents personally liked him and were willing to give him a chance. In 2014, that number is approaching the vanishing point, at around 10 percent.
The Obamaians call it the “low-ceiling/high-floor” phenomenon: With some fluctuation, Obama enjoys low-to-mid-40s support from the electorate (the Democratic base) and cast-iron mid-40s opposition from conservatives no matter what he does. In 2012, that reality catalyzed his campaign’s already robust voter mobilization efforts geared at maximizing turnout of his supporters, as opposed to selling Obama to an ever-shrinking middle of persuadable undecided voters.
But those numbers are now crushing his presidency, like the converging trash compactor walls in Star Wars, forcing him into a narrower political space than that occupied by presidents of the past. “We’ll never see 51 percent again, maybe not even 50,” predicted one of his former campaign aides.
If there’s a ray of hope—and this is the paradox of a late-stage 21st-century presidency—it’s that people will start ignoring him.
Veteran Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg says Obama’s secret weapon just might turn out to be Hillary Clinton—who could divert attention from the White House and allow him to attack multiple crises without the klieg-light scrutiny he has faced in the past. “Once Hillary becomes more important than Obama, the attention shifts,” says Greenberg, who helped advise Clinton’s husband. That’s a good thing, Greenberg argues, because Obama and his team have been so lousy about messaging what he believes to be a fundamentally competent and accomplished presidency. “I think there might be a shift to the job he’s doing versus what he’s saying about the job he’s doing. … That’s important because he’s demonstrably failed on communicating about his economic plans and on his health care reforms and on his environmental record—everything really,” Greenberg says. Scathingly, he concludes: “No one knows about any of it. … There is no part of that he has been successful at.”
So will he fire anybody? And can he still get anybody worth hiring to work for him? Already anticipating a bad election night, many Democrats and the TV pundit class have begun howling for a West Wing housecleaning, even if Obama shows no signs of doing so—though a Tuesday wipeout could change that thinking in a hurry.
For now, White House officials insist he won’t indulge in a ritual that they essentially equate to a sugar high for their critics, pleasing but fleeting. “That is not going to happen,” a senior administration official told us when asked if Obama was preparing a major staff shakeup. If anything the circle is tightening: Even central players like Axelrod, former White House senior adviser David Plouffe, Obama’s most trusted political adviser and Ex-Press Secretary Robert Gibbs—once the core of his team—have been talking to Obama less and less, and weren’t consulted on the new plan to pivot, according to a former administration official.
Yet the change is occurring whether Obama likes it or not. Many of the relatively few remaining stalwarts on the White House staff are exhausted, eager to resume normal lives and leaving. White House chief of staff Denis McDonough asked senior aides around Labor Day to tell him if they are going to stick around for the final two years, and he has been reaching out to possible replacements since then. Among those mentioned as likely departures are some of Obama’s closest aides: senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer and deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes. Senior counselor John Podesta, who committed to staying only a year and is expected to play a major role in Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign, is scheduled to leave after the elections as well.
A list of people most likely to replace the departed isn’t easy to draw up, not with the lure of a Clinton campaign, big cash in the private sector, the perception of insularity and resistance to outsiders and the run-of-the-mill reality that winding down a presidency is a thankless, enervating business. Over the summer, many West Wingers and Obama alums believed that the president’s former senior adviser David Plouffe, Obama’s closest political aide, was primed to return as chief of staff. Plouffe forcefully denied the rumor to anyone who asked—and recently took a highly compensated job as a senior executive with Uber, the on-demand car service.
“One of the problems with a White House late in the second term is you’re not getting the A team,” said Martha Joynt Kumar, a Towson University political science professor and expert on the presidency. “You have weak people in positions and a lot of pressures at the very end.”
White House officials acknowledged that attracting top talent will be a challenge, but they pointed to the return of Ron Klain, a former chief of staff to Vice President Joe Biden who is now Obama’s Ebola czar, as evidence that the president is still a draw. (Klain is eventually expected to move into the job held by Podesta or Pfeiffer, if he leaves.)
Yet even the Klain hire offers a glimpse into the dysfunction that hampers Obama as he heads into the homestretch. Klain, according to several current and former Obama insiders, was passed over twice for White House chief of staff because Obama wasn’t quite willing to admit him to the innermost circle of trust. For a brief period in early 2013, Klain had the inside track for the job over McDonough, but he was done in over concerns that he had leaked private conversations with the president to journalists—including an unflattering blow-by-blow of a 2012 debate prep session that appeared in Double Down by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin. (Klain and White House officials declined to comment for this story, but he has denied those charges to Obama’s staffers.)
Whatever his previous misgivings, Obama—at the urging of his former chief of staff Rahm Emanuel and others—decided that Klain was simply too talented (and necessary) to keep outside the building at this point.
But Democrats close to the White House argue that there need to be many more Klains, not just to replace empty slots, but also to restock Obama’s inner circle with the kind of fiery, assertive, contentious advisers who energized the presidency—and the president—during the first term.
As one former Obama aide said, “It’s good they are opening the process up, but isn’t it too little, too late?”
Glenn Thrush is senior staff writer at Politico Magazine.
Carrie Budoff Brown is senior White House reporter at Politico.
We hesitate to count our chickens before they hatch when it comes to the midterm results on Tuesday night, November 4th, but it’s never too early to start planning for the positive outcome we hope for and America deserves.
Additionally, by planning ahead, we feel that our message will help propel one or two more votes in the direction of conservatives. So the question is; what should Congress do when the Republicans/Conservatives control both houses come January 2015?
The first thing to recognize is that our federal government has been totally dysfunctional for almost six years, in large measure due to one man, the Majority Leader of the Senate. Therefore, the new Senate and House of Representatives must strive to remedy this wisely held conviction by immediately restoring regular order in the Senate and placing the most able in positions of Committee Leadership – not just by seniority in both houses.
There is a lot to repair, repeal, reconstruct, remove, and reconfigure but all efforts should be focused on recovery and restoration of American Exceptionalism, our stature across the globe, our safety at home, and our prosperity.
This is easy to say, but much harder to achieve because we will still have Obama in the Oval Office with his pen and his phone. Despite what should be a very positive outcome, we caution our Representatives and Senators not to fall into old traps, rather, we urge them to understand that it is conservative values that brought them to the dance – not the party first, America first.
There will be a power shift and the question to be answered is will Barack Obama shake up his own White House and Cabinet secretaries.
It seems many are slated to move on to other outside positions and one would need to watch where Deputy National Security Director Ben Rhodes may go as well as John Podesta as they and others could be tapped to join Hillary Clinton’s camp.
So while there is predictable White House changes on the horizon, America needs to be assertive in the quest to rebuild from the previous damage.
Our suggestions on how best they can succeed are certainly not all encompassing, but as we lay out below, each can have a great impact in the long road to recovery and how we get there with the impediments before us.
Twenty four issues rise to the top, and though there is a veto pen, each will drive the discourse of the people, not the politicians.
These are not listed by priority – some will be obvious as to level of priority:
1. – Pass legislation that clears all hurdles for the Keystone XL Pipeline – IMMEDIATELY!
If the President vetoes the bill, he will have to explain to America why. This is a theme you will find throughout our list.
2. – Pass legislation that stops ‘sequestration’ from further harming our military and national security.
Despite what you may think, sequestration was the idea of his administration, not House Republicans.
3. – Create another Select Committee to investigate the Veterans Affairs Administration.
This committee must be independent and populated by Veterans only. They will be given 120 days to draft changes that will be the underpinning of new legislation. The Obama Administration cannot be the investigative entity on one of its own debacles.
4. – Rewrite the rules and laws on government employee ethics to include criminal accountability to stop massive abuse of employment protections, especially people being placed on paid administrative leave.
5. – Audit the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice.
No longer should institutional liberalism be condoned or allowed on permanent hires. Lawyers now must pass liberal litmus tests by liberal organizations that are special interest groups and in many cases, communist leaning groups.
6. – Pass legislation that makes it unlawful to prevent law enforcement at the FBI, the DHA, and even the military from investigating any group based on religion.
Intentionally focusing upon, or looking the other way completely on any one religion will be not tolerated, nor is it constitutional. By expunging all reference to Islamic Terror, Jihad, or violence from training materials and investigations is tantamount to the state promoting one religion over another and impedes the first amendment.
7. – Repeal and replace ObamaCare and/or defund those areas that infringe on individual rights or benefits any lobby or special interest group. Make Obama veto individual items, or the whole of any bill changing ObamaCare.
8. – Audit the EPA – pass legislation that curtails any and all regulatory authority in specificity. No longer should the EPA and its leftist cronies enact legislation on issues that could not pass legislative processes.
9. – Force NATO to expel Turkey as a member by cutting off funding to NATO and/or do the same to the UN.
10. – Audit sanctions and waivers of sanctions on all foreign states, entities, and individuals. Pass legislation that makes it unlawful for the President to issue waivers on sanctions as passed in the Senate, or originated in the House. In some cases, he may already being doing this unconstitutionally and was ignored in Harry Reid’s Senate.
11. – Force the President to exact the release of all American citizens held in foreign custody of any sort by cutting of funding and aid to any entity or nation.
12. – Place sanctions on Mexico for aiding and abetting the ability for any person to cross the border illegally.
13. – Terminate the free visa program. Mandate that all visitors from these nations register with the State Department within 14 days or face arrest and deportation. They may apply for a visa only during the 30 days after a hearing.
14. – Suspend the foreign student visa programs for a minimum of two years and rescind all existing student visas making them expire on the last day of the current classes in which they are enrolled.
15. – Pass legislation that mandates all illegal aliens within the borders of the United States and its territories must register with the DHS in each state within 90 days. Each will receive an identification card that prevents registering to vote; obtain a driver’s license, or any other act upon which a citizen must obtain permission from the federal, state, and local governments.
Those found to be in the United States after that period without registration shall immediately be taken into custody and confined, and then summarily deported forthwith.
Block any Executive action on amnesty to existing illegal aliens.
16. – Terminate Common Core and pass legislation dismantling the Department of Education.
17. – Repatriate Dollars. Pass legislation that requires all funds held by American citizens and corporations in foreign countries be repatriated to the United States without penalties. This shall be coupled with an act that reduces the corporate tax rate to one commensurate with competition globally.
18. – Create a select committee charged with establishing a fair tax system in six months that will replace the income tax system and thus make it possible to dismantle the IRS.
19. – Cutoff all funding to Planned Parenthood.
20. – Immediately call for the cessation of all talks with Iran regarding its nuclear programs and pass legislation that reinstates all sanctions and adds new ones.
21. – Pass a resolution that calls for the complete cessation of the pursuit of a ‘two-state solution’ between Israel and the terrorist enemies at or within her borders.
22. – Audit the Bureau of Land Management and produce a report to the citizens of all states on the ownership status and use of all federal buildings, lands, and any other holding within each state. Pass subsequent legislation to sell all unneeded property, and equipment to the private sector with a two-year moratorium of any sale to a foreign entity.
23. – Pass legislation that expressly outlaws the transfer of any Guantanamo Bay detainee until each has been tried by a military commission.
24. – Pass legislation that begins the rebuilding of NASA after a complete audit and reorganization study has been completed.
This list is by no means complete and could be expanded. Also, the methods and ends of each can be adapted in other fashions, but in any case, each of these subjects can change the dialogue leading into 2016. The foremost objective is to take back the initiative, return the discourse to topics of the people, not the party establishment, especially that of the Democratic Party, Obama, and Hillary Clinton.
No longer can we allow the media to pick our priorities as a nation, nor our candidates. The issues must drive the day, and leadership, like cream, will rise to the top. Establishment politics must now become the next battle to wage to return control of our government to the people, as Americans First. This applies to the manner in which new leadership is chosen in Congress and we must back those who place us first, and party far down the line of priorities.
Scott W. Winchell contributed to, edited, and posted this article.
Editor’s Note – It is now official, Iran is Obama’s legacy goal for his second term just as ObamaCare was his first term legacy item. How do we know this? Ben Rhodes, a White House advisor tells us so in the article below. This may be new to most of the country, but it has been a theme of many of SUA’s Research Analyst, Denise Simon’s for a long time.
Her most recent article: “Iran Wins, the World Loses – Thanks Mr. Obama” on the subject and is one in a long series of articles pointing out the true goals of the Obama Administration on a nuclear Iran and the region. Please read that article and the following:
The Coming Détente with Iran
Column: Deputy National Security Adviser: Iran Deal ‘Is Healthcare For Us’
Deputy National Security Adviser and MFA in creative writing Ben Rhodes likened an Iranian nuclear deal to Obamacare in a talk to progressive activists last January, according to audio obtained by theWashington Free Beacon.
The remarks, made at a since-discontinued regular meeting of White House personnel and representatives of liberal interest groups, reveal the importance of a rapprochement with Iran to President Obama, who is looking to establish his legacy as his presidency enters its lame-duck phase.
“Bottom line is, this is the best opportunity we’ve had to resolve the Iranian issue diplomatically, certainly since President Obama came to office, and probably since the beginning of the Iraq war,” Rhodes said. “So no small opportunity, it’s a big deal. This is probably the biggest thing President Obama will do in his second term on foreign policy. This is healthcare for us, just to put it in context.”
Rhodes also said the White House wants to avoid congressional scrutiny of any deal.
“We’re already kind of thinking through, how do we structure a deal so we don’t necessarily require legislative action right away,” Rhodes said. “And there are ways to do that.”
That is similar to what an unnamed senior administration official told David Sanger of the New York Times last week for a piece headlined “Obama Sees an Iran Deal That Could Avoid Congress”: “We wouldn’t seek congressional legislation in any comprehensive agreement for years.”
The interim deal with Iran struck in November 2013, in which the administration traded sanctions relief worth billions of dollars for promises to limit nuclear fuel production, was extended in July and is now scheduled to lapse on November 24.
And I am going to express fear. Fear that the chances of some sort of dangerous and misguided détente with Iran are high, and that they increase if Republicans capture the Senate and improve their majority in the House. Fear that the worse things get for Obama at home, the better the odds that he will hand the keys of the Middle East to Ayatollah Khamenei.
Fear that Obama sees an Iran deal not just as health care reform for the second term, but as his version of George W. Bush’s surge: a Hail Mary pass thrown in the fourth quarter in a long-shot attempt to salvage a legacy.
Bush ordered the surge despite having just lost an election. Obama is on the verge of losing another. And Obama will be no different from Bush in the pursuit of his desired ends.
Iran is Obama’s Iraq. It occupies the same place in the thinking of his administration that Iraq held in his predecessor’s. The desire for détente with Iran, for comity and diplomatic accord between longtime enemies, for a new Middle East in which security is left to regional stakeholders, and Shiite and Sunni alike see the United States as “evenhanded” in its treatment of Israelis and Palestinians, holds immense sway over the alliance of progressives and realists that conduct American foreign policy. It has for a decade.
“To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent,” President Obama said in his first Inaugural Address, “know that you are on the wrong side of history, but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.”
He might as well have said it in Farsi.
Can’t you just see Obama and Jarrett, kicking back after a few glasses of Bordeaux at Restaurant Helen, rhapsodizing over the president’s unique perspective on the global south, quoting lines fromArgo, visualizing the day he makes the first presidential visit to Tehran since Carter? For six years the White House has been careful not to provide the Iranians with any reason to reject negotiations, to prevent his fantasy from becoming real. To the contrary: It has been solicitous of Iran and Syria, in a demonstration of its willingness to address their grievances.
That is why Democrats called Bashar al-Assad a reformer, why Obama remained silent during the 2009 protests over Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s rigged election, why the State Department doesn’t include human rights or ballistic missiles in the scope of its negotiations with Iran. It is why Obama has resisted overthrowing Assad even after he crossed the red line of chemical weapons use, why he refers to the “Islamic republic of Iran,” bestowing legitimacy on the revolutionary regime, and why administration officials reject congressional proposals to reinstate sanctions should the negotiations with Iran fail.
These decisions are not made in light of the national security interests of the United States. They are made to keep alive President Obama’s dream of peace with Iran. And the purpose of these decisions isn’t to mollify American politicians. It’s to satisfy Iranian ones.
“In the Iranian system, you essentially have three broad categories, to generalize,” Rhodes said last January. “You’ve got people who generally want to do a negotiation—I don’t know if they’re called moderates, but there are certainly people on their side who are serious about a deal.
“Then you’ve got hardliners who don’t want a deal at all and feel threatened by what’s going on. Then you’ve got people in the middle who are basically invested in this because the sanctions are hurting a lot and they feel compelled to do it. And they would do a deal in order to get one.”
According to Rhodes’ logic, any move by the Americans that strengthens the hardliners at the expense of the other two groups decreases the chances of a deal. Our foreign policy is left hamstrung, in a vain and counterproductive and quite likely futile attempt to put Obama in the history books as the man who reestablished ties between the United States and Iran.
A Republican Congress would not only find itself ignored by the White House. It would find itself powerless to stop détente. The Democratic Congress voted repeatedly for timelines for withdrawal from Iraq. Bush vetoed them. Obama would do the same.
But there is one x-factor: Supreme leader Ayatollah Khamenei, whose anti-Americanism is as deep as his Shiite radicalism. He has thwarted the ambitions of past American presidents who hoped to reconcile our two nations. There is no reason to assume he has had a change of heart. He is as aware as anyone of the president’s waning political fortunes.
Repudiated, isolated, ineffective, stymied, Obama cannot persuade the Iranians of the strength of the American position. So he will move as far as he can in the direction of the Iranian one. Unable to make Iran pro-American, he will settle for making America pro-Iranian. It is part of his dismal, pathetic, ill considered, shortsighted, and injurious “legacy.”
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