Israel's Capitol – Romney says Jerusalem, Obama?

Editor’s Note – Obama and his administration have circumvented the Congress many times, yet many Presidents have done so. However, in these tumultuous times, after the “Arab Spring” leading to the Syrian Revolution, all on Israel’s borders, or a part of the consortium that plans to “shove Israel into the sea”, isn’t it time one Congressional Act was followed?

The 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act is one such act that should be a key to any President’s foreign policy – Jerusalem is the capitol of Israel. As Mitt Romney affirmed, the official policy of the United States is that Israel’s capitol is Jerusalem. However, Hillary Clinton and Obama just cannot stop undermining Israel, despite their rhetoric.

From the Blaze and Rick Richman:

Click on map to enlarge

They just can’t bring themselves to say that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, can they?

They can’t answer the question of where the capital is, or where Clinton will visit (although the answer to both questions is obvious), lest someone press them on whether Jerusalem is in Israel. Perhaps while she is there on July 16 or 17, Secretary Clinton will be asked if she still takes the position that even symbolically treating Jerusalem as Israel’s capital would jeopardize the non-existent peace process.

(…)

Three presidents – Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama – have signed a presidential waiver against moving the embassy to Jerusalem as required by the 1995 Jerusalem Embassy Act. The act also calls for Jerusalem to remain Israel’s undivided capital.

So while Clinton is visiting Paris, Tokyo, Ulaanbaatar, Hanoi, Vientiane, and Phnom Penh, will she be calling on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem?

Again, SUA asks why, why one of our most steadfast allies gets treated like the proverbial “red-headed step-child” of our foreign policy. It is time to align with Israel completely, not just in sound bites that have no meaning – just words that allow them to say they support Israel, yet we know underneath those vacuous words, they do not believe their own words.

Romney however – if we are to believe his words, is fore-square behind our ally, where is Hillary Clinton and Obama!

White House Differs with Romney on Jerusalem as Capital of Israel

By Fred Lucas – CNS News

(CNSNews.com) – In what marks a decisive difference in the presidential campaign, one day after Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney called Jerusalem the capital of Israel, the White House asserted that Romney’s position was different from that of the Obama administration.

“Our view is that that is a different position than this administration holds. It’s the view of this administration that the capital should be determined in final status negotiations between parties,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters Monday.

“I would remind you that that is the position that has been held by previous administrations both Democratic and Republican. So, if Mr. Romney disagrees with that position, he is also disagreeing with positions taken by previous presidents like Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan,” Earnest added.

On Thursday, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney struggled during the afternoon press briefing to answer what the capital of Israel was, insisting reporters already knew the administration’s policy and that the policy was not changed. Hours later he issued a written answer, stating it will be negotiated between Israel and the Palestinians.

On Sunday, Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, spoke from Jerusalem addressing the close relationship between the U.S. and Israel.

“It is a deeply moving experience to be in Jerusalem, the capital of Israel,” Romney said. “Our two nations are separated by more than 5,000 miles. But for an American abroad, you can’t get much closer to the ideals and convictions of my own country than you do in Israel.

“We’re part of the great fellowship of democracies. We speak the same language of freedom and justice, and the right of every person to live in peace. We serve the same cause and provoke the same hatreds in the same enemies of civilization,” he added.

On Thursday, IRN-USA Radio News reporter Connie Lawn asked Carney, “What city does this administration consider to be the capital of Israel – Jerusalem or Tel Aviv?”

Carney said, “I haven’t had that question in a while. Our position has not changed, Connie.”

The reporter followed, “What is the position? What’s the capital?”

Carney responded, “You know our position.”

Lawn said, “I don’t.”

Later on Thursday evening, Carney issued a written statement to answer the question.

“The status of Jerusalem is an issue that should be resolved in final status negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians,” Carney said in a written statement. “We continue to work with the parties to resolve this issue and others in a way that is just and fair, and respects the rights and aspirations of both Israelis and Palestinians.”

The statement mirrors the troubles that State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland had at a March 29 press briefing.

According to the official State Department transcript, a reporter asked Nuland, “Is it the view of the United States that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel, notwithstanding the question about the Embassy, the location of the U.S. Embassy?”

Nuland said, “We are not going to prejudge the outcome of those negotiations, including the final status of Jerusalem.”

The reporter said, “Does that mean that you do not regard Jerusalem as the capital of Israel?”

Nuland responded, “Jerusalem is a permanent status issue; it’s got to be resolved through negotiations.”

The reporter asked, “That seems to suggest that you do not regard Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Is that correct or not?”

Nuland responded, “I have just spoken to this issue –”

The reporter went on to ask, “You’ve spoken to the issue but didn’t answer the question, and I think there’s a lot of people out there who are interested in hearing a real answer and not saying – and not trying to duck and say that this has got to be resolved by negotiations between the two sides.” The reporter again asked, “What is the capital of Israel?”

Nuland said, “Our policy with regard to Jerusalem is it has to be solved through negotiations. That’s all I have to say on this issue.”

The reporter again asked, “What is the capital of Israel?”

Nuland answered, “Our Embassy, as you know, is located in Tel Aviv.”

The reporter responded, “So does that mean that you regard Tel Aviv as the capital of Israel?”

Nuland said, “The issue on Jerusalem has to be settled through negotiations.”

The Washington Free Beacon first reported in March that the State Department had quietly altered an official communication that originally referred to Israel and Jerusalem as separate entities.

Obama strong suit is Foreign Policy? Ask a Vet!

Editor’s Note – For some reason, Americans polled recently (Suspect all polls!) seem to think Obama is strongest in Foreign Policy. That may be because he is so weak elsewhere, but on its face, people think he has the experience, at least now he does, and that Romney does not have enough. It is sad, because those of us who follow the foreign press know that the rest of the world is actually laughing at us. Our press does not allow that news into the country – another reason Americans just do not know how bad it is.

Allies can no longer trust America because secrets were revealed, and that places others in great danger. Regardless of whether it was done for political gain or not, it hamstrung our foreign policy. Severely diminished trust leads to less respect as well. Its not what we think, its what the world thinks of why he did it!

Say what you will about George Bush, but he commanded and earned respect across the globe, he was feared, something Obama has not done. Now many say that Obama got the world to like us more because they hated Bush, but what actually occurred was diminished clout. He is easily manipulated, cajoled, and led by the nose. His words carry little clout in Europe, and Putin plays him like a fiddle. Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan even out plays Obama.

So, is it better to be liked or feared by the rest of the globe? Trusted and respected, or thought to be weak and naive? Again, its not what we think, its what word leaders think. Axelrod may help Obama sway many Americans opinions, and may get the votes, but our stature across the globe is now quite pathetic as compared to historic levels.

Liberals want to be liked, but we are not going to a picnic, we need them to fear us. You decide:

Obama is a sitting duck on leaks and vets

The two presidential candidates spoke to the Veterans of Foreign Wars this week. Developments that have followed suggest that the president is vulnerable on at least two big issues, both of which Mitt Romney raised.

Regarding leaks, in a lousy showing on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod declared that the president hadn’t leaked any national security secrets and that the president hadn’t authorized such leaks. But that’s an awfully narrow answer to a big and important question: Did someone in the White House leak sensitive intelligence?

At the VFW Romney said:

Whoever provided classified information to the media, seeking political advantage for the administration, must be exposed, dismissed, and punished. The time for stonewalling is over.

It is not enough to say the matter is being looked into, and leave it at that. When the issue is the political use of highly sensitive national security information, it is unacceptable to say, “We’ll report our findings after Election Day.”

Exactly who in the White House betrayed these secrets? Did a superior authorize it? These are things that Americans are entitled to know — and they are entitled to know right now. If the president believes — as he said last week — that the buck stops with him, then he owes all Americans a full and prompt accounting of the facts.

Axelrod’s indignant but limited denial confirms what we can tell from news reports: At least some of the most critical information had to have originated in the White House. The issue won’t go away. And if the Romney team wanted a “transparency” issue, it might beat the drum from now until November for a full accounting of the leaks.

The other issue that Romney latched upon was the sequestration cuts and the Department of Veterans Affairs specifically. Now a report tells us how vets are faring under this president:

Veterans returning home today join lines for disability payments much longer than those Obama called intolerable in 2008. Their chances of finding jobs in a bleak economy are worse than those of most other Americans. Veterans’ complaints of employment discrimination by the federal government have actually risen.

Veterans remain more likely to be homeless than the general population. The VA estimates more than 67,000 sleep in shelters and on the streets or are otherwise considered homeless, a figure that is only slightly better than in 2009.

And improved data collection reveals just how bad the problem of suicide is among veterans. According to new data Reuters obtained from the VA, a veteran within the VA healthcare system tries to commit suicide about once every half-hour, on average.

That is before Obama kicks out 100,000 of our troops to find work in the private sector. They can be expected to face a dreary job market. (“Unemployment among [Iraq and Afghanistan war vets] rose from 7.3 percent in 2008 to 12.1 percent in 2011, when the national average was 8.9 percent. For 18- to 24-year-old veterans, the rate was 30 percent last year, nearly double the 16.1 percent rate for non-veterans in that age group.”)

If Romney is smart, he’ll keep hammering these two issues. Obviously, the administration has no sufficient defense.

Obama trade deal usurps more power, breaks more promises

Editor’s Note – Once again the Obama administration is circumventing Congress and the American people. The ‘king’ keeps adding to his power, and if not for leaks, we may never have known. The Executive Branch grows again…

Here is the document that was leaked: Agreement Terms Document

Obama Trade Document Leaked, Revealing New Corporate Powers And Broken Campaign Promises

By Zach Carter – Huffington Post

WASHINGTON — A critical document from President Barack Obama’s free trade negotiations with eight Pacific nations was leaked online early Wednesday morning, revealing that the administration intends to bestow radical new political powers upon multinational corporations, contradicting prior promises.

The leaked document has been posted on the website of Public Citizen, a long-time critic of the administration’s trade objectives. The new leak follows substantial controversy surrounding the secrecy of the talks, in which some members of Congress have complained they are not being given the same access to trade documents that corporate officials receive.

Obama with the Pacific area leaders of the new free trade agreement

“The outrageous stuff in this leaked text may well be why U.S. trade officials have been so extremely secretive about these past two years of [trade] negotiations,” said Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch in a written statement.

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) has been so incensed by the lack of access as to introduce legislation requiring further disclosure. House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has gone so far as to leak a separate document from the talks on his website. Other Senators are considering writing a letter to Ron Kirk, the top trade negotiator under Obama, demanding more disclosure.

The newly leaked document is one of the most controversial of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact. It addresses a broad sweep of regulations governing international investment and reveals the Obama administration’s advocacy for policies that environmental activists, financial reform advocates and labor unions have long rejected for eroding key protections currently in domestic laws.

Under the agreement currently being advocated by the Obama administration, American corporations would continue to be subject to domestic laws and regulations on the environment, banking and other issues. But foreign corporations operating within the U.S. would be permitted to appeal key American legal or regulatory rulings to an international tribunal. That international tribunal would be granted the power to overrule American law and impose trade sanctions on the United States for failing to abide by its rulings.

The terms run contrary to campaign promises issued by Obama and the Democratic Party during the 2008 campaign.

“We will not negotiate bilateral trade agreements that stop the government from protecting the environment, food safety, or the health of its citizens; give greater rights to foreign investors than to U.S. investors; require the privatization of our vital public services; or prevent developing country governments from adopting humanitarian licensing policies to improve access to life-saving medications,” reads the campaign document.

Yet nearly all of those vows are violated by the leaked Trans-Pacific document. The one that is not contravened in the present document — regarding access to life-saving medication — is in conflict with a previously leaked document on intellectual property (IP) standards.

“Bush was better than Obama on this,” said Judit Rius, U.S. manager of Doctors Without Borders Access to Medicines Campaign, referring to the medication rules. “It’s pathetic, but it is what it is. The world’s upside-down.”

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative insists that while broad standards require many medical patents and IP rules that would increase the price of medications, the U.S. intends to work with countries involved in the Trans-Pacific talks to ensure that the agreement does not restrict access to life-saving drugs.

USTR was not immediately available to comment on the newly leaked investment chapter of the Trans-Pacific deal, and has previously stated that it cannot comment on the terms of an allegedly leaked document.

That statement is belied somewhat by recent American efforts in other international negotiations to establish controversial medical patents that grant companies long-term monopolies on life-saving medications. Those monopolies increase drug prices, which impede access to medications, particularly in developing nations. The World Health Organization and dozens of nonprofit public health groups have objected to the standards sought by the Obama administration. Two United Nations groups recently urged global governments not to agree to trade terms currently being advocated by the Obama administration, on the grounds that such rules would hurt public health.

Such foreign investment standards have also come under fire at home, from both conservative sovereignty purists and progressive activists for the potential to hamper domestic priorities implemented by democratically elected leaders. The North American Free Trade Agreement, passed by Congress in 1993, and a host of subsequent trade pacts granted corporations new powers that had previously been reserved for sovereign nations and that have allowed companies to sue nations directly over issues.

While the current trade deal could pose a challenge to American sovereignty, large corporations headquartered in the U.S. could potentially benefit from it by using the same terms to oppose the laws of foreign governments. If one of the eight Pacific nations involved in the talks passes a new rule to which an American firm objects, that U.S. company could take the country to court directly in international tribunals.

Public Citizen challenged the independence of these international tribunals, noting that “The tribunals would be staffed by private sector lawyers that rotate between acting as ‘judges’ and as advocates for the investors suing the governments,” according to the text of the agreement.

In early June, a tribunal at the World Bank agreed to hear a case involving similar foreign investment standards, in which El Salvador banned cyanide-based gold mining on the basis of objections from the Catholic Church and environmental activists. If the World Bank rules against El Salvador, it could overturn the nation’s domestic laws at the behest of a foreign corporation.

Speaking to the environmental concerns raised by the leaked document, Margrete Strand Rangnes, Labor and Trade Director for the Sierra Club, an environmental group said, “Our worst fears about the investment chapter have been confirmed by this leaked text … This investment chapter would severely undermine attempts to strengthen environmental law and policy.”

Basic public health and land-use rules would be subject to challenge before an international tribunal, as would bank regulations at capital levels that might be used to stymie bank runs or financial crises. The IMF has advocated the use of such capital controls, which would be prohibited under the current version of the leaked trade pact. Although several countries have proposed exceptions that would allow them to regulate speculative financial bets, the U.S. has resisted those proposals, according to Public Citizen.

Trans-Pacific negotiations have been taking place throughout the Obama presidency. The deal is strongly supported by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the top lobbying group for American corporations. Obama’s Republican opponent in the 2012 presidential elections, Mitt Romney, has urged the U.S. to finalize the deal as soon as possible.

This post has been updated to include comment from the Sierra Club.

ROMNEY, RUBIO, McCAIN and NATURAL BORN CITIZEN

By JB Williams – Jb.uspu@gmail.com

The recent release of my previous column titled Rubio Can Lock the Election for Obama resulted in numerous reader emails that demonstrate a continuing confusion over the indisputable definition and application of the term Natural Born Citizen. This follow up column is written to remove all confusion from the topic, once and for all.

Sadly, most of the people concerned with this topic believe they each know the truth, even though they do not agree on what the truth is. Most opinions are based upon second source or third hand information, most of it motivated by political agenda.

My objective is to establish through first source evidence and spread the truth, no matter who it helps or harms in the political arena. I have written on this subject extensively and my only loyalty here is to the truth, no matter who it serves.

The true definition of Natural Born Citizen

Simply stated, a Natural Born Citizen is a second (or more) generation citizen by birth right. None of the Founding Fathers were Natural Born Citizen as they all became 1st generation citizens the moment they created our nation. As a result, they had to exclude themselves from the NBC requirement, even though most of them were born on soil (Native Citizen), or none of them could have held the office of President.

The term Natural Born Citizen was borrowed from Vattel’s treatise The Law of Nations, based upon the unalienable rules of Natural Law. Most people understand and agree on this. Then, they begin cherry-picking their facts from there, in all cases, based upon their individual political agendas rather than a careful and complete study of the facts.

I direct you to four sections in particular…

The Law of Nations – Book 1 – Chapter 19 – Sections 212, 213, 214 and 215 – The true definition of NBC is given in these three sections.

§ 212. Citizens and natives (the section most people are familiar with) READ IN ENTIRETY PAYING CLOSE ATTENTION TO SECTIONS I HAVE HIGHLIGHTED.

“The citizens are the members of the civil society; bound to this society by certain duties, and subject to its authority, they equally participate in its advantages. The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens. As the society cannot exist and perpetuate itself otherwise than by the children of the citizens, those children naturally follow the condition of their fathers, and succeed to all their rights. The society is supposed to desire this, in consequence of what it owes to its own preservation; and it is presumed, as matter of course, that each citizen, on entering into society, reserves to his children the right of becoming members of it. The country of the fathers is therefore that of the children; and these become true citizens merely by their tacit consent. We shall soon see whether, on their coming to the years of discretion, they may renounce their right, and what they owe to the society in which they were born. I say, that, in order to be of the country, it is necessary that a person be born of a father who is a citizen; for, if he is born there of a foreigner, it will be only the place of his birth, and not his country.”

212 – Defines Natural Born Citizen as the natural offspring of a Citizen Father. Vattel explains this three times in this section. Just as all birthrights follow the blood of the father, so does natural rights of citizenship. This debunks the theory that “both parents” must be legal citizens and the time of their offspring birth. Only the Father confers Natural Born Citizenship.

§ 213. Inhabitants (Refers to situations like Rubio’s)

“The inhabitants, as distinguished from citizens, are foreigners, who are permitted to settle and stay in the country. Bound to the society by their residence, they are subject to the laws of the state while they reside in it; and they are obliged to defend it, because it grants them protection, though they do not participate in all the rights of citizens. They enjoy only the advantages which the law or custom gives them. The perpetual inhabitants are those who have received the right of perpetual residence. These are a kind of citizens of an inferior order, and are united to the society without participating in all its advantages. Their children follow the condition of their fathers; and, as the state has given to these the right of perpetual residence, their right passes to their posterity.”

Marco Rubio - Is he eligible?

213 addresses “citizen” and “inhabitants” – not Natural Born Citizens defined in 212. Rubio falls into this category as he was born in the U.S. – however, his parents (specifically his father) were legal citizens of Cuba at the time of Marco’s birth. Due to our 14th Amendment based upon this section from Vattel, Marco became an inhabitant at birth, and an “anchor baby citizen” via our current immigration and naturalization laws. But because his Father was a legal citizen of Cuba, his father conferred natural citizenship right to Cuba upon Marco’s birth. It is on this basis that Marco Rubio is NOT a Natural Barn Citizen of the United States.

§ 214. Naturalization (58) (confirms everything I just told you about Rubio)

“A nation, or the sovereign who represents it, may grant to a foreigner the quality of citizen, by admitting him into the body of the political society. This is called naturalization. There are some states in which the sovereign cannot grant to a foreigner all the rights of citizens, — for example, that of holding public offices — and where, consequently, he has the power of granting only an imperfect naturalization. It is here a regulation of the fundamental law, which limits the power of the prince. In other states, as in England and Poland, the prince cannot naturalize a single person, without the concurrence of the nation, represented by its deputies. Finally, there are states, as, for instance, England, where the single circumstance of being born in the country naturalizes the children of a foreigner.”

215 answers the question of soil, or Native Born versus Natural Born

§ 215. Children of citizens born in a foreign country (NO born on soil requirement)

“It is asked whether the children born of citizens in a foreign country are citizens? The laws have decided this question in several countries, and their regulations must be followed. (59) By the law of nature alone, children follow the condition of their fathers, and enter into all their rights (§ 212); the place of birth produces no change in this particular, and cannot, of itself, furnish any reason for taking from a child what nature has given him; I say “of itself,” for, civil or political laws may, for particular reasons, ordain otherwise. But I suppose that the father has not entirely quitted his country in order to settle elsewhere. If he has fixed his abode in a foreign country, he is become a member of another society, at least as a perpetual inhabitant; and his children will be members of it also.”

This pertains to John McCain, who was born in Panama due to his father’s military deployment. As Vattel explains in section 215, where a person is born cannot take away the Natural Born Birthright that passes via Natural Law from Father to Son. Because John McCain’s Father was indeed a well-known legal citizen of the United States at the time of John’s birth, no matter where the birth took place, Natural Born Citizenship passed from John’s Father to John at birth. John McCain is a Natural Born Citizen of the United States, no matter what else people think about John McCain.

In this regard, the United States Senate got it exactly right in their 99-0 Sen. Res. 511 clearing John McCain to pursue the office of President in 2008. Using the exact same definition used to clear John McCain, Barack Hussein Obama and Marco Rubio would fail the test.

Just in case there is any doubt concerning McCain, Vattel goes further on the McCain circumstance in section 217

§ 217. Children born in the armies of the state (John McCain)

“For the same reasons also, children born out of the country, in the armies of the state, or in the house of its minister at a foreign court, are reputed born in the country; for a citizen who is absent with his family, on the service of the state, but still dependent on it, and subject to its jurisdiction, cannot be considered as having quitted its territory.

One does not quit citizenship rights when deployed abroad by our government. In fact, even if a soldier deployed abroad sires a child, with a foreign mother, that child is still a Natural Born Citizen of the USA as those rights pass from Father to child at birth.

Are you with me so far? Rubio is NOT a Natural Born Citizen of the USA, John McCain is…..right? Barack Obama is NOT a Natural Born Citizen no matter whether he was born in Hawaii or Kenya…. right?

Now for Romney….

According to all available records on Romney, his Grandfather was a legal citizen of the United States who became an “inhabitant” of Mexico long before Mitt’s birth. Mitt’s father was born in Mexico, the natural offspring of a legal US citizen living in Mexico. Remember from above that soil changes nothing. According to all evidence available at present, Mitt’s father was born a Natural Born Citizen of the United States, even though his parents were “inhabitants” of Mexico at the time.

Mitt’s Father later returned to the United States and became Governor of Michigan, something a non-citizen could not do. Mitt was born in Michigan, the natural offspring of a legal citizen Father, making Mitt a Natural Born Citizen of the United States at birth.

So, McCain and Romney both pass the NBC test according to Vattel and The Law of Nations. Rubio, Obama and others like Jindal DO NOT pass the test.

Before you spread any more false information regarding the subject, I welcome any challenge you want to raise to any of the information provided here. If it is truth you seek, you now have the truth. If you seek something else, the truth will not serve that agenda.

Last, if Marco Rubio truly wants to serve this country in the best way possible, he should immediately pronounce himself “ineligible” for the offices of President and Vice President, which would immediately turn all focus upon the current Fraud-in-Chief, Barack Hussein Obama, and secure the defeat of Obama’s international assault on the United States of America.

If Rubio does not do this, he is not what many Tea Party supporters think he is…

"A-load-of-you-know-what" – Class, and dignity?

Editor’s Note – Perhaps one of the more egregious ways to demean the Oval Office is to talk like a street thug while wars loom on the horizon, the economy and personal worth are at a nadir, jobs are non-existent, world finances are at the brink of collapse, and our troops in Afghanistan are being killed by those pesky Taliban and a thankless Hamid Karzai doesn’t apolgize, Obama does.

Class is the hallmark of the Oval Office, yet we have a Chicago thug, a community organizer demeaning our processes while apologizing overseas. That is not class, and dignity is not a needed asset apparently. Decorum is gone and ‘street cred’ is in! Are you proud?

Obama speaks to the UAW - Chicago politics

President Obama Suggests Romney Shoveling ‘A Load of You-Know-What’

Yahoo News

By Jake Tapper and Mary Bruce

As Michigan Republicans headed to the polls Tuesday morning,President Obama delivered an aggressive defense of the bailout of the auto industry and his presidency in general, harshly criticizingGOP frontrunner Mitt Romney – though he never mentioned him by name.

“I’ve got to admit, it’s been funny to watch some of these folks completely try to rewrite history now that you’re back on your feet,” the president said to a raucous crowd at the United Auto Workers Convention. “The same folks who said if we went forward with our plan to rescue Detroit, ‘you can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye.'”

In a November 2008 New York Times op-ed titled ” Let Detroit Go Bankrupt,” Romney wrote, “If General Motors, Ford andChrysler get the bailout that their chief executives asked for yesterday, you can kiss the American automotive industry goodbye. It won’t go overnight, but its demise will be virtually guaranteed.”

In a boisterous, excited tone, President Obama continued, criticizing Republicans who said “the workers made out like bandits in all of this; that saving the American auto industry was just about paying back unions. Really? I mean, even by the standards of this town, that’s a load of you-know-what.”

Campaigning in Grand Rapids, Mich., earlier this month, Romney said the bailout was ” crony capitalism ,” arguing that President Obama had “gotten hundreds of millions of dollars from labor bosses for his campaign. And so he’s paying them back in every way he knows how. One way of course was giving General Motors and Chrysler to the UAW.”

As part of the GM bailout’s complex arrangements, a UAW-owned trust was given a 17.5 percent ownership stake the car company (now roughly 10% as stock has been sold) in exchange for various concessions including the union taking responsibility for health care costs of retirees. The president today argued that with reduced hours and pay, some worker rights relinquished, and roughly 700,000 auto worker retirees seeing a reduction in health care benefits, workers indeed gave things up in the bailout.

The visit was an “official” presidential event, not campaign-related, but the odd dynamic when the president took the stage to chants of “Four More Years!” after which a labor official told the crowd, “This is not a political event.”

That seemed a questionable assertion, given how the president continually referenced Romney, defending how his moves to save GM and Chrysler demanded change and accountability. “The other option we had was to do nothing, and allow these companies to fail,” the president said. “In fact, some politicians said we should. Some even said we should ‘let Detroit go bankrupt'” – another reference to Romney’s New York Times op-ed.

The crowd booed at that reference.

“You remember that?” the president said to the crowd that clearly did. “You know him?”

“Think about what that choice would have meant for this country,” the president said. “If we had turned our backs on you; if America had thrown in the towel; GM and Chrysler had gone under.”

The president used the event to not only reject Republicans referring to labor unions as a special interest group, he painted his support of the industry as part and parcel of his campaign platform: “”This notion that we should have let the auto industry die; that we should pursue anti-worker policies in hopes unions like yours will buckle and unravel – that’s part of that same old you’re-on-your-own philosophy that says we should just leave everybody to fend for themselves….We can’t afford to go back. Not now….The economy is getting stronger. The recovery is speeding up. And now is the time to keep our foot on the gas.”

Without directly asking the UAW workers to help his re-election campaign he said, “I’ll promise you this: as long as you’ve got an ounce of fight left in you, I’ll have a ton of fight left in me.”