By Christopher Massie Wednesday, December 8, 2010
“Lame-duck”: what an interesting moniker for a period of time referring to the exiting of one ruling Congressional Party and the ushering in of another. Conjuring up visions of caricatures quacking about with their bill set askew by a rifleman’s trusty shot, the term in reality is meant to refer to ducks being too weak or feeble to keep pace with their own flock, thus rendering themselves susceptible to attack by lurking prey.
Having been first applied to the United States Congress sometime in the 19th century, the term was a label appropriately applied to politicians too broken down to deserve the time of day; these scallywags rightly scorned and receiving the boot, never to cloud the congressional floor again.
Lame-duck sessions are a time for the People’s vote ~ the word of the majority ~ to be heard. This current session, having begun on the heels of the November congressional elections ~ an election that resulted in a shellacking of the Obama secular-socialist agenda and all in the White House in favor of same ~ removed from power many of the entrenched progressives that had ruled the House since 2006. Attempting also to replace the ruinous cancer eating away at the Senate, voters pulled levers and penciled in ovals across the nation in their attempts to secure a Conservative majority across the breadth of Congress. And while the taking of the House was not quite matched with a similar victory in the Senate, voter’s angst had been delivered: THIS is the change we want NOW, Obama ~ you had your shot, now get out of the way!
Eerily, however, days before the People’s voice trumpeted through the halls of Congress, national audiences were subjected to fortuitous scenes the likes of which sent freezing chills through the bones of die-hard Reagan Conservatives. Seemingly speaking on behalf of the very voters who secured his place in the sun, Republican Leader John Boehner, in a moment of excruciating thoughtlessness, stood before the American people in October and threatened to compromise with the very administration the majority of Americans had sent him and his party to stop dead in its tracks. From the White House lawn his words would be spoken; echoed again on prime time television. Boehner was firmly rebuked by the most outspoken leaders of the Conservative locomotive ~ a train destined to bring about a new era so desperately desired by a nation weary of big government takeover of their lives.
Boehner quickly turned an about face, promising “no compromise” day after day to any breathing being within his range who may have been holding a microphone. The stunned and appalled Constitutional Conservatives took him for his word ~ warily ~ and the movement churned onward. But those in the circle of truth, the hard-core right-wingers whose guts had been torn out by previous catastrophes leveled upon Conservatives by the moderate elites, held in their minds the very real possibility that this man ~ this soon to be Majority Leader (if elections panned out as planned) ~ could quite possibly be their nightmare in waiting.
Soon after the elections of November 2, 2010, the gut-wrenching truths began to unfold. The first sign of business as usual came as Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) announced her decision to run for the #4 spot in the Republican Party, the GOP Conference Chair. Bachmann, a long-established Tea Party favorite, staunch Constitutional Conservative, and anti-establishment, anti-old boys’ network politician announced her decision to run just one day after being reelected to her congressional seat in Minnesota. Then-current Chairman Mike Pence of Indiana had announced his planned resignation ~ presumably to enter the 2012 GOP presidential pool ~ and, along with others, Bachmann entered the race for his vacated seat. And that’s when things became disturbingly convoluted ~ and quite obviously “business as usual”.
The players in this first Lame-Duck debacle include faces familiar and not so well-known; with all participants being quite well acquainted with Bachmann’s outstanding ~ and outspoken ~ uber-Conservative past. Bachmann has pulled no punches in her support of religious tolerance and the support given to the states by the Constitution in establishing the teaching of courses on Christianity in schools, for example. Other examples of Bachmann’s Conservatism include her position against George W Bush’s “New Way Forward”, a stance that aligned her WITH many other far-right Republicans, albeit AGAINST Moderates in the old boys’ network ~ the very “boys” that have poisoned the Party since the end of the Reagan years. And it would be Bachmann’s aligning against those old boys that would cement her demise in her run up for the #4 seat.
Mike Pence was first elected Party Chairman in 2008, having gained the position on the strength of mentor and close friend John Boehner. Another politician in the picture at that time, Jeb Hensarling of Texas, also running for the seat, was encouraged to acquiesce to Pence by Boehner; instructed to wait in the wings for two years until “his turn” came due. The happy triumvirate satisfied with their agreement, Hensarling continued with his work for Texas, Pence took over as Party Chairman, and Boehner resumed duties as usual. Fast forward to 2010, the rise of the Tea Party, Mama Grizzlies, radical secular-socialists in power throughout Congress, a mad-as-hell-and-we-aren’t-going-to-take-it-any-more voting majority, and the GOP sweeps into power ~ Boehner and Co. take center stage!
November 3, 2010, Bachmann announced her bid for the #4 spot as vacated by Pence ~ a seat at the big boys’ table already “promised” to Hensarling by Boehner back in 2008. And not only did Bachmann throw her hat in the ring, so too did another Tea Party favorite (and Mama Grizzly in training) Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee. Boehner, quite obviously, has a situation on his hands. However, rather than allow the process to run its course, rather than stand by his tear-filled promises of November 2 to bring about the rebirth of true Conservatism as “We the People” had charged him by the vote to enact, Boehner reverted ~ just hours after wiping crocodile tears from his well tanned cheeks ~ to tactics born from years of elitism.
By November 9, Boehner would falsely position Hensarling as a “Tea Party Conservative”, essentially erasing Bachmann’s work for the movement by positioning a Texas moderate as “more Catholic than the Pope”. Following that, Boehner went further by brokering back room deals with Ms. Blackburn of Tennessee that found her bowing out days after announcing her bid for the Chairmanship ~ throwing her endorsement to Hensarling. Finally, in the most heinous act of backstabbing, Boehner cajoled a recipient of Tea Party backing into endorsing Hensarling over Bachmann ~ a politician whose son’s recent election was a direct result of both Sarah Palin’s and Michele Bachmann’s endorsements: Rand Paul. Rand and Ron Paul stood shoulder to shoulder as Ron, on November 9, only 6 days after the Tea Party elected Rand to Congress, guillotined one of the most visible members of that movement in the United States. On November 10, 2010, Bachmann ceded defeat, endorsing Hensarling for the Chairmanship.
Boehner, Pence, Hensarling, Rand Paul, and Ron Paul had their man; and their #4 spot in the GOP was secured. This was the first Lame-Duck nightmare of more to come. And this was NOT what we voted for!
One would suppose that any attempt to seize the blood-letting that best describes the Obama spending spree of the last couple of years would be viewed as conservative by even the most right-wing of the voting public. Considering all the roads to nowhere, the trillion dollar “stimulus” packages, the “shovel ready” grant packages, the aid for rubber room constituents in Leftist voting states and countless other debt mounting measures enacted by the three stooges in charge, eyeing Boehner and Co. positing an Earmark Moratorium came like a breath of fresh air to a canary recently escaped from the proverbial coal mine. Caveat emptor, without full support from a majority of voting Republicans ~ GOP-ers addicted to the government hand-outs ~ the “moratorium” was doomed to fail. And lest anyone forget, two keys point are worth noting on the glorious (now failed) earmark moratorium. And both lay at the feet of the Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.
First, it is critically important to note McConnell’s vernacular on the issue. Quoting McConnell from the Senate floor: “There is simply no doubt that the abuse of this practice has caused Americans to view it as a symbol of the waste and the out-of-control spending that every Republican in Congress is determined to fight.” Interesting. Note that McConnell attacked THE ABUSE of earmarks, not the earmarks, per se. And while this is all water under the bridge anyway ~ seeing now that the moratorium went down in flames last week ~ one should also note that the Holy McConnell ceded to the ban for only one year. He did NOT align with his Party members for a total ban ~ not to mention the Moderates in his party who voted for a two year moratorium.
Again, this shoddy performance by the RINO McConnell is a mute point, the moratorium is DOA. And truth be told, it was a mere dog-and-pony show by the Republicans to begin. Boehner and Co. knew from the on-set that representatives addicted to alternative schools for minorities, health clinics, METRO programs and more ~ all of which are funded by the earmark program ~ would never be on board for a cash-cow killing ban on their favorite form of money printing. Additionally considering the sheer power and brute force of the Appropriations Committees and voters understand the reality now being served, as witnessed in the failure of the moratorium ban. Boehner, McConnell and DeMint may have waved a flag of Conservative solidarity ~ to appease the Tea Party voters who elected the Young Turks to office who will be charged with the task of running the old boys’ laundry to be pressed ~ but that particular flag was a once-up-the-pole. True Conservatives should have seen the pandering; if not then, then certainly now.
DeMint, McConnell and Boehner pulled another fast one in the name of the Revolution; knowing full well it was a game of smoke and mirrors. This was the second Lame-Duck nightmare with more to come. And this was NOT what we voted for!
As if those were not enough ~ in less than 100 days mind you ~ Boehner’s true colors are back; in full Technicolor, for the world to see. In the days of the Stamp Act, Patriots would be stoning the White House!
“Compromise”. “Compromise”?! Allow the Tea Party Patriots a moment to center their gravity while positioning themselves atop the nearest table, please. The Tea Party movement was established upon the principles of lower taxes, smaller government, state’s rights and the notion that the United States of America is, factually, the most Exceptional nation on Earth. Note, Senators, that taxation ~ and all those poisons tied hand-in-hand with overt taxation: government spending, out of control, wasteful pork-barrel earmarks, illegal or suspect campaign funding or donations, and more ~ is first and foremost on the minds of Tea Party members.
The politicians elected by the Tea Party ~ those very same newly elected officials now positioned to support the GOP currently in place who so desperately required reinforcements ~ were sent to D.C. to eliminate tax increases, PERMANENTLY. The Tea Party did NOT send reinforcements to the White House so you could “negotiate”, “compromise”, or otherwise “kowtow” to Obama, Reid, or any other of the progressives who have consistently force fed this nation a steady 24 month diet of Socialism, race baiting, class warfare, ruinous policy implementation, ally destroying rhetoric, anti-Christianity posturing, overt coddling of the enemy and big government take-over of our nation.
“We the People” voted for the END of Obama ~ period! We voted for the END of tax hikes ~ period! We voted to REPEAL Obama-care ~ period! At no time, and on no flag waved, did We EVER offer the word or symbol for “compromise” ~ period!
This “compromise” now being painted for the voters to accept is unacceptable! Boehner and Co. have stealthily hidden from the light of day a crucial aspect of the “New Tax Plan”. Tea Party Patriots the likes of Bachmann have seen the light; one wonders how many others have come out from the shadows, as well.
Tied to the extension of George W Bush-era tax relief efforts for ALL Americans (tax relief efforts aimed at spurring growth and stimulating an economy in need of jump-starting), as Boehner, McConnell and others in the current GOP Party posit an arrangement with the Leftists, is an Obama-favored extension of unemployment benefits for individuals collecting benefits now for an exorbitant period of time. Two issues are at stake here, both profoundly counter to the Conservative movement that was supposed to be taking effect subject to the “shellacking” this past November 2nd.
First, the Republicans have ceded to a mere two years of extension for the Bush-era tax relief efforts! No Conservative worth his salt would ever consider this viable. Consider the repercussions from voters on the left ~ Moderates included ~ should Obama have continued on in his classic manner; ignoring all pundits, prognosticators and allies alike towards an end of allowing ALL tax breaks to expire. Obama would have been committing political suicide the likes of which even he ~ the great narcissistic in charge himself ~ has never ventured possible. The GOP in charge had Obama precisely where they wanted him ~ and where the voters put him! And they waffled! The tax breaks should have been made permanent. But the GOP running the show failed.
Second, and far more dubious, is the fact that the Obama-posited extensions for the terminally unemployed ARE NOT FUNDED! The day this issue came to the congressional floor, McConnell, Boehner and Co. squawked of demands for funding, demanding that the $12 Billion required for financing the unemployment extension project be re-appropriated so as to not add further to the national deficit. So adamant were the Republicans ~ initially, while the public was watching more closely ~ that the Bill was rejected; just as it should have been. The voters sent a message: no more spending! It seemed, at least on that day, that the GOP had received the message.
Not so fast, dear Tea Party members! McConnell, Boehner, and the whole lot of ‘em have included this “little” Bill in the “New Tax Plan” ~ you know, the one they “compromised” on ~ with the secular-socialist, progressives. If passed, very much to the chagrin of true Conservatives in the Party such as Bachmann, this “New Tax Plan” will add BILLIONS in spending to the national debt while only TEMPORARILY easing taxes on all Americans until Obama decides it’s time to bring the issue up for argument again. Now if that’s “compromise”, who needs contention?!
This third in a disturbingly consistent series of Lame-Duck subversions by the GOP in place should send shock waves through the voters who worked so diligently to erect what they hoped would be a force for truth when they went to the polls in November of 2010.
Boehner, McConnell, DeMint, Hensarling and others have a lot of explaining to do!
And I trust that the Tea Party Caucus, Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin and the entire True Conservatives’ movement will continue forward as the one true voice of ~ and the ones truly listening to ~ We the People!
We may have drained the swamp partially, but “We the People” still have our work cut out for us towards the goal of resurrecting the City on the Hill!