Until an odd thing happened; despite leadership’s attempts to give in to Obama’s every demand, rank and file House Republicans, and even a few in the Senate, defied their leadership and welcomed a battle over Obama’s latest red line; namely, the budget. Now, as happened with his Syrian red line, Obama has an unexpected fight on his hands, and rather than the thoughtful, deliberative actions of a man who stands on the moral high ground, Obama has revealed himself as a petty, vindictive tyrant, desperate to maintain the illusion that Big Government is essential to our lives.
However, like with the sequester, it seems that the only people who’ve noticed that the government is shut down is the political class, the media and the 800,000 or so “non-essential” federal employees that are now sitting at home (including 1,265 White House staffers!).
Though the media has universally portrayed this as the fault of intransigent Republicans (indeed, a recent analysis of prime-time news stories in the mainstream media showed 21 stories blamed Republicans, and none blamed Democrats), the pressure is on Obama and the Democrats to make true the claims of the shutdown being a disaster. Otherwise, the American people might wonder why we keep racking up trillion dollar annual deficits, yet we can shut down almost half of government and the worst thing that happens is some parks close.
So, as we listen to the hyper-partisan rhetoric of Obama, and as we contemplate Pelosi’s claim that there can be no more cuts to government spending because “the cupboard is bare,” let’s have ourselves a reality check …
First of all, as to the blame for the government shutdown, that lies squarely at the feet of Obama and the Democrats. Obama has said repeatedly that he will not, under any circumstances, negotiate with Republicans over the budget or the debt ceiling. Republicans have passed numerous bills that would fund every part of government except Obamacare, but that is the Holy Grail for Democrats and they would rather shut government down than let Obamacare go unfunded. Democrats say Republicans should give up their fight because Obama won re-election, which shows the people embraced Obamacare. You know who else won re-election? An overwhelming majority of House Republicans, who all campaigned on repealing Obamacare.
Democrats refuse to allow any changes to Obamacare put forth by Republicans, yet the law has been changed numerous times already, including repeal of the 1099 reporting provision, repeal of the CLASS Act, and defunding of the CO-OP provision. That does not even include the one-year delay in compliance with the employer mandate, an action taken unilaterally by Obama despite it being a blatantly unconstitutional power grab on his part. So the law is not sacred, even to Democrats.
Furthermore, the obvious crippling effect it has had on economic growth and job creation, combined with the loss of insurance coverage for hundreds of thousands of employees in the last month alone, combined with the disastrous rollout of the exchanges last week, is all the more reason to delay or repeal the law.
But Democrats will have none of it, and Republicans have finally found a spine, and thus we are at an impasse with no end in sight. But with each passing day, Obama is determined to make the shutdown as painful as possible on the American people.
That is not supposition, that is a fact. As reported in the Washington Times, a ranger with the National Park Service angrily admitted they were ordered “to make life as difficult for people as we can. It’s disgusting.” The ranger is referring to the fact that the Obama White House has deployed rangers with instructions to close off streets and blockade national monuments so visitors can’t get to them. The White House tried to shut down Mount Vernon, the home of George Washington, before they were reminded that it is privately owned, funded and maintained by the Mount Vernon Ladies Association. In an act of pure hatefulness, Obama had the rangers close off the parking lot, which is jointly owned by the MVLA and the federal government.
In maybe the most notorious confrontation to date, Obama had the Park Service barricade the WWII Memorial, which is normally open 24 hours a day, usually without guards. Requests for an exception for Honor Flights (a program that brings aged WWII veterans to see, before they die, the memorial erected in their honor) were made, but were rebuffed, with the White House liaison telling them “It’s a government shutdown, what do you expect?”
Think about that … Obama went out of his way to erect barricades just to keep 80- and 90-year-old WWII veterans from visiting their memorial! He sent more men to bar octogenarian heroes from their memorial than he sent to save Americans at Benghazi! Embarrassingly for Obama, these good and brave men climbed over and around the barricades, and when Obama’s lackeys threatened them with arrest, they laughed in his face. That should not be surprising though. If this pathetic, weasely excuse for a president can’t stand up to Syria’s Assad or Russia’s Putin, there is no way he is going to win a battle with the men that stormed the beaches at Normandy and defeated Hitler.
Now, if all of this has not convinced you that this is an attempt by Democrats to cement their reckless policies and crush Republican opposition once and for all, then consider these other facts:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, when asked by a reporter why he was refusing to pass a House Republican bill that would fund the National Institute for Health, and in doing so help kids with cancer, asked why he should care about a kid with cancer when he had federal employees sitting at home.
Obama closed national parks and memorials, but his golf course at Camp David is fully staffed. He has gone out of his way to hurt the American people, not only closing national parks, but purposely trying to scare the stock market into a crash (it didn’t work).
Why does Obama, and the Democrats, refuse to negotiate over a law that a majority of Americans hate? Why are they not scared of an extended government shutdown? Because, as reported by the Wall Street Journal, a senior Obama administration official smugly declared, “We are winning … It doesn’t really matter to us [how long the shutdown lasts] because what matters is the end result.” Congratulations, America, you are cannon fodder for a tyrant bent on permanent government control of your lives.
Louis DeBroux is a Taylorsville resident, married, with eight children. He is chairman of the Bartow County Republican Party. He owns Gatekeeper data backup and recovery. He can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.