Some People Who Don’t Want To Talk To Congress

The Daily Caller is reporting today that sources have told The Daily Caller News Foundation that Nellie Ohr, the wife of Justice Department official Bruce Ohr, is refusing to appear before Congress for a closed-door hearing that was scheduled to take place this Friday. Former FBI general counsel James Baker has also refused to cooperate with requests for an interview.

The article reports:

Ohr was slated to appear before the committees to discuss her work for Fusion GPS. Ohr, an expert on Russian affairs, worked for Fusion GPS from December 2015 until just after the election.

Bruce Ohr, the former assistant deputy attorney general, was in contact with dossier author Christopher Steele and Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson before and after the election.

The Ohrs both met Steele, a former British spy, in Washington, D.C. on July 30, 2016, a day before the FBI formally opened its counterintelligence investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russian government.

Congressional sources have told TheDCNF that Bruce Ohr briefed then-Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe about his interaction with Steele within days of the meeting.

Ohr’s contacts with Steele increased after the FBI cut ties with the dossier author just before the election because of unauthorized contacts with the press. Ohr provided at least a dozen briefings to the FBI about his interactions with Steele from November 2016 to May 2017.

The article concludes:

Baker, a close ally of former FBI Director James Comey’s, resigned from the FBI on May 4. Congress has wanted to quiz him about his knowledge of the Trump-Russia probe as well as the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s emails.

Neither Ohr nor Baker responded to emails seeking comment.

Just by watching the squirming about declassification and the people who do not want to talk to Congress, I can’t help but believe that the scandal around spygate extends even further than we have been led to believe.

Breaking The Rules To Save Your Own Skin

We are about a month away from early voting in the mid-term elections and about two months out from the actual election. Generally speaking the party of the President loses Congressional seats in the first mid-term elections of his presidency. That is generally because people are disappointed that he has failed to keep his campaign promises. That rule may or may not apply to President Trump–it seems as if a lot of rules don’t apply.

Some of the things the Democrats would do if they were to take over Congress would include:

  1. Ending the tax cuts for both individuals and corporations (this would promptly end the economic growth we have seen in the past year or so)
  2. Ending any investigation into the misuse of the Justice Department to spy on political opponents during and after the 2016 election
  3. Ending any investigations that may be going on into Uranium One or the Clinton Foundation
  4. Starting extensive investigations into President Trump with the aim of impeaching him
  5. Reinstating many of the regulations that prevented the economy from growing in the past
  6. Opening the borders and eliminating ICE
  7. Reinstating the original rules of ObamaCare (which would drastically increase the cost of health insurance for everyone) and reinstating the individual mandate

Some of the things the Republicans would do if they were to take over Congress:

  1. Complete Mueller’s investigation and finish the investigations into possible illegal spying by government agencies during the 2016 presidential campaign
  2. Make the tax cuts permanent (businesses don’t like uncertainty, until the tax cuts are made permanent there is some degree of uncertainty)
  3. Move further toward energy independence
  4. Seal the border
  5. Revise immigration policies so that people come here to assimilate and contribute to America–not just take advantage of our welfare programs.
  6. Clean out the swamp that is Washington, D.C.

With that in mind, I would like to post an excerpt from an article posted at The Conservative Treehouse today:

Many media outlets are now carrying the former Presidents’ daily speeches live during their broadcasts. There is a visible sense of panic amid the far-left apparatchik.

One thing stands as abundantly clear, the former president is afraid – very afraid.

Former President Obama is acting like a man who knows there is a strong likelihood a win for President Trump in the mid-terms means all of the corruption discovered during Obama’s administration will surface.   When campaigning today Obama says: “things can get worse“, he’s right.  Things likely will get much, much worse…. FOR HIM.

If President Trump can keep control or gain seats within the House of Representatives; and simultaneously build on the republican majority within the senate; there’s a horizon filled with consequences for President Obama, democrat politicians, and former administration officials who weaponized government to retain power.

Everything is being controlled, scripted and planned. On the surface it might seem like President Obama is violating every polite political custom in an effort to win seats in the mid-term election; however, below the surface the real motive is to save himself.

There were some serious shenanigans that went on during the Obama administration–the IRS scandal, Fast and Furious, Uranium One, Hillary’s server–just to name a few. If the Democrats fail to take control of Congress this year, it is quite possible that these scandals will be dealt with and the people responsible will be held accountable. There is a fairly substantial group of people in Washington that does not want that to happen. That is the reason the former President is running around the nation saying dumb things.

Making The Election Process More Confusing Than It Already Is

On August 31, The Washington Post posted an article about redistricting in the State of North Carolina. Before I go into detail, here is a picture of what is being discussed:

I don’t know about you, but the bottom map looks much more logical than the top map.

This is what true gerrymandering looks like:

I am sure I could have found many other examples, but this is one I know. Note the lavender that meanders from the Rhode Island border up to near Boston. I suppose it is simply an incredible coincidence that the lower part of that lavender is less populated than the area approaching Boston. Also, much of the lower part of that lavender tends to be Republican. What better way to dilute those votes than combine them with the more densely populated Democrat areas approaching Boston. Massachusetts is a one-party state, and its Congressional districts have never been challenged in court. Hmmm.

At any rate, the courts threw a monkey wrench into North Carolina’s November election. It is too late to change the districts, undo the primary elections, and print the ballots. It appears that saner heads have prevailed and the districts will remain in place at least until November.

The article reports:

The plaintiffs who persuaded federal judges to declare unconstitutional North Carolina’s Republican-drawn congressional maps have “reluctantly concluded” that there is not enough time to draw new maps in time for the November elections.

A three-judge panel ruled this week that the maps were an “invidious” plan to favor Republicans over Democrats and had resulted in the GOP capturing 10 of the state’s 13 congressional districts in 2016, even though its share of the statewide vote was just over 53 percent.

There is a reason we live in a representative republic and not a democracy. I think the redrawn districts appear to be much more logical than the previous districts.

Nothing To See Here–Keep Moving

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about the House Democratic Caucus’s server. It seems that the server went missing soon after it became evidence in a cybersecurity probe. Wow. What a coincidence. A newly obtained secret memo also said more than “40 House offices may have been victims of IT security violations.”

The article reports:

In the memo, Congress’s top law enforcement official, Sergeant-at-Arms Paul Irving, along with Chief Administrative Officer Phil Kiko, wrote, “We have concluded that the employees [Democratic systems administrator Imran Awan and his family] are an ongoing and serious risk to the House of Representatives, possibly threatening the integrity of our information systems and thereby members’ capacity to serve constituents.”

The memo, addressed to the Committee on House Administration (CHA) and dated Feb. 3, 2017, was recently reviewed and transcribed by The Daily Caller News Foundation. The letter bolsters TheDCNF’s previous reporting about the missing server and evidence of fraud on Capitol Hill.

It details how the caucus server, run by then-caucus Chairman Rep. Xavier Becerra, was secretly copied by authorities after the House Inspector General (IG) identified suspicious activity on it, but the Awans’ physical access was not blocked.

…Rep. Louie Gohmert — a Texas Republican on the House Committee on the Judiciary who has done oversight work on the case — said the missing server contained copies of Congress members’ emails.

“They put 40 members of Congress’s data on one server … That server, with that serial number, has disappeared,” he said.

The article concludes:

A Democratic IT aide who alleged that Imran solicited a bribe from him told TheDCNF he believes members of Congress are playing dumb and covering the matter up. Wendy Anderson, a former chief of staff to New York Rep. Yvette Clarke, told House investigators that she suspected that her predecessor, Shelley Davis, was working with Abid on a theft scheme, but Clarke refused to fire Abid until outside investigators got involved, TheDCNF reported.

Eighteen months after the evidence was recounted in the urgent memo, prosecution appears to have stalled for reasons not publicly explained. Imran is in court July 3 for a possible plea deal in the bank fraud case. Gohmert said the FBI has refused to accept evidence demonstrating alleged House misconduct, and some witnesses with first-hand knowledge say the bureau has not interviewed them.a

I will admit that over the years of writing this blog I have become somewhat cynical–with that in mind, I am convinced that there is someone or some people walking around Washington that have a lot of pictures showing many of our Congressmen that the Congressmen do not want revealed. I suspect those pictures and information will eventually come out. My suspicion is based on a public, but unique, internet source that I will not name. It is possible that the July 3 court date could take an interesting turn. Stay tuned. This story is totally underreported by the mainstream media, but The Daily Caller has followed it from the beginning.

Sometimes You Wonder If Members Of Congress Have Ever Read The Constitution They Swore To Uphold

Yesterday The Hill posted an article about legislation proposed by Republicans to keep families together at the southern border of the United States.

The article reports:

Senate Democratic Leader Charles Schumer (N.Y.) on Tuesday dismissed a legislative proposal backed by Republican leaders to keep immigrant families together at the border, arguing that President Trump could fix the problem more easily with a flick of his pen.

“There are so many obstacles to legislation and when the president can do it with his own pen, it makes no sense,” Schumer told reporters. “Legislation is not the way to go here when it’s so easy for the president to sign it.”

Asked if that meant Democrats would not support a bill backed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to keep immigrant families together while seeking asylum on the U.S. border, Schumer said they want to keep the focus on Trump. (Italics mine)

Legislation is the job of Congress. They are responsible for making laws. Not only is Senator Schumer shirking his responsibility, his statement makes it clear that he is more interested in politics than finding a solution. Senator Schumer is illustrating the difference between a politician and a businessman, and he is also illustrating the reason Donald Trump got elected. A politician ‘never lets a crisis go to waste.’ A businessman’s focus is on solving problems and moving forward.

It’s time to stop playing politics with border enforcement, secure our borders, and discourage people from trying to come to America illegally. If Senator Schumer chooses not to do his job, he should be replaced by a Senator who has read the Constitution and is willing to abide by his Oath of Office.

There Are Reasons Congress Needs To See The Original, Unedited Documents

Fox News posted an article today about some questions that arose during the House Judiciary and Oversight committee hearings yesterday. Congressmen are questioning Inspector General Michael Horowitz about his recent report on the investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails.

The article reports:

The House Judiciary and Oversight committees were questioning Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz over his bombshell report into FBI and DOJ misconduct during the Hillary Clinton email probe.

“The other thing that I would ask you to look into, there is growing evidence that 302s were edited and changed,” Meadows told Horowitz. “Those 302s, it is suggested that they were changed to either prosecute or not prosecute individuals. And that is very troubling.”

So-called “302s” are reports on witness interviews compiled by federal investigators. Horowitz said later he has additional information suggesting that the witness reports were changed after-the-fact in both the Clinton and Russia probes — a particularly alarming possibility given the IG report’s findings of bias in those investigations.

Horowitz suggested that the IG is reviewing information concerning modified 302s, saying his office intended to “follow up” on the matter.

In an article posted July 6, 2016, Townhall.com reminds us:

Director Comey added that Clinton and her senior aides had only been guilty of “extreme carelessness” in how they handled classified information, not “gross negligence.”

This is the law in question:

18 U.S.C. § 793 – U.S. Code – Unannotated Title 18. Crimes and Criminal Procedure § 793. Gathering, transmitting or losing defense information

(f)  Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer–

Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both.

(The underline is mine).

When the report on Hillary Clinton’s email was changed, it was changed to avoid the legal term “gross negligence.” This was done to prevent Hillary Cllinton from being charged with a crime. That is the reason the investigators need to see original documents. That is the only way any of us will actually be able to find and end the corruption that has been revealed in the FBI and the Department of Justice.

There Are Definitely A Lot Of Alligators In The Swamp

Yesterday Sara Carter posted an article on her website about the long-awaited (and we are still waiting) Inspector General’s report of the Hillary Clinton email server investigation.

The article reports:

The Department of Justice and the FBI are deliberately attempting to slow roll and redact significant portions of DOJ Inspector General, Michael Horowitz’s report on the bureau’s handling of the Hillary Clinton investigation, according to numerous congressional officials and investigators.

The 400-page report, which was completed several weeks ago and addresses Clinton’s use of her private server for government business, is currently being reviewed by the DOJ and FBI. According to sources, individuals mentioned in the reports are also allowed to review the document. It is expected to be “long and thorough” and will criticize the handling of the investigation by former FBI Director James Comey, who has spent the better part of the past several months promoting his book A Higher Loyalty.

Hillary Clinton is said to have stated in an email to Donna Brazile, “If that f***ing bastard wins, we’re all going to hang from nooses!!!!” I think we are beginning to see what she was talking about. The swamp is fighting the release of information related to what went on during the 2016 election campaign. I honestly don’t know if there are enough honest people left in our government to be able to expose the use of the Justice Department and FBI for political purposes that obviously occurred.

The article concludes:

In a turn of events, Democrats later changed their position on Comey after President Trump fired him at the request of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who stated that he failed in leading the investigation into Clinton.

“The director was wrong to usurp the Attorney General’s authority on July 5, 2016, and announce his conclusion that the case should be closed without prosecution,” Rosenstein wrote in his May 9, 2017 letter.

The letter continued:

It is not the function of the Director to make such an announcement. At most, the Director should have said the FBI had completed its investigation and presented its findings to federal prosecutors. The Director now defends his decision by asserting that he believed Attorney General Loretta Lynch had a conflict. However, the FBI Director is never empowered to supplant federal prosecutors and assume command of the Justice Department. There is a well-established process for other officials to step in when a conflict requires the recusal of the Attorney General. On July 5, however, the Director announced his own conclusions about the nation’s most sensitive criminal investigation, without the authorization of duly appointed Justice Department leaders.

Now, however, it is Rod Rosenstein who is overseeing Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, as obstruction for firing Comey.

Get out the popcorn, there is going to be a show.

Funding Terrorism Because You Don’t Think You Will Get Caught

Iran is known to be one of the major suppliers for weapons and terrorists around the world. The IED’s (Improvised Explosive Devices) American troops encountered in Iraq and Afghanistan generally originated in Iran. This is not a country that we want to give a lot of money to–the  money doesn’t go to the people–it goes to the military and to fund terrorism. So what in the world was President Obama thinking when he made a deal with Iran that gave them a boatload of money? It gets worse.

The Washington Times posted an article today about an attempt by President Obama to give Tehran access to American banks to convert the large amount of money Iran received after the nuclear agreement into American dollars.

The article reports:

The Obama administration — despite repeatedly assuring Congress that Iran would remain barred from the U.S. financial system — secretly mobilized to give Tehran access to American banks to convert the windfall of cash it received from sanctions relief under the 2015 nuclear deal into dollars, an investigative report by the Senate has revealed.

A copy of the report, obtained by The Washington Times, outlines how Obama-era State and Treasury Department officials discreetly issued a special license for the conversion to a major Omani bank and unsuccessfully pressured two U.S. banks to partake in the transaction, all while misleading lawmakers about the activities.

The document, compiled by the Senate’s Republican-led chief investigative subcommittee, began circulating Tuesday, just as the Trump administration issued its harshest warnings to date to foreign governments and companies to avoid doing business with Iran or find themselves in the crosshairs of Washington’s reimposition of sanctions as part of Mr. Trump’s withdrawal from the nuclear deal.

The article explains that Congress was not informed of what was going on–in fact they were lied to:

The Senate Homeland Security Committee’s permanent subcommittee on investigations probe contends that the Obama administration went out of its way to keep U.S. lawmakers in the dark about calculated and secretive efforts to give Tehran a back channel to the international financial system and to U.S. banks, facilitating a massive U.S. currency conversion worth billions of dollars.

“Senior U.S. government officials repeatedly testified to Congress that Iranian access to the U.S. financial system was not on the table or part of any deal,” according to a draft copy of the document obtained by The Times. “Despite these claims, the U.S. Department of the Treasury, at the direction of the U.S. State Department, granted a specific license that authorized a conversion of Iranian assets worth billions of U.S. dollars using the U.S. financial system.

“Even after the specific license was issued, U.S. government officials maintained in congressional testimony that Iran would not be granted access to the U.S. financial system,” the report said.

The article concludes:

Mr. Portman said in a statement Tuesday night that “the Obama administration misled the American people and Congress because they were desperate to get a deal with Iran.”

“Despite claims both before and after the Iran deal was completed that the U.S. financial system would remain off limits, the Obama administration issued a specific license allowing Iran to convert billions of dollars in assets using the U.S. financial system,” Mr. Portman said. “The only reason this transaction wasn’t executed was because two U.S. banks refused, even though the administration asked them to help convert the money.”

Such sanctions, he added, “are a vital foreign policy tool, and the U.S. government should never work to actively undermine their enforcement or effectiveness.”

Thank God our banks had more integrity than President Obama.

I’m Not Overly Optimistic, But It’s A Start

Last Thursday The Hill posted an article about the FBI’s handling of the probe into Hillary Clinton’s private email server. Why is this important? Because, as anyone who has ever held a security clearance knows, there are very strict rules for handling classified information. It is obvious that those rules were broken. The question then becomes, “Does America have equal justice under the law?” George Orwell stated in Animal Farm, ‘All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.’ Have we reached that point in America?

The article in The Hill reported some upcoming events regarding the investigation:

House Republicans are preparing to conduct the first interviews in more than four months in their investigation into the FBI’s handling of the Hillary Clinton email probe.

A joint investigation run by the Judiciary and the Oversight and Government Reform committees has set three witness interviews for June, including testimony from Bill Priestap, the assistant director of the FBI’s counterintelligence division, and Michael Steinbach, the former head of the FBI’s national security division.

Multiple congressional sources confirmed Priestap’s interview. Steinbach confirmed to The Hill that he would be appearing.

The third witness is John Giacalone, who preceded Steinbach as the bureau’s top national security official and oversaw the first seven months of the Clinton probe, according to multiple congressional sources.

The article notes:

Since October, the panel is believed to have interviewed only two witnesses — of about 20 potential witnesses — infuriating conservative members who are eager to uncover what some have characterized as “corruption.”

The pace of this investigation is disturbing. It causes me to wonder if it is being slow-walked in the hopes that the Democrats will take Congress and the investigation will go away. At that point we will have a totally corrupt government that does not represent the American people.

Yesterday The Conservative Treehouse posted the following statement:

Never, ever, ever trust a member of the Washington DC UniParty.  Write it down; underline it; stick a reminder on your bathroom mirror -if needed- in order to see it when you brush your teeth twice daily; do what ever it takes not to forget the fundamental aspect to avoid consigning yourself to a life of ‘Battered Conservative Syndrome‘.

I am hoping this statement will be proven false. I am not optimistic, but I am hoping.

Spending Money Where It Is Needed–Not For Political Purposes

The Washington Examiner posted an article today about ending the federal funding for abortion.

The article reports:

President Trump’s action last week, barring Title X family planning funds from programs and facilities that perform abortions, is thus entirely right and reasonable. For all Planned Parenthood’s gnashing of teeth, the only thing to suffer will be its own profits and the rewards of its senior executives. The public good and women’s health will, at a minimum, remain completely unaffected and, depending on your perspective, will be improved.

Trump’s decision will not reduce Title X funding at all. Rather, his policy guarantees that the limited funds available from that source will go to comprehensive community health centers all over America that provide health services Planned Parenthood doesn’t offer. There are 20 such community health centers for every Planned Parenthood affiliate. Most provide services such as mammograms that Planned Parenthood doesn’t offer. Most are also not so heavily involved and invested in partisan politics.

According to opensecrets.org, in the 2016 election cycle, Planned Parenthood (through its PAC) donated $671,048 to federal candidates (98% to Democrats, 1% to Republicans).

According to the ACLJ (American Center for Law and Justice):

Planned Parenthood just released their 2016–2017 annual report. The findings are clear: over 320,000 abortions committed in the last year; over half a billion in government funding; nearly $100 million in profit (a staggering 27% increase over the prior year). Big Abortion is big business.

Regardless of where you stand on protecting the unborn, abortion should not be a million dollar business.

It is obvious from the above numbers that Planned Parenthood does not actually need federal money–they are making a substantial profit on their own and they are supporting political candidates.

It has been my belief for a long time that entities that make political contributions should not be eligible for federal funds. This should include any political action committees (PACS) set up by those entities. This seems rather obvious to me, but evidently Congress has not yet figured it out (I guess Congress likes its donations from these entities). The idea of taking federal money and making political donations seems like money laundering to me.

 

Pictures From The Opening Of The U.S. Embassy In Jerusalem Today

This are two pictures from Israel today as America opens its Embassy in Jerusalem.

In December 2017, The Washington Post reminded us:

Ten days before he was assassinated in Tel Aviv, Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin gave a speech in Washington about the city of Jerusalem.

“Jerusalem is the heart of the Jewish people and a deep source of our pride,” Rabin said at an event recognizing the 3,000th year of the city’s existence.

“We differ in our opinions, left and right,” he said as the speech concluded. “We disagree on the means and the objective. In Israel, we all agree on one issue: the wholeness of Jerusalem, the continuation of its existence as capital of the State of Israel. There are no two Jerusalems. There is only one Jerusalem. For us, Jerusalem is not subject to compromise, and there is no peace without Jerusalem.”

That speech was given Oct. 25, 1995. On Nov. 4, a far-right student fatally shot him.

The evening before his speech, the Congress of the United States passed a law echoing Rabin’s assertions about the city. Spurred by the desire to act before Rabin’s visit, the House and Senate passed a bill called the “Jerusalem Embassy Act,” which formally recognized the city as the country’s capital and called for the U.S. Embassy in Israel to be moved there from Tel Aviv by 1999. Support for the bill was overwhelming. It passed the Senate by a 93 to 5 vote, with four Republicans and one Democrat voting no. It passed the House 374 to 37, with 153 Democrats joining most of the new Republican majority that had swept into power in 1994.  (the underline is mine)

So why wasn’t it done? The article explains:

The bill was not signed into law by then-President  Bill Clinton. Clinton had made an early effort to craft a new peace agreement in the Middle East, forging the Oslo accords between Israel and Palestinians, signed in 1993 and September 1995. (Rabin’s support for the accords was apparently one of the things that motivated his assassin.) The Embassy Act, Clinton said in a statement, “could hinder the peace process. I will not let this happen and will use the legislation’s waiver authority to avoid damage to the peace process.”

That waiver authority was a critical escape valve for Clinton and his successors. Initially, the legislation introduced by then-Kansas senator Bob Dole (R) mandated that groundbreaking on a new embassy in Jerusalem begin in 1996. To quell concerns from Clinton allies on the Hill, Dole added a provision that allowed the president to postpone implementation of the move for six months if “such suspension is necessary to protect the national security interests of the United States.”

Every President since Clinton has taken advantage of that waiver to avoid moving the Embassy. Why? Because up until now America has been almost totally dependent on Arab countries in the Middle East for our energy supply. Now that we are on the road to energy independence, we are free to make decisions on the basis of what is right rather than how much oil we need.

Thank you, President Trump, for having the courage to move the Embassy.

The Impact Of The Tax Cuts

On Monday, The Washington Times posted an article about a Congressional Budget Office report on April tax revenue.

The article reports:

The federal government took in a record tax haul in April en route to its biggest-ever monthly budget surplus, the Congressional Budget Office said, as a surging economy left Americans with more money in their paychecks — and this more to pay to Uncle Sam.

All told the government collected $515 billion and spent $297 billion, for a total monthly surplus of $218 billion. That swamped the previous monthly record of $190 billion, set in 2001.

CBO analysts were surprised by the surplus, which was some $40 billion more than they’d guessed at less than a month ago.

It will be interesting to see if the CBO changes its predictions on future deficits as tax revenues increase.

The article further states:

April is always a strong month for government finances, with taxpayers filing their returns for the previous year and settling up what they owe, even as expenditures often dip for the month.

But this year was particularly strong, with receipts jumping 13 percent compared to a year ago.

The news couldn’t come at a better time for President Trump and congressional Republicans, who were facing major questions about the damage last year’s tax-cut package might do to future deficits. Just a month ago the CBO projected that the deficit would quickly soar back to $1 trillion a year.

The deficit is a problem and will be a problem in the future. Hopefully the rescissions package that President Trump sent to Congress will pass (article here), and Congress will begin to trim the out-of-control spending it is accustomed to. Our future depends on it–we are not undertaxed–Congress is overspending.

This Is Not A New Idea

On Friday, The Daily Signal posted an article about a proposal before Congress asking taxpayers to make loans to private, union-run pension plans. This is a really bad idea. We have seen what has happened to the college loan program since the government took it over. Just in case you think the idea of the government bailing out union pension plans is far-fetched, I posted an article about this idea in October of 2010.

The article reports:

The Butch Lewis Act—a proposal to bail out private-sector pensions through loans as well as direct cash assistance—acknowledges the high probability of default by stipulating that pension plans that have trouble repaying their loans after 30 years of interest-only payments will be eligible for forgiveness or alternative repayment plans.

A loan with a zero-consequence default option for the borrower is not a loan—it’s a bailout.

But it’s not just defaults that taxpayers need to be concerned about. There’s also the cost of providing highly subsidized, low- or no-interest loans for 15 to 30 years, as well as the risk that plans will increase—rather than decrease—their unfunded liabilities over the course of their loans.

These features could lead to loans to insolvent pension plans costing taxpayers more than direct cash bailouts.

But those costs won’t be apparent in the official government score because the Congressional Budget Office is required to score loans under the assumption that insolvent pension plans are essentially riskless borrowers.

In reality, loans to insolvent pension plans could cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars. The most liberal proposals—which supplement loans with direct cash assistance—could cost more than the entirety of multiemployer pensions’ half-trillion-dollar shortfall.

Does anyone really believe that these loans will be paid back? Union membership is down, and various courts are hearing cases that will make the mandatory payment of union dues by non-union members who work in a union shop illegal. Both of these factors will make the union retirement plans (actually a true Ponzi scheme) unsustainable.

The article concludes:

Coping with roughly $500 billion in private union pensions’ unfunded promises will not be easy. There are ways to minimize losses to workers who have earned pension benefits and protect taxpayers from paying for private pensions’ broken promises.

Policymakers should look to improve the solvency of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp.’s multiemployer program through premium increases and other reforms; end union pensions’ preferential treatment; enact and enforce sound funding rules; hold pension trustees liable for financial decisions; act sooner rather than later to enact needed reforms, including benefit reductions; and explicitly prohibit federal pension bailouts.

None of these actions provide a costless cure-all, but they offer more fair and rational solutions that don’t treat taxpayers as guarantors of private-sector promises or set the stage for even more mismanagement and reckless behavior.

There is no reason every American should pay for the fact that the unions have not sufficiently funded their retirement plans!

The Issue Or The Solution?

One of the problems with Washington is that if there is a problem, the political types will always try to figure out if solving it is the answer or if playing up the issue and the fact that it is not solved will gain votes. That is one of many reasons it is so hard to get things done. It is a shame that our politicians have forgotten that they are supposed to work for the voters and that they were sent to Washington to accomplish things. There are a few aspects of illegal immigration that make it very difficult to solve. The Democrats want the issue and the future voters. The Republican corporate types want cheap labor. There is also a school of thought that leaving the issue of the ‘dreamers’ unsolved will bring out Democratic voters–another reason Democrats would rather have the problem than the solution. Meanwhile, no one in Washington is looking at the negative impact of illegal workers on the salaries of Americans with low skills.

Paul Mirengoff at Power Line posted an article today about the failure of Congress to pass a bill to help the ‘dreamers.’ He pointed out some of the last minute things that were added to one ‘compromise’ bill.

The article quotes a Washington Post article:

[A]s the “war room” of administration lawyers and policy experts examined the 64-page text on Wednesday, it was a handwritten note on the final page that set off the loudest alarm bells. That section dealt with setting in law DHS’s priorities for enforcement. Under the proposal, the agency would focus its powers on immigrants with felonies or multiple misdemeanors, who were national security threats and who had arrived in the country after a certain date.

Scribbled in the margins was a date: June 30, 2018 [Note: an end of January date in the typed text was crossed out].

The administration team was dumbstruck: In addition to making it harder for DHS to deport all of those already here illegally, lawmakers were opening the door to a surge of new unauthorized immigrants by setting an effective “amnesty” date four months in the future.

“No one who has worked on immigration issues in the administration or on the Hill was aware of any legislation that had ever been proposed and scheduled to receive a vote on the floor of the Senate that created an amnesty program effectively for those who arrive in the future,” said a DHS official who helped lead the review. “That would clearly and unequivocally encourage a massive wave of illegal immigration and visa overstays.”

(Emphasis added by Paul Mirengoff)

What this bill would do would be to extend amnesty to anyone who arrived before June 30. Does anyone believe that setting that date would not encourage a flood of illegal immigrants wanting to arrive before the deadline. There is no way anyone who read the bill all the way through and understood its consequences could support it.

The article at Power Line concludes:

Perhaps some wanted to maximize the amnesty, while others were too lazy to read to the end of bill or too clueless to grasp the consequences of what they read.

From the Democrats’ perspective, was the prospective amnesty something they thought they could sneak through or was it a poison pill? Some have speculated that Democrats don’t want any deal that includes a wall and would like (or be okay with) a political landscape in which the Dreamers are still in limbo.

Perhaps Democrats saw inclusion of the handwritten note as a win-win. Either they get all those new illegal immigrants ensconced here or they blame the administration for doing nothing for Dreamers.

Today’s Post story looks like implementation of the second option.

When you hear the Democrats complain that President Trump refused to help the ‘dreamers,’ remember that it was the Democrats who made sure the bill would not be passed. It is obvious that the issue is of more value to the Democratic party than a solution.

A Really Bad Idea

Yesterday One America News posted an article about the U.S. Chamber of Commerce‘s suggestion that the gasoline tax be raised to pay for an infrastructure bill. No. That is a really bad idea. American’s just got a tax cut, now the Chamber of Commerce essentially wants to take that tax cut away.

The article states:

The right-leaning U.S. Chamber of Commerce says a federal gas tax of 25-cents per gallon could raise more than $370 billion over the next ten years.]

It’s been a while since the U.S. Chamber of Commerce was right-leaning–they support amnesty for illegals, common core, and other things that are definitely not right-leaning.

Consider what 25-cents a gallon would mean to the average working person. That could mean between $50 and $100 a month depending on the amount of driving they do and the mileage their car gets. The abrupt rise of gasoline prices leading up to 2008 was a small part of what caused the housing bubble to burst–people who were scraping by to pay their mortgages suddenly got hit with $100 plus a month in added fuel expenses for gas and oil and could not pay those expenses. Is the Chamber of Commerce trying to slow down the growing economy by adding a new tax? It sure seems that way.

If Congress needs money for infrastructure, they need to find a place to cut spending to pay for it.

One Way To Save Taxpayers Money

Yesterday Roll Call posted an article stating that the House of Representatives has paid out more than $15 million over the last decade to settle harassment cases, though that number also includes discrimination claims. There has been no information released as to exactly why the payments were made or exactly which members of Congress were involved.

The article reports:

Speier’s (Representative Jackie Speier) office clarified Wednesday that the Office of Compliance, which handles workplace and accessibility issues on Capitol Hill, does not provide a breakdown for the type of discrimination payments made.

The OOC’s $15 million figure covered more than 200 payouts made from fiscal years 1997 to 2016 for all claims the office covered, such as racial and religious discrimination cases, discrimination against people with disabilities and sexual harassment, a Speier staffer said.

Why were the taxpayers paying out this money instead of the people involved?

It seems as if sexual harassment has become the issue of the day. I find this a bit disingenuous. In addition to the pass given to Bill Clinton, where was this issue when Ted Kennedy and Chris Dodd were in Congress? There is a danger of a witch hunt here. There is also a danger that because of the political divide in the country right now, the investigation of sexual harassment in Congress will turn into a very ugly political process.

 

Preventing The Fleecing Of The Middle Class

The American tax code is a tribute to the effectiveness of lobbyists and big campaign donors. The loopholes in the code for people who make a lot of money are numerous. Even with loopholes in place, the rich pay a lot of taxes. As I have previously reported, The top 10 percent of income earners, those having an adjusted gross income over $138,031, pay about 70.6 percent of federal income taxes. About 1.7 million Americans, less than 1 percent of our population, pay 70.6 percent of federal income taxes. These numbers come from actual IRS data.

However, it seems that when it comes to eliminating loopholes, it’s always the middle class loopholes that go away.

Breitbart posted an article today about Congress‘ latest effort to take away a middle-class tax break. Because of a certain lack of faith in the future solvency of Social Security, many employers offer employees 401k retirement plans. Aside from allowing middle-class families to save for the future, these programs provide a place to put money so that it will not be taxed during the highest earning period of the employee. It will be taxed later at retirement when traditionally a person’s earnings are lower and generally taxed at a lower rate. Congress was evidently planning to alter the current system.

Breitbart reports:

“There will be NO change to your 401(k),” Trump tweeted. “This has always been a great and popular middle class tax break that works, and it stays!”

House Republicans were considering a plan to slash the amount of income American workers can save in tax-deferred retirement accounts. Currently, workers can put up to $18,000 a year into 401(k) accounts without paying taxes on that money until they retire and withdraw money from their savings. Proposals under discussion on Capitol Hill would set the cap lower, perhaps as low as $2,400. The effect would be a huge tax hike on middle class workers.

The plan to lower the cap on 401(k)’s would not have had an effect on long-term government deficits. Instead, it would have raised tax revenue now but lowered it in the future, since the retirement savings would already have been taxed. But taxing the savings would have had an impact on household budgets and may have discouraged workers from saving, increasing their future dependence on government benefits.

Let’s cut spending to ‘pay for’ tax cuts. Actually, if taxes are cut, economic growth should increase to a point where there is no loss of revenue. During the 1980’s, after President Reagan cut taxes, government revenue soared. Unfortunately, the Democrats who controlled Congress at the time greatly increased spending, so the government debt increased rather than decreased. Generally speaking, lowering taxes increases revenue–people are less inclined to look for tax shelters.

The Laffer Curve works:

Congress needs to keep this in mind while revising the tax code.

 

Ignoring A Major Story

Yesterday Newsbusters posted an article which reveals how biased our mainstream media has become. If you depend on the mainstream media for your news, the following events may come as a surprise to you.

The article lists the timeline on the scandal involving the Information Technology specialists working for many of the Democrats in Congress. This is the timeline (the story has been covered from the beginning by The Daily Caller):

  • August 1GOP Rep: House IT Scandal Among ‘All-Time Congressional Scandals’ Of Last 30 Years.” That time frame would take things back to before the infamous House Bank scandal, which ended the careers of dozens of Congresspersons who routinely wrote checks despite having insufficient funds in their House Bank accounts to cover them. Of the 22 congresspersons singled out for particularly egregious abuse in this scandal (and although, to be clear, many other congresspersons engaged in the practice), 18 were Democrats.
  • August 3“Florida Congressman Pays Girlfriend’s Family, Money Launderer For Unexplained Work.” If it involves Florida and political corruption, you almost have to know that the name of Congressman Alcee Hastings, who was one a federal judge until he was impeached and convicted by the House and Senate, respectively, in 1989, will come up. In this instance, Hastings allegedly “used his taxpayer-funded office to pay high salaries to a convicted money launderer, as well as Hastings’s girlfriend and her daughter, and the Florida politician won’t say what kind of work the convicted money launder(er) does.” This is potentially relevant to the Imran Awan case because it “raise(s) questions about how common it is for members of Congress to place ‘ghost employees’ on the payroll” — an allegation which potentially applies to Awan’s vastly overpaid relatives.
  • August 4“DWS: Imran Awan Is The Kindest, Bravest, Warmest, Most Wonderful Human Being I’ve Ever Known In My Life.” This item by Jim Treacher, whose penetrating sarcasm is a national treasure, isn’t newsworthy by itself, but it does link to a Broward County (FL) Sun Sentinel item where Wasserman Schultz ridicules the notion that Awan was trying to flee the U.S. when he was arrested at Dulles Airport after having transferred about $300,000 to an account or accounts in Pakistan. If a Republican congressman made such a claim about an aide in a similar situation, the late-night leftist activists posing as comedians would be all over it.
  • August 4 — “Wasserman Schultz Says Laptop She Sought To Keep From Police Was Awan’s, Not Hers.” Imagine that: After resisting police efforts to seize the laptop based on issues relating to whether it belongs to a “member” (of Congress), Wasserman Schultz has now totally changed her tune, claiming that, in reporter Luke Rosiak’s words, “it was Imran’s laptop but purchased using taxpayer funds from her office,” and that, in her words, “This was not my laptop. I have never seen that laptop. I don’t know what’s on the laptop.”
  • August 5Jeb Bush Just RIPPED Debbie Wasserman Schultz Over The House IT Scandal.” What Bush said or didn’t say isn’t nearly as important as the should-be-obvious point that if someone like Chuck Schumer or Andrew Cuomo was “ripping” a Republican involved in a scandal like this, you’d have to rent a major hotel meeting room to accommodate the establishment media horde which would be hanging on their every word instead of ignoring the successful governor of one of the nation’s largest states.
  • August 8“Grassley Seeks Immigration Files For Pakistani Suspects In House IT Probe.” Yes, “suspects” is plural: “the immigration files were requested for … (Imran Awan’s) wife, Hina Alvi, his brothers Abid and Jamal, sister-in-law Natalia Sova and friend Rao Rabbas. All are suspects in the criminal investigation, which became public in February.”
  • August 17“Two Former Wasserman Schultz IT Aides Indicted For Conspiracy Against US.”
  • August 18“Media Ignores Indictment Of Wassermann Schultz IT Aide.” How often does the actual indictment of criminal arrested on serious charges while potentially facing far more serious charges relating to a congressional scandal get totally ignored by the establishment press? I’m sorry, I meant to ask how often that happens if the person involved is or is associated with a Republican or conservative. Answer: almost never.
  • August 22“Dem Rep Dodges Questions On Arrested House IT Staffer.” New York Congresswoman Yvette Clarke “agreed last year to sign away $120,000 of missing computer equipment for the two former IT aides who authorities now believe stole the gear from Congress,” and “refused to answer questions” from a reporter about Awan.
  • August 24“DWS ‘Islamophobia’ Claim Prompts Angered Marine To Go Public On Awans.” Yes, Wasserman Schultz and Awan’s Bill Clinton-connected lawyer are claiming that the matter is of no substance, and that it’s really about “Islamophobia.” It’s really hard to blame the Marine involved for getting extremely angry over this when he sees someone who has sworn to uphold the Constitution and protect this country’s interest so obviously demonstrate that she cares about neither.

Isn’t this story newsworthy?

How Much Does It Cost?

The one thing that the Obama Administration should be famous for is the amount of regulations imposed on the American people through the Executive Branch of government–not through Congress, the body that is supposed to make laws–but through the Executive Branch. There is a cost on these regulations. The Washington Examiner posted a story today detailing that cost.

The article includes the following chart:

costofregulatoinsThe article reports:

The new high in regulatory costs, said Batkins (AAF’s Sam Batkins, director of regulatory policy at the watchdog group), came after new fuel standards for trucks were implemented.

His study goes back to 2005, when George W. Bush was president, and said that Obama is responsible for about three-quarters of the added regulatory costs.

“The Obama Administration surpassed 500 major regulations last summer, imposing $625 billion in cumulative costs. Earlier this year, regulators published the administration’s 600th major rule, increasing burdens to $743 billion. Now, thanks to data from the last term of the Bush Administration and another billion-dollar rule from EPA, the regulatory tally has surpassed $1 trillion. These figures are direct estimates from federal regulators, but it will take more than an effort from these regulators to amend hundreds of major regulations. Congress, the next president, and even the courts must participate in the next generation of regulatory modernization,” he reported.

The reason that Congress is charged with making laws is that they are accountable to the voters. The Executive Branch (other than the President) is not elected and cannot be held accountable to the voters. However, as illustrated by November’s election, the voters do have a certain amount of power in terms of who controls the Executive Branch. Hopefully the Inauguration of Donald Trump will signal the end of over-regulation in America at least temporarily.

A Different Solution To America’s Spending Problem

The national debt has doubled since 2007.  It is now approximately $19,000,000,000,000. Congress has not been successful at stopping spending, and the economy is struggling along with the burden of debt and over-regulation. One Congressman has a proposal that will deal with at least part of the problem.

Yesterday PJ Media posted an article about a proposal by Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah).

The article reports:

Rep. Mark Walker (R-N.C.), Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) and Rep. Dave Brat (R-Va.) joined Lee to formally introduce the Article I Regulatory Budget Reform Act, which would require Congress to cast a vote on the “total regulatory burden” federal agencies are able to enforce on the private sector each fiscal year.

“Federal regulations come with a cost, albeit a hidden one. The American people can look up in the federal budget and see a monetary cost for the IRS and the EPA. They should also be able to look up what the regulatory cost for these agencies are as well. Beyond making the cost of federal regulation transparent, a regulatory budget will help restore accountability for the cost of regulation onto the people’s elected representatives,” Hensarling said at Hillsdale College’s Kirby Center in Washington.

“With a regulatory budget, it would become so much more difficult for members of Congress to simply pass the buck and blame the faceless, nameless bureaucrats for the cost of regulations on the American people’s families and their businesses,” he added.

Under the U.S. Constitution, Congress is charged with making laws. They are supposed to be held accountable for the laws they pass. Unfortunately, we have wandered into a system where unelected bureaucrats are making our laws, and we can’t vote them out of office.

The article adds:

Lee argued that most of the major bills Congress has passed only “establish aspirational guidelines,” which gives the executive branch the power to determine the specifics. He said Congress should establish “regulatory-cost limits” for federal agencies to follow.

“For the rule-writing bureaucrats, these open-ended laws are gifts that keep on giving. For instance, in the years since Congress first passed the Clean Air Act in 1977, federal bureaucrats have used the law to enact more than 13,500 pages of regulations – roughly 30 pages for every page of legislative text,” Lee said.

“But for the American people, this kind of government without consent is a violation of the social compact at the heart of our republic and exactly why they no longer trust the federal government,” he added.

The U.S. Constitution is an amazing document. The government it established works. Unfortunately we have altered that government to the point where it barely works and is not trusted by the American people. We need serious reform in Washington. Senator Lee’s proposal might be a good place to start.

Who Is Making Our Laws?

We have reached the point in our representative republic where the people making the laws are not the people the voters elect and not the people the voters can hold accountable. A very large percentage of our laws are in the form of regulations that come from un-elected bureaucrats who cannot be held accountable by the voters. Yesterday the Conservative Tribune posted an article about the cost of these regulations.

The article includes the following graphs:

Hidden Government TaxHiddenGovernmentTax2The article reports:

Most troubling is the the nature of our regulatory system. They are designed by rogue and unelected bureaucrats. Regulations effectively become laws with little oversight or accountability. 

This isn’t a small problem. Take for example your elected representatives in Congress. In 2015, CEI finds that Congress enacted 114 laws (that’s probably too many). However, unelected bureaucrats issued 3,410 rules in that same year. In other words, the “fourth” branch of government that is unaccountable issued 30 regulatory decrees for every one law passed by Congress. That’s simply insane. 

In total, there are 178,277 pages in the Code of Federal Regulations which outline the 94,000 rules currently on the books. The cost to enforce all these regulations comes at a massive price. CEI finds that federal agencies spent $63 billion in taxpayer dollars to administer and police this regulatory enterprise.

As bad as this seems, it’s about to get worse. There are currently 3,297 new regulations in the implementation phase. Of this total, CEI finds that 218 are considered “economically significant,” a definition the government uses when a regulation will have an economic impact of $100 million or more. 

The hidden regulatory tax is becoming dangerous to American democracy. The regulatory apparatus is out of control. Over the past 23 years, the number of regulations has increased by 2,060 percent. Individuals that are not elected, or confirmed by elected representatives, should not have such great authority and power over our lives. 

Please follow the link to read the entire article. It is eye-opening.

It’s About Time

On Tuesday The Washington Free Beacon reported that lawmakers in Congress have filed legislation to designate the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization. It’s about time.

Who is the Muslim Brotherhood?

Gamal al-Banna, the brother of Hassan al-Banna, the man who founded of the Muslim Brotherhood in 1928, was interviewed for a Norwegian television documentary, called “Freedom, Equality and the Muslim Brotherhood,”, He stated, “They (the Muslim Brotherhood) do not believe in freedom at all. There is no Islamic authority that respects freedom or democracy.”

Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood are cut of the same cloth. The documents uncovered in the Holy Land Foundation Trial (if you follow the link, the first half is in Arabic, the second half is the English translation) explained clearly that the Muslim Brotherhood was (and is) in the process of implementing a plan to bring America under Sharia Law and create a world-side caliphate. The plan of the Brotherhood is to do this by infiltrating the American government and influencing policy. Al Qaeda has the same goal–they just want to do it by violent means rather than peaceful means.

Unfortunately, the Muslim Brotherhood has successfully infiltrated the American government at all levels. In 2012 US Army Lieutenant Colonel Matthew Dooley was condemned by the Joints Chiefs of Staff (JCS) and relieved of teaching duties at Joint Forces Staff College for teaching a course judged to be offensive to Islam. Former CIA agent Claire M. Lopez commented on the state of things: “All US military Combatant Commands, Services, the National Guard Bureau, and Joint Chiefs are under Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey’s Muslim Brotherhood-dictated order to ensure that henceforth, no US military course will ever again teach truth about Islam that the jihadist enemy finds offensive (or just too informative).”

The Washington Free Beacon reports:

“I can say at the outset that elements of the Muslim Brotherhood both here and overseas have supported terrorism,” said Robert Mueller, the former director of the FBI, during testimony in 2011.

Intelligence officials have established that elements of the Brotherhood run terrorist financing operations in the United States. Much of this information, however, remains classified.

Other officials have explained that terror groups such as Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and al Qaeda can all trace their roots back to the Muslim Brotherhood and its leaders.

Cruz has also led congressional efforts to designate Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps an official state sponsor of terrorism.

That bill, submitted at the end of September, would likely mitigate the impact of sanctions relief provided to Iran under the recently inked nuclear deal.

“Branches of the [Revolutionary Guard Corps] have murdered hundreds of Americans,” Cruz said in a statement at the time. “They have attacked our allies, notably Israel. They have provided material support for other designated terrorist groups, such as Hezbollah and Hamas. Yet for years the United States has sanctioned [Revolutionary Guard Corps] entities while leaving the organization itself untouched.”

It is about time we declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization.

One Answer To Federal Government Overreach

According to the IJReview, the Arizona House of Representatives passed a bill last Wednesday that had only two provisions.

The article lists the provisions:

  1. Prohibits this state or any of its political subdivisions from using any personnel or financial resources to enforce, administer or cooperate with a policy directive issued by the U.S. DOJ to law enforcement agencies in this state that has not been affirmed by a vote of Congress and signed into law as prescribed by the U.S. Constitution.
  2. Prohibits this state or any of its political subdivisions from using any personnel or financial resources to enforce, administer or cooperate with an executive order issued by the President of the U.S. that has not been affirmed by a vote of Congress and signed into law as prescribed by the U.S. Constitution.

Simply stated, unless Congress passes the law, Arizona is not going to follow it. That is the way our government is supposed to work. Thank you, Arizona.

 

Has Anyone In The Obama Administration Read The U.S. Constitution?

TownHall.com is reporting today that President Obama is “very interested” in the idea of raising taxes through unilateral executive action.

The Sixteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution states:

The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.

The U.S. Constitution also states:

Article I, Section 8, Clause 1:

The Congress shall have Power to lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States.

Note that in both cases, Congress is tasked with the responsibility of levying taxes.

The article reports:

Obama’s preferred option would be for Congress to pass a corporate tax hike that would fund liberal infrastructure projects like mass transit. But if Congress fails to do as Obama wishes, just as Congress has failed to pass the immigration reforms that Obama prefers, Obama could take actions unilaterally instead. This past November, for example, Obama gave work permits, Social Security Numbers, and drivers licenses to approximately 4 million illegal immigrants.

The President has frequently exceeded his executive authority. Congress has been reluctant (or toothless) to fight back. Unless members of Congress from both political parties begin to stand up to these power grabs, by the time President Obama leaves office, our country will be unrecognizable. It’s time to put the good of America above party politics.

 

Policies Have Consquences

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article detailing some of the impact President Obama’s policies will have on the federal deficit after he leaves office.

The article states that during the remainder of President Obama’s term, the deficit should shrink. That is the good news. However, all of the news is not good.

The article reports:

…The bad news is the deficit begins spiking again in 2017, the year Obama’s successor will be sworn into office, before returning to $1 trillion a year in 2025.

All that red ink comes without another Great Recession, with the country’s biggest wars supposedly ending, without any new big-ticket spending items.

The article explains the reason for the increasing deficit:

Medicaid spending will be double what it was when Obama took office, thanks in part to Obamacare. Spending on the health care exchanges, a mere $15 billion in 2014, will be just under $100 billion annually in only two years.

Between 2016 and 2025, the Obamacare Medicaid expansion will cost $920 billion and $1.1 trillion on health insurance subsidies. That’s a rounding error away from $2 trillion.

…The baby boomers’ retirement isn’t Obama’s fault. The fact that the major federal retirement programs are all still structured the way they were for the baby boomers’ parents and grandparents is partly his fault. And the costs of Obamacare are almost entirely his fault (Congress deserves its share of the blame too).

It is very obvious that the first step to solving this problem should be to abolish ObamaCare and return healthcare and health insurance to the private sector. That will not solve the entire problem, but it would be a big step forward. Let’s see if the new GOP majority in Congress is willing to do that. If not, it’s time to elect a different GOP majority.