The Hammer: Amnesty via Executive Order an Impeachable Offense, But Impeachment Would Still Be Political SuicidePosted: July 29, 2014
If Obama were to carry out his threat to use an executive order to grant amnesty to millions of illegals, Charles Krauthammer expressed this duality:
“Clearly lawless and it would be biggest domestic overreach of a president in memory…an impeachable offense.”
And later added,
“I would be 100 percent against impeachment because it’s political suicide.”
See how that works? The political paradox for opponents of executive overreach: If a president has the majority of the media working to protect him, and his opponents are defenseless because of this historically unique opportunity — virtually immune to impeachment — why wouldn’t he abuse his authority?
From today’s National Review Online: Talk of impeachment is a “concoction of Democrats,” but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a grander strategy by the White House and its congressional allies, Charles Krauthammer warned.
On Tuesday’s Special Report, he speculated that the Obama administration may be trying to exhaust the idea of impeachment and “softening people up for” when the president uses executive action to grant legal status and work authorization to millions of immigrants in the country illegally…(read more)
GLOBAL PANIC FAILURE OVERLOAD Washington Post: ‘President Obama’s Competence Problem is Worse Than It Looks’Posted: July 29, 2014
“Almost six years on from that election, however, Obama is faltering badly on the competence question…”
Obama was elected in 2008 on a stated promise that he would restore competence to government. He pitched himself as the antidote to “Heck of a job, Brownie” and the Bush years, the person who would always put the most qualified candidate in every job in his Administration. That the basic functioning of government would never be in question.
“…and, in so doing, badly imperiling not only his ability to enact any sort of second term agenda but also Democrats’ chances this fall.”
Almost six years on from that election, however, Obama is faltering badly on the competence question and, in so doing, badly imperiling not only his ability to enact any sort of second term agenda but also Democrats’ chances this fall. A series of events — from the VA scandal to the ongoing border crisis to the situation in Ukraine to the NSA spying program — have badly undermined the idea that Obama can effectively manage the government. Read the rest of this entry »
“It’s not the job of the U.S. military to do nation building or produce democratic utopias.”
For The Daily Beast, Eli Lake writes: One way to understand Ted Cruz’s foreign policy, particularly if you are a Democrat, is through the prism of the social media phenomenon known as trolling. The best trolls are provocateurs. Their language is meant to expose a fallacy or weakness in the opponent’s position as opposed to offering a constructive alternative.
“The American president has a peculiar leadership responsibility to speak out for freedom.”
In a wide-ranging interview with the junior senator from Texas, there was a lot of trolling. Of Obama’s recent attempt to stop the fighting in Gaza, Cruz said, “We should be helping Israel, not Hamas, which is what John Kerry’s proposal would have done.” But Cruz found a silver lining. “It’s remarkable that the failures of the Obama, Clinton, Kerry foreign policy are not only uniting the left and right in Israel but might even be creating some common ground between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.”
Cruz’s foreign policy approach hews much closer to that of one of Reagan’s top advisers, Jeane Kirkpatrick. She wrote a landmark essay for Commentary in 1979 called “Dictatorships And Double Standards” where she chastised President Jimmy Carter for pursuing human rights at the expense of U.S. national interests.
When speaking about the conditions that led up to the Egyptian military coup last year, Cruz observed: “One of the saddest things to see were posters among the people that said: ‘Obama supports the Muslim Brotherhood,’ ‘America supports terrorists.’”
Cruz described Secretary of State John Kerry’s surprise deal with Vladimir Putin to disarm Syria’s chemical weapons in these words: “The incompetence of the Obama foreign policy was so manifest that it presented an opportunity for Putin to cast himself as a hero and save the day.” The Federal Aviation Administration’s decision last week to suspend all air travel to Israel after a Hamas rocket fell near Ben Gurion Airport amounted to an “economic boycott of Israel.”
But to think of Cruz as just a troll is to miss an important development in the Grand Old Party’s post-Bush foreign policy. Read the rest of this entry »
“That pattern involves taking provocative executive actions on sensitive, divisive issues to isolate people he detests, knowing it will invite a sharp response, and then using the response to scare his own base voters into thinking they are under assault when in fact they are on the offensive.”
Yuval Levin‘s post at The Corner is bracing, and revealing, noteworthy not only because of the insights expressed here, but as an example of what team NRO does best: the most lucid writing on these matters you’ll find anywhere.
From Legalization by Edict:
“…the notion that the president can respond to a failure to get Congress to adopt his preferred course on a prominent and divisive public issue by just acting on his own as if a law he desires had been enacted has basically nothing to do with our system of government.
In one sense, the approach the president is said to be contemplating does fit into a pattern of his use of executive power. That pattern involves taking provocative executive actions on sensitive, divisive issues to isolate people he detests, knowing it will invite a sharp response, and then using the response to scare his own base voters into thinking they are under assault when in fact they are on the offensive. That’s how moving to compel nuns to buy contraception and abortive drugs for their employees became “they’re trying to take away your birth control.” This strategy needlessly divides the country and brings out the worst instincts of people on all sides, but it has obvious benefits for the administration and its allies. Liberals get both the substantive action and the political benefit of calling their opponents radicals and getting their supporters worked up. Obama’s legalization of millions would surely draw a response that could then be depicted as evidence of Republican hostility to immigrants, rather than of Republican hostility to illegal executive overreach that tries to make highly significant policy changes outside the bounds of our constitutional order.
But while the legalization now being talked about fits into that pattern in a sense, the sheer scope of its overreach would put it in a different category as a practical matter…(read more)
[Also see Matt K. Lewis': Barack Obama has already checked out of his job]
“The degree to which Barack Obama is now phoning it in – sleepwalking perfunctorily through his second term, amid golf rounds and dinner parties – is astonishing…”
White House Officials: ‘Very Significant’ Immigration Executive Actions Needed for the ‘Survival of the Democratic Party’Posted: July 26, 2014
From The Butcher’s Notebook: White House officials said on Friday that President Barack Obama will enact “very significant” executive actions on immigration at the end of summer, “not because it’s good for America, but because it’s essential for the survival of the Democratic party.”
“American voters are beginning to figure out that progressive policies don’t work, because they’re not designed to work. There’s only so long we can get away with this before voters rebel, and special interest groups stop donating money. We can’t change American’s minds about this. We can’t win the argument, so we have to change the voters,” said a Democratic campaign official, speaking informally, on the condition of anonymity. “Can we get another drink over here?”
“The president assured us that pissing off Republicans is personally more important to him than policy success.”
“Look. We may not be able to change the voters overnight. But we can sure as hell accelerate the process, by granting citizenship to the Democratic voters of tomorrow,” adding “without it, the Democratic party has no hope in hell of surviving past the next twenty years.”
Sitting in a corner booth in the lounge of a Chinese restaurant in suburban Washington D.C., after a few lines of coke, a few tabs of MDMA, a few injections of sodium pentathol, and a fresh round of drinks–mistakenly assuming he was speaking off the record–the senior White House official ventured further.
“Democracy is a means to an end. You need it, temporarily, to get your party in power. Once you do that, you have the tools to undermine it, a stage at a time. Not all at once. Otherwise, people catch on.”
“Look. Our opponents are at a disadvantage, because they’re all hung up on ‘playing by the rules’. You know, the constitution, rule of law, separation of powers, all that idealistic, parchment-paper 18th-century crap. We’re not interested in ‘rules’, and ‘laws’. They are a barrier to our goal of accumulating power. That’s how the big boys did it, before the American revolution.” Read the rest of this entry »
[VIDEO] Krauthammer Closes the Lid: Gruber Video Is ‘Absolute Proof’ that Provision Was Not a Drafting ErrorPosted: July 25, 2014
“This is truly devastating.”
Charles Krauthammer thinks that a two-year-old video of one of Obama’s chief architects is proof that the denial of subsidies through federal exchanges was not a drafting error…
“This is absolute proof…It was a deliberate political strategy by the Democrats in drafting the law.”
…It is not the role “of any court to overturn an obvious provision in a law, simply because the strategy of those who drafted it didn’t succeed.”(read more)
Obama has attended three super PAC events in the past week. | AP Photo
The most transparent administration in history…
SAN FRANCISCO —For POLITICO.com, Dward-Isaac Dovere and Josh Gerstein report: President Barack Obama went to the West Coast to meet donors from two top Democratic super PACs, but the press wasn’t invited.
“We think these fundraisers ought to be open to at least some scrutiny, because the president’s participation in them is fundamentally public in nature.”
– Christi Parsons, the new president of the White House Correspondents’ Association
Tuesday, the reporters and photographers traveling with the president on Air Force One and in his motorcade were left on the gravel path not even within sight of former Costco CEO Jim Sinegal’s house in the Seattle suburbs where Obama sat for a Senate Majority PAC fundraiser with a $25,000 entrance fee.
“Denying access to him in that setting undermines the public’s ability to independently monitor and see what its government is doing.”
Wednesday morning, when he met with big donors for the House Majority PAC at the Four Seasons hotel in downtown San Francisco, they weren’t even told what room or floor he was on. Read the rest of this entry »
“He’s relying on the Europeans. The Europeans will never act. They never act on anything unless they’re led by the U.S.”
On Friday’s Special Report, Charles Krauthammer slammed Obama for the “unbelievable, passive nature” of his speech, which addressed the Malaysian airliner catastrophe in Eastern Ukraine. Reacting to yesterday’s news of the shooting down of the civilian plane – almost certainly at the hands of Russian-armed rebels – the president appeared disinterested, and ”practically half asleep.”
That response makes sense only if Obama believes that the events will necessarily go badly for Russia. However, Krauthammer contended, there is no reason to think that is true in the absence of American leadership….(read more) The Corner
WASHINGTON —For the NY Times, MICHAEL D. SHEAR, SOMINI SENGUPTA and SABRINA TAVERNISE reporting: President Obama said Friday that the United States believed the Malaysia Airlines jetliner felled over eastern Ukraine was shot down by a surface-to-air missile from an area inside Ukraine controlled by Russian-backed separatists.
Mr. Obama’s remarks at the White House were the strongest public suggestions yet from the United States over who was responsible for the downing of the jetliner, which exploded, crashed and burned on Thursday on farmland in eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people aboard.
Mr. Obama said the loss of life was an “outrage of unspeakable proportions” and a “global tragedy.” He vowed to investigate exactly what happened to end the lives of “men, women, children, infants who had nothing to do with the crisis” in that region. Mr. Obama also said that at least one American was among the dead.
“We are going to make sure the truth is out,” Mr. Obama said, referring to what he described as a trove of misinformation that has already shrouded the plane crash. Read the rest of this entry »
- Video: Pretty much everyone expressing dismay over White House response to world falling apart
- Video: Semi-retired president interrupts burger run to issue brief statement on plane being blown up
- BEAR IS LOOSE: Obama fundraises while Putin runs amok…
- KREMLIN: Putin ‘Informed’ Obama About Crash…
- REPORT: 23 Americans Killed…
- Obama gives crash 40 seconds before telling jokes…
- When Crisis Strikes, You Can Count On Obama To Grab A Delicious Snack
- Democrats are distancing themselves from our detached, unpopular president
President Barack Obama styles himself a wit, and some of his best material lately has to do with his abuse of his powers.
“Middle-class families can’t wait for Republicans in Congress to do stuff,” Obama told a crowd on the Georgetown Waterfront on July 1. “So sue me.” Hilarity ensued.
He cracked them up in Austin last week. “You hear some of them,” he said, referring to Republicans, “‘sue him,’ ‘impeach him.’ Really? Really? For what? You’re going to sue me for doing my job?”
He must have killed in a private meeting last month with activists who were pushing him to waive more immigration laws. According to POLITICO, the president resorted to one his favorite comic riffs: “You’re not going to get me impeached, are you?”
One can only imagine the comedic possibilities in his 9-0 defeat in the Supreme Court in June for his blatantly abusive recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board or any of the court’s other recent unanimous rebukes of his executive overreach.
It takes a truly blithe spirit to play the constitutional deformation of his office, and the ensuing congressional reaction, for laughs…(more)
“What is the president’s reaction? You say what matters is not where he is. He’s had no reaction — he’s had no reaction to anything that I can tell in the last six months.”
– Charles Krauthammer
Via The Corner: Charles Krauthammer harshly criticized President Barack Obama for his reaction, or lack thereof, to the news that an airliner was shot down in Ukraine today. The president needs to ”make a damned decision for once in his life,” Krauthammer said, and agree to help arm the Ukrainian military.
“The rebels and the Russians are killing the Ukrainians in large numbers by shooting them out of the sky. The least the president can do is . . . announce that we are now going to supply lethal weapons to assist the Ukrainians in defending themselves..”
“What is the president’s reaction?” Krauthammer asked fellow panelist Juan Williams, who expressed skepticism that the president’s continuing with his normal schedule today was blameworthy…(read more)
The summer when America fell apart
When I read that opening sentence, I thought – finally, someone’s on the same page. When we began this ongoing theme – The Global Panic of July 2014 – it was meant as a joke, dark humor to survive the seemingly endless cascade of bad news. But it’s also an amplified recognition of reality; increasing disorder and dysfunction, nationally and internationally. Mixed with breathtaking technological advances, with the promise of more economic disruption to come. From 9/11 until now, we are witnessing a disintegration of the post-war world order. This summer marks even more global instability. Things are unravelling at a faster pace than even my most pessimistic colleagues have suggested. A historic turning point? If so, Victor Davis Hanson‘s an informed tour guide. Read the whole thing here.
Germany in 2008 enthusiastically hosted candidate Barack Obama for his so-called “Victory Column” speech. Now, Germans suddenly sound as if they are near-enemies of the U.S. Chancellor Angela Merkel reportedly was furious that her cell phone was tapped by American intelligence agents.
“Asian powers apparently assume that Obama won’t guarantee the security of the Japanese as America had in the past.”
She just kicked the top CIA official out of Germany, further enraged that the U.S. had recruited at least one German official to provide intelligence on the German government. Polls show that Germans find Vladimir Putin’s Russian tyranny almost as popular as Barack Obama’s America. Read the rest of this entry »
GLOBAL PANIC OF JULY 2014 UPDATE: President Obama Plans 16-Day Martha’s Vineyard Vacation on $12m EstatePosted: July 16, 2014
For the WashingtonExaminer, Paul Bedard reports: It’s going to be hot tubs, basketball, tennis and golf for the first family this summer, having set plans for a 16-day vacation in Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., on a $12 million, 10-acre forested estate on the southwestern corner of the island.
Reports from the Bay State indicate that President Obama and his family will vacation August 9-24 at the 8,100-square foot, beachfront home of a Democratic donor that includes a pool, hot tub, basketball and tennis court.
Mad Martha’s Ice Cream last year developed a new flavor called “Barack My World,” espresso ice cream, macadamia nuts and caramel
It will be new digs for the first family, who have summered on tony Martha’s Vineyard every year of Obama’s presidency, except in 2012 when he was running for reelection.
Obama is expected to be accompanied by top aide Valerie Jarrett, a regular summer resident of Oak Bluffs
The Hammer on Iranian Nuclear Program Negotiations: Obama Administration wants to ‘Come Up with a Fig Leaf of a Deal’Posted: July 16, 2014
Charles Krauthammer last night said that the Obama administration and Iran will agree to continue talks about the latter’s nuclear program this week because the administration wants to “come up with a fig leaf of a deal.”