A few networks aired a clip of President Barack Obama, eternal campaigner-in-chief, apparently claiming the GOP is counting on Americans to be forgetful when they head to the polls in the 2010 elections. ABC’s Jake Tapper said, “Speaking at a fundraiser hauling in $500,000 for the Democratic party today, President Obama said that the Republican party is ‘betting on amnesia’ going into the November election, as they have not had a ‘single, solitary’ new idea.”
And in what was really a defining moment, Obama said, “…the choice in the election is between going forward or going backward to the hurtful policies of the past.” Our president is banking on some steep odds.
Fact is, the Democrat Congress and Obama have supported a baseline Democrat Party agenda that rests on collectivism, redistribution of income and the status quo.
DEMOCRATS, TAXES AND SPENDING
Start with the tax increase Democrats are itching to pass.
The Heritage Foundation provided a backgrounder in 1993 as a response to President Bill Clinton’s ‘Higher Taxes and More Spending.’ Heritage Backgrounder No. 928 said, “..the Clinton budget signifies a significant increase in the size and cost of the federal government…A Joint Economic Committee report found that every dollar of higher taxes since 1947 has resulted in $1.59 of higher spending…Tax increases in 1982, 1984, 1987, and 1990 all were enacted for the alleged purpose of deficit reduction. In every case, however, the deficit rose the following year because lawmakers could not resist the temptation to spend the expected new revenues."
DEMOCRATS, FANNIE AND FREDDIE
Government sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have been problem-plagued for decades.
The Cato Institute said, “The administration has intentionally not incorporated Fannie and Freddie into the federal budget in order to hide the cost to taxpayers. And on Christmas Eve the administration quietly announced that the government would cover all of Fannie and Freddie’s losses beyond the original $400 billion limit through 2012. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the final cost to taxpayers for bailing out Fannie and Freddie will approach that figure, although Wallison [The Wall Street Journal] calls that projection ‘optimistic.’”
No Democrat has permitted anyone to do anything about these GSEs. Obama is no exception to that rule. Cato said, “…in 2005 then-Senator Obama joined with his Democratic colleagues in stopping legislation that would have helped rein in the government-sponsored housing duo’s risky behavior…”
Cato called the analysis ‘Obama’s Fannie and Freddie Amnesia.’
MISCELLANEOUS PARTY LINE MATTERS
Labor unions continue to fund and influence Democrats—that is a party tradition. Obama even put the former head of the Service Employees International Union on his fiscal/deficit commission. That commission should be called the ‘tax seekers.’
Climate change has been a front burner concern for Democrats for decades. First Democrats fretted over The Little Ice Age. They moved on to Global Warming. When the populace didn’t buy into that, they moved on to Climate Change, a phenomenon responsible for the presence of humans on the planet. Democrats have effectively spent hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars on weather.
Since Obama took office, he has expanded the federal government and, as Clinton was prone to do, apologized to the world for the alleged ills the U.S. has inflicted.
Obama has seized the theme of immigration, an issue as old as the country itself, and rather than concerning himself with national security and undocumented aliens, he has adopted the approach used so effectively in 1986—de facto amnesty. He has continued the practice of paying lip service to the undocumented alien issue.
In a recent column at The US Report, we wrote, “When the 1986 Amnesty Act was passed (Senate bill 1200), promises were implicit. The NY Times said, “President Ronald Reagan signed that bill into law with great fanfare amid promises that it would grant legal status to illegal immigrants, crack down on employers who hired illegal workers and secure the border once and for all. Instead, fraudulent applications tainted the process, many employers continued their illicit hiring practices, and illegal immigration surged.”
Reagan, as we know, dealt with a Democrat Congress.
Perhaps the most expensive party line matter is health insurance. Obama has continued the Democrat tradition of chipping away at the private market and if all aspects of Obamacare hold, those of us with private policies will pay more to subsidize the growing government market. Even the mandate for individuals is nothing new—Sec. of State Hillary Clinton aimed for that with HillaryCare when her husband was president.
One thing about Obama is new—he continues to campaign on a daily basis even though he won. And although he points a finger at Republicans every time he wants to score talking points, Democrats took control of Congress almost 4 years ago. Whatever the mess he “inherited,” his Party had a big hand in creating it.
I can’t prove or disprove whether the GOP has amnesia. This Republican doesn’t. Washington is Washington and all that ‘hope and change’ promised during the campaign remains as yet a promise unfulfilled.
Obama is counting on some steep odds in November.
Video: When Republicans were the majority in Congress and President George W. Bush was in office, Democrat Rep. Barney Frank (N.Y.) responded to GOP hopes for regulation over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Frank said the GSEs were "fundamentally sound," and he claimed even if they weren't, the federal government "does not bail them out." Frank's statement has been proven false.
(Commentary by Kay B. Day/ Aug. 5, 2010)