White House report vindicates President Obama’s regulatory agenda

One of the so-called pillars of conservatism is fervent resistance to change; like very unpleasant toddlers and petulant pre-teens. Republicans have never forgotten some progressive changes going back 80 years to the New Deal and they are still vehemently resisting those changes to the point of attempting to abolish them today.

What appears to rankle Republicans specifically is the very concept of the federal government regulating anything whatsoever, but particularly if it is a means of protecting Americans from the rich and powerful. Republicans particularly despise, and have resisted “vehemently,” any kind of regulations affecting the financial, energy, and commercial sector, or generally what Americans know as corporate America.

Republicans never fail to cite two specific economic reasons why they say regulations are an immoral act of federal government overreach,but their assertions have been disproven on a regular basis. Now the Trump White House has “quietly” joined the debunking effort.

As it turns out, according to a report from the Trump administration’s Office of Management and Budget, Obama era regulations were not “job-killing” or economic disasters like Trump and Republicans contend. And, those federal regulations definitely produced a far greater economic benefit than they cost. Remember, this is the Trump administrations’ Office of Management and Budget vindicating President Obama’s regulatory agenda; it is not “fake news” or part of a liberal media conspiracy. Everything Trump and Republicans have asserted or still claim about President Obama’s regulations, or regulations in general, is fake news and typical Republican lies.

No doubt when the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released its “annual report” late last week amid a rash of Trump scandals, they were taking advantage of the typical Trump weekend outrages. A Trump administration report titled “Report to Congress on the benefits and Costs of Federal Regulations and Agency Compliance with the Unfunded Mandates Act”  is certainly not something Trump or his Republican cohort ever want the public to learn about. Specifically because they would learn, from Trump’s administration, that Republicans, Trump, the Kochs, ALEC, and the Heritage Foundation have been blatantly lying about “regulations as a general matter and wrong about President Obama’s regulations specifically.”

Those regulations, incidentally, “had benefits far in excess of their costs with no discernible effect on jobs or growth.” That last part, jobs and growth, was easily substantiated prior to the OMB report based on years of “regular job and economic growth” numbers during President Obama’s tenure. And all the while, Republicans screamed that President Obama’s regulations were killing jobs, retarding economic growth, and costing the American people dearly. However, according to the Trump OMB’s own reporting, the negative assertions from Republicans and Trump are patently false; particularly the false claims that the Obama regulations were killing jobs, the economy, and corporations.

The OMB analyzed data on all “major” federal regulations between 2006 and 2016 to produce a report founded on empirical data, not typical Heritage Foundation or Republicans’ “fake news.” Major federal regulations are considered those with $100 million or more in economic impact.

The aggregate costs of Obama era-regulations were “$59 to $88 billion” according to the federal agencies the OMB gathered data from. No matter how conservative of an estimate one makes, the $219 to $695 billion in benefits “wildly outweighed the costs” of federal regulations. What that means is that all of the Republican and Trump arguments against Obama Administration regulations, “arguably the organizing principle of Trump’s administration,” are demonstrably false; or in street parlance – filthy lies.

Any half sane American was aware Trump and Republicans’ assertions about President Obama’s regulations were false without a Trump OMB report. Like Republicans and Trump, most Americans heard reports about, or saw for themselves, the monthly job and economic growth reports proving that regulations were not bad for the economy. They were also not bad for “ordinary Americans” who benefitted from their enactment.

It is noteworthy to mention that environmental regulations, “specifically air pollution regulations” did in fact have the highest costs. However, they also have had the highest benefits exceeding those costs significantly. And it is particularly noteworthy that those “higher benefits” went to help the “ordinary American people” economically; but more crucially, it benefitted them with better health and longer lives.

David Roberts framed the issue of “regulatory costs versus benefits” in a very interesting way that informs another reason Republicans and Trump opposed President Obama’s environmental regulations. He wrote:

Air quality regulations serve as a downward redistribution of wealth, out of the pockets of industrialists and into the pockets of ordinary Americans, particularly the poor and vulnerable Americans (African Americans and Hispanics in particular) who tend to live closest to pollution sources. They shift costs, from the much higher health and social costs of pollution remediation to the comparatively smaller costs of pollution abatement.”

It didn’t take a Trump OMB report to “vindicate” President Obama’s regulatory agenda because the economy prospered and a record number of jobs were created in the midst of what Republicans claimed were deliberately cruel job and economy-killing regulations.

For example, the economy gained a net 11.6 million jobs; the unemployment rate dropped to below the historical norm; average weekly earnings for all workers were up 4.1 percent; after-tax corporate profits set new records, as did stock prices. It was nearly the same case during the Clinton Administration when the economy soared in spite of increased regulations, and like during the Clinton Administration,  those Obama regulations were accompanied by a slight tax hike on the very rich. Still, the economy grew, unemployment declined, corporations prospered, and the very rich became very much richer; and as a bonus American lives were saved.

Of course by now most Americans should be cognizant that Republicans and Trump exist solely to serve the rich and that includes giving the wealth of the nation, including the Treasury, to the already rich. But the only important way to frame this issue is that regulations save American lives.

The real story here, and the narrative for Democrats heading into the midterm elections, is that despite Obama’s regulations providing significantly more benefits than they cost, including a growing economy, Republicans and Trump have been eliminating them regardless of the harm to the people. Republicans are well aware that air pollution alone is responsible for killing over 200,000 Americans annually (in 2013), and yet with Trump’s assistance they have laid waste to 67 environmental rules in less than a year.

The message to the American people is not solely that Republicans and Trump are abolishing specifically environmental regulations that are economically beneficial and combat anthropogenic climate change; the message is that they are purposely eliminating regulations that save hundreds of thousands of American lives – all to enrich their wealthy corporate donors. If nothing else, it debunks their so-called “pro-life” status and should disabuse their base of any idea that either Republicans or Trump care if they live or die.

It is remarkable that President Obama’s regulatory agenda is now “officially vindicated” by the Trump’s own OMB, but it is noteworthy that unlike Republicans and Trump, President Obama’s actions were specific to saving Americans’ lives; something Trump or his Republican cohorts would never consider. In fact, they have demonstrated beyond dispute that they will kill American citizens by the tens-of-thousands to enrich their corporate masters.

Under Obama Middle Class Income Reached Highest Level Ever In 2016

It should be no great revelation to any American that the racist Donald Trump has a fixation with attempting to undo everything President Obama accomplished during his 8-year tenure in the White House. Instead, all he has accomplished is shining a spotlight on everything good and right Barack Obama did for all Americans. Whether it was providing access to healthcare for tens-of-millions of Americans, protecting the environment, defending the people from corporate and economic malfeasance, or extending civil and equal rights to all the people, President Obama’s record of serving the people cannot be “erased;” not by congressional repeal efforts or executive orders.

Now there is another major accomplishment that Trump has to grieve over and since it is now part of  a federal government agency’s permanent record, there is no way the Oval Office con man can take credit for something his superior predecessor accomplished or “executive order” it out of existence.

According to the constitutionally-mandated U.S. Census Bureau,  a report details that in 2016 middle class income rose to its “highest level ever.” It is a statistic and accomplishment that dirty Don Trump can never take credit for or erase by virtue of an executive order. That wasn’t the only good news in the Census, but it is a remarkable achievement considering that President Obama inherited a Republican-created economic disaster and subsequent recession that resulted in nearly 8 million jobs lost due to Republican economic incompetence.

Today, the national unemployment rate is hovering around 4.4 percent (in August) which is approximately what it was prior to the Bush-Republican-created financial crisis and Great Recession. In July, enough jobs were generated to officially restore “national employment to where it stood in 2007” before the Republican recession started. Trump gets no credit for that employment achievement because in the same manner President Obama inherited an economic disaster put in place by the Bush administration the previous year, Trump inherited President Obama’s economic growth that is still ongoing.

According to the Census Bureau’s report on “Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States, 2016,” median household income rose to $59,039 in 2016. That is a 3.2 percent increase from the previous year (2015) and the “second consecutive year of healthy income gains” for working people. What that means is it took 8 long years to correct the previous 8 years of the Bush-Republican economic mess and it was despite a wall of Republican opposition against any and every thing President Obama attempted.

President Obama’s income and employment gains back to pre-recession levels are not the only good news. The national poverty rate also fell to about the same level it was in 2007 prior to the Republican financial crisis and Great Recession that continued to hurt the workforce for several years after the recession’s damage was done.

The 2016 data accompanied another census report revealing that “the rate of Americans lacking health insurance was at its lowest ever in 2016.” Of course that is due in great part to President Obama’s healthcare reform law, but it also strongly implies that the American people overall “were actually in a position of increasing financial strength;” higher incomes and all.  And all of these Obama-era income gains and economic growth were occurring at the same time the main stream media and conservative punditry were errantly reporting that Trump “tapped into the population’s anger about the economy” giving him a victory in November.

That narrative is blatantly false and only imbeciles ever believed it was the case. The only thing Trump tapped into was roiling racism and religious bigotry by white people; what the experts call “social anxiety.” The Census report proves that people were working more and earning more, including Trump supporters. The people who voted for Trump did so because he promised get rid of Mexicans and Muslims and empower the religious right’s theocratic crusade; it’s what they considered necessary to “make America great.”

The good news in the Census report was that the 3.2 percent income increase extended to almost every demographic group; a major factor in making the median household income the highest on record.  The previous high mark was in 1999 at the end of the last Democratic President’s administration and similarly to President Obama, Bill Clinton spent 8 years reversing his Republican predecessor’s dismal economic record with sound economic policies Bush Republicans immediately reversed; not unlike Trump Republicans are doing now.

Despite that good economic news in the Census report, there is some seriously sobering news to neutralize it. Besides reversing, or attempting to reverse the Obama-era policies that increased Americans’ income, put more people to work, reduced poverty, and provided access to healthcare coverage for more Americans, Trump intends to double down on the typical economy-ravaging policies that caused the 2007-2008 financial crisis and Great Recession. In the upcoming tax-cutting and deregulation crusade Republicans and Trump promise, they will not be erasing President Barack Obama’s legacy or accomplishments, Trump will do like his Republican predecessors and erase the economic growth and leave a gigantic economic mess for another Democratic president to repair; it is the American way.

GOP Leaders Reverse Course on President Obama’s DACA

Regardless of what Republicans said and how much they bemoaned and criticized President Barack Obama’s agenda and policies, they know he was fundamentally right nearly all the time because he governed from a centrist position and always for the benefit of the people; it is why he easily won two consecutive presidential elections. Interestingly, Republican leaders are now supporting an Obama immigration policy they screamed like banshees was an atrocity, and an abuse of his executive power, and they are using Obama’s reasoning to convince their racist hero Trump to preserve the immigration executive order protecting the so-called “Dreamers.”

Americans have been hearing that Trump is on the verge of canceling President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. DACA allows “undocumented” immigrants who were brought to America as children avoid deportation and acquire work permits. A move by Trump to end DACA will not go over well with the public, or the business community, and now it is not going over well with leading Republicans. Most Americans believe that undocumented children who were hauled over the border by their parents through no fault of their own and have no legal or criminal issues in their records should be shown compassion and allowed to stay, work and thrive in America.

In fact, the business sector employing roughly 800,000 people authorized to work through DACA are opposed to Trump ending DACA, and it is most likely that they are putting pressure on “business friendly” Republicans to rein in Trump’s threat to end the program. On Friday, the business sector pressure to save DACA apparently inspired two “prominent Republican” legislators to publicly appeal to Trump to allow Congress to come up with a long-term resolution to DACA instead of canceling it unconditionally.

One of the prominent Republicans was House Speaker Paul Ryan who, after criticizing President Obama for initiating the program, actually used President Obama’s exact reasoning for creating it in the first place. Ryan said regarding Trump’s threat to eliminate DACA and deport at least 800,000 people:

“I don’t think he should do that. This is something Congress has to fix. President Obama did not have the authority to do what he did. Having said all that there are people who are in limbo. These are kids who know no other country, who were brought here by their parents and don’t know another home. So I really do believe there needs to be a legislative solution, that’s one we’re working on, and I think we want to give people piece of mind. I think the president Trump ‘mentioned’ a humane solution to this problem, and I think that’s something we in Congress are working on and need to deliver on.”

Now, if Ryan really believes his own sophistry about DACA being something Congress has to fix, then why did Republicans in Congress throw a fit when President Obama appealed to them to “do something” to fix the problem? And why did they work tirelessly to defeat “the Dream Act” that would have eliminated any need for a Presidential executive order? For dog’s sake, President Obama’s executive order creating DACA was in June 2012 and Republicans have had over five years to “do something to fix” it with a permanent solution; including re-introducing and passing the Dream Act.

Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) reiterated Ryan’s appeal to Trump, and used President Obama’s reasoning for “providing a workable path forward for the ‘Dreamer’ population.” Hatch said in a statement:

“I’ve urged the president Trump not to rescind DACA, an action that would further complicate a system in serious need of a ‘permanent legislative solution.’ Like the president Trump, I’ve long advocated for tougher enforcement of our existing immigration laws. But we also need a workable, permanent solution for individuals who entered our country unlawfully as children through no fault of their own and who have built their lives here. And that solution must come from Congress. Over the coming months, I’ll be working closely with my colleagues in Congress to pass meaningful immigration reform … that will provide a workable path forward for the Dreamer population, and ensure that employers have access to the high-skilled workers they need to succeed.”

The same question that Paul Ryan must be compelled to answer applies to Orrin Hatch; why did Republicans in Congress vote against the Dream Act on at least three separate occasions over several years? Nothing changed for the undocumented immigrants who were brought here as children “through no fault of their own, are in limbo, know no other country, and don’t know another home.”

It is noteworthy that Hatch was a co-sponsor of the bill’s first iteration in 2001, and that five Democrats joined Republicans in voting against the last version in 2011. But the point is that if it is so important to Republicans now for Trump to allow Congress to pass a version of the Dream Act as a permanent solution to DACA, it is glaringly apparent that the only reason Republicans opposed it when President Obama appealed to their compassionate side was because it was President Obama.

It was also reported that Tennessee’s Republican Attorney General, Herbert H. Slavery III, had signed on to an “ultimatumletter with nine other GOP attorneys general and one Republican governor warning Trump that if he failed to kill DACA by September 5, they would “sue to block it in court.” However, yesterday, Friday, Slatery “publicly withdrew his demand” and urged Trump to not only keep DACA in place, but to work with Congress to protect young undocumented immigrants.

In a letter to Tennessee’s two Republican senators, Slatery wrote, in part:

Many of the DACA recipients, some of whose records I reviewed, have outstanding accomplishments and laudable ambitions, which if achieved, will be of great benefit and service to our country. They have an appreciation for the opportunities afforded them by our country. There is a human element to this …  that is not lost on me and should not be ignored.”

It is nearly impossible to imagine Republicans have had a change of heart, and are serious about “the human element” in seeking a permanent fix for Dreamers; these are Republicans and they are bereft of compassion as a matter of course. It is more likely they were pressed by the business sector to publicly appeal to Trump to let them resolve the issue for the sake of profits, not compassion. They had several stellar opportunities over the course of several years to pass the Dream Act and avoid this DACA controversy altogether, particularly in 2011 when Barack Obama appealed to something they never display for the people, but have in abundance for their business special interests – compassion.

Corporate Giants Reject Trump – Recommit To President Obama’s Climate Policies



There is reason some of the largest corporations in the world are the largest corporations in the world and a good reason why they are highly successful and profitable. Because they are so successful, they tend to base business decisions on reality, and where applicable, sound science whether it is the science of economics or the climate. They certainly don’t make business decisions on what they imagine to be true or false, but that is what General Electric’s CEO Jeff Immelt stated Donald Trump is basing his war on the climate and environment on.

GE CEO Immelt said that Trump’s “imagination is at work” if he doesn’t believe in climate change science or the Paris agreement that President Barack Obama signed onto before he left office. Mr. Immelt said that GE  is going forward with the corporate giant’s plan to fight climate change and wants to lead the corporate world to in the war to slow global climate change. And, Mr. Immelt called on other corporate giants to “step up to fill the void that the [Trump] administration is leaving behind.”

Companies must be resilient and learn to adjust to political volatility all over the world. Companies must have their own ‘foreign policy’ and create technology and solutions that address local needs for our customers and society.”

Mr. Immelt’s comments were aimed at the Trump’s executive orderrolling back Obama-era energy regulations.” Mr. Immelt said that the General Electric’s incorporation of green technology was made in response to “well accepted” climate change science. He also said the corporate giant’s implementation of green technologies  has already had a “demonstrable effect both on environmental protection and on improving company profits.”

We believe climate change should be addressed on a global basis through multi-national agreements, such as the Paris Agreement. We hope that the United States continues to play a constructive role in furthering solutions to these challenges, and at GE, we will continue to lead with our technology and actions.”

According to a report in Bloomberg Politics, Mr. Immelt’s intent for GE to lead with technology and actions is going to be a monumentally concerted effort with “some of America’s biggest corporations already vowing to stick to the environmental pledges they made to President Obama.

For example, Walmart, has already vowed to get half of its power from renewable energy sources by 2025 and it is as more of a profit-oriented decision than it is an effort to combat climate change and protect the environment; although that is part of the goal. A Walmart spokesman, Kevin Gardner said:

This work is embedded in our business. [It’s] good for the business, our shareholders, and customers; if ultimately we are able to positively impact the environment in the process, that’s a win too.”

Walmart is joined by the largest beer company in the world, Anheuser-Busch InBev, that pledged the day after Trump’s executive order dismantling environmental protections “to get 100 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2025.”

Mars Inc, went even farther and pledged to “eliminate its emissions altogether by 2040;” a lofty goal indeed but one that can be achieved. The vice president of Mars Inc.’s corporate affairs, Andy Pharoah, said the candy giant is “disappointed the [Trump] administration has decided to roll back climate regulations.”

Some of the other corporate giants who pledged to stick to “the climate change promises they made to the Obama Administration;” Procter & Gamble, Nestle, Ikea, Levi Strauss & Co., and Best Buy are completely rejecting the Trump plan tp abandon environmental protections. Those corporate behemoths were joined by some seriously powerful corporate leaders who took the time to issue a joint statement in response to the Trump’s executive order wiping out President Obama’s efforts to combat climate change.

The world’s leading technology corporations Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, and Google’s parent company, Alphabet, wrote jointly that:

We believe that strong clean energy and climate policies, like the Clean Power Plan, can make renewable energy supplies more robust and address the serious threat of climate change while also supporting American competitiveness, innovation, and job growth.”

As Columbia Business School Professor Geoffrey M. Heal explained to Bloomberg Politics, “Most big companies in the U.S. recognize that climate change is real. They need to move ahead on the climate change front no matter what Trump’s government does.”

Trump claimed that dismantling climate change policies of the Obama Administration is what corporations and the people wanted and that “My action today is the latest in steps to grow American jobs.” However, that doesn’t square with what some of the largest corporations in America, and the world, are saying and likely why they are rejecting, as GE CEO Immelt said “Trump’s imagination at work.”

America’s largest corporations do believe in climate change science and that President Obama’s environmental policies not only “demonstrably effect environmental protection, [they] go a long way towards improving corporate profits.”


Bernie Sanders Will Ask President Obama to Withdraw His SCOTUS Nominee



Anyone who has ever been in a position of authority and responsibility, particularly over a large number of people, comprehends that there are very few decisions that will please everyone; it is just human nature. The idea of “pleasing everyone” becomes even more impossible in politics; especially when it is an Executive Branch decision, and particularly when one political party objects to every decision made by the sitting President.

President Obama likely knew that it wouldn’t have mattered who he nominated to replace Antonin Scalia as an associate justice to the nation’s highest court. In fact, he may not have been very surprised at the instantaneous assertion by Republicans in the Senate that they would not give a fair hearing to any nominee to the Supreme Court. By now, anyone with a pulse is aware that Republicans claim it is not within the current President’s constitutional right to nominate a Supreme Court justice and that it is the responsibility of the next president.

Now, it has been reported in the mainstream media everywhere that presidential candidate Bernie Sanders (I, D, VT) said that if he wins the Democratic nomination for president and the general election in November, he will ask President Obama to withdraw his Supreme Court justice nomination of Judge Merrick Garland. Apparently, Senator Sanders believes, like every Republican, that the decision to nominate the “right” kind of Supreme Court justice is better left to the next president; but only if it is Bernie Sanders.

Senator Sanders told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow that, “I think I’m 100 percent prepared to support Judge Garland. I think he’s clearly very knowledgeable and can serve ably on the Supreme Court. But, there are more progressive judges out there.” Sanders insists that any Supreme Court nominee would have to meet his litmus test that entails “being loud and clear that he or she will overturn the disastrous Citizens United Supreme Court decision.” So there it is again; expecting a prospective SCOTUS justice to publicly make a political pledge to overturn a prior Court decision that is not before the court as if there is not a regular established process for the nation’s High Court to hear a case.

Likely surprised at the presidential candidate’s naïveté, and audacity, Sanders was asked specifically if he would directly ask President Obama to withdraw Judge Garland’s name, forsake his Constitutional authority and duty as President, to allow Bernie Sanders to nominate a judge because they pledged in advance to overturn a previous SCOTUS ruling; the Vermont senator said, “Yes I would.” Without conflating Senator Sanders’ remarks about him being better qualified to choose the “right” kind of nominee to Republican obstruction for obstruction’s sake, there are a couple of issues worth addressing.

First and foremost; the decision to nominate a prospective Justice is the purview of the current President; whoever wins the November election should not factor in to any Presidential consideration. Second, whoever the current or next president nominates will have to go through the intense and often combative Senate confirmation process. There may well be “more progressive” judges available for the nomination, but it is general knowledge that judges on the federal benches do not wear their politics on the sleeves. It is true all judges have political leanings, but part and parcel of being any kind of judge, much less a Supreme Court justice, is not being blatantly partisan; the deceased Scalia and Justice Clarence Thomas notwithstanding.

Putting aside the appearance of audacity and hubris of even expecting a sitting President to withdraw his Supreme Court nominee because he is not progressive enough for the as-yet-unelected or inaugurated next president, there is still a problem with expecting the High Court to overturn a previous decision on partisan political principle. It is an issue that came up a couple of months ago when Senator Sanders said in a Tweet that, “Any Supreme Court nominee of mine will make overturning Citizens United one of their first decisions.”

At first blush that statement reeks of ignorance of the federal judiciary, but it cannot be put down to some campaign underling tweeting out nonsense without Senator Sanders’ knowledge and approval. Last November Senator Sanders said the same thing; “No nominee of mine to the United States Supreme Court will get that job unless he or she is loud and clear that one of their first orders of business will be to overturn Citizens United.”

Senator Sanders is an establishment politician with a quarter century worth of experience in Congress and is very well aware of how the High Court works. Unlike the federal legislature that has the freedom to take up, or blow off, any issue at will, court cases must go through “numerous and lengthy procedural hoops before they can be heard or decided by any court.” This is particularly true of the nation’s highest Court by design of the U.S. Constitution. As noted several times by judicial experts and savvy eighth grade civics students alike; “it would be impossible for any Sanders’ nominee to the High Court to guarantee that any case would be one of their first orders of business and decisions;” especially as an “Associate Justice” on the nine-justice Supreme Court.

The U.S. Constitution contains two significant limits on the justices’ ability to set their own schedule in Article III. Article III limits the federal judiciary’s authority to “cases” or “controversies” that have long been understood to require that two parties that have a genuine conflict with each other before a federal court can intervene and settle the issue.

Even a super-duper newly-appointed progressive justice needs to follow Constitutional procedures and wait for the case they were “loud and clear about overturning” to go through the federal appellate court system. Any semi-knowledgeable civics student knows that “the Constitution provides that the Supreme Court only has appellate jurisdiction over the overwhelming majority of cases.” What that means is that the High Court justices, or one super progressive High Court Justice, cannot decide to consider a matter until after it has been decided and appealed by several lower courts.

What continues to be an unanswered question is exactly how Senator Sanders would convince hardline Republican senators to support and confirm a “more progressive judge” any more than they would support the “socialistic policies” Senator Sanders espouses. It is yet unclear how a different “Democratic” president will fare any better with Republicans in Congress than President Obama, but parroting “political revolution” is not going to be any more convincing or productive.

There are millions of Americans who want the disastrous Citizens United ruling overturned, just like there are a substantial number of evangelical fanatics who want Roe v. Wade overturned; but neither is going to happen because a prospective Supreme Court Justice pledges “loud and clear” that “one of their first orders of business is overturning” _________ (fill-in-the blank). What is also not going to happen is President Barack Obama withdrawing his nominee to replace Antonin Scalia on the High Court based on who wins the general election in November, or because Republicans want to make the choice.

No doubt there are more progressive and liberal judges ‘out there’ that the President could have nominated, but he chose a highly-qualified jurist that has a reasonable chance of being confirmed. What bothers many Democrats is that although Senator Sanders said he is certain he will support Merrick Garland’s nomination, “it is still surprising that a politician running for the Democratic presidential nomination has openly criticized the current Democratic president’s nominee.” What is really surprising is why any pundit is surprised that a politician running for the Democratic presidential nomination is still openly criticizing the current Democratic President at all.

A Real Democrat Would Not Criticize President Obama During A Primary Race



Anyone who is new to a group or an organization they have spent years assailing usually would lay low and refrain from attacking the group’s popular leader; at least if they expect to be embraced and regarded as someone who can contribute anything positive to the movement’s mission. One thing that most Americans comprehend, whether they are interested in and follow politics, or are members of a violent street gang, is that it is generally not a good idea to join up with an organization and then criticize its leader.

This screed has nothing to do with endorsing or criticizing any candidate for president; it is about being sick to death of hearing a “neophyte Democrat” parrot EmoProg criticism that President Barack Obama is a bad and ineffective leader. Although those were not Senator Bernie Sanders exact words, he did question the leadership skills of President Barack Obama and claimed that as a new Democrat he will close the “divide between government and Americans that President Obama opened wide throughout his presidency.”

It is curious that, like his EmoProg acolytes, Bernie Sanders is unaware that whatever “divide” he perceives exists between Americans and Congress is due to contrasting political ideology, racism, religious fundamentalism and Republicans; not President Barack Obama. President Obama is not a member of either chamber in Congress; he leads the Executive Branch of government. Besides, this latest claim that President Obama is divisive, or responsible for a gap between Americans and government, is a tired Republican accusation that does not carry any more weight coming from a Democrat than a Republican; even if it is a new Democrat.

The Vermont Senator said, “There’s a huge gap right now between Congress and the American people. What presidential leadership is about is closing that gap.” To be fair, he did acknowledge the President tried to bridge the divide, but he said Obama has failed and Bernie knows the reason why; “We need a political revolution bringing millions and millions of people into the political process in a way that does not exist right now.” So there it was; “blame the Black man” for not waving a magic wand and morphing Republicans in Congress, the Supreme Court, evangelical fanatics, and angry racists into Democrats; and for not bringing about political revolution.

This “political revolution” meme again; the one the Vermont senator confesses is necessary to fulfill the “free college and free healthcare” pledge he thinks Republicans in Congress and tens-of-millions of conservative voters will embrace with open arms. As John Lennon said regarding people who want a revolution; “We’d all love to see the plan.” And no, repeating that term “political revolution” ad nauseam is not a plan and  is not going to transform America’s conservative majority, or the Republican-dominated Congress, into a population that will embrace what Republicans will scream is “socialism and more free stuff.”

The divide Sanders believes President Obama failed to close between the American people and Congress is political, ideological and religious; something beyond the purview of a mere human being elected as President. Besides, it was millions of American people who put Republicans in charge of Congress with valuable assistance from the same EmoProg people who claim President Obama is a failure, a lousy progressive, and unable to “close the gap between the American people and Congress.”

A prescient question for the Sanders’ campaign is exactly how will the senator will “bridge the gap between the American people and Congress;” particularly when he has been ineffective in bridging the gap between Senate Republicans and Democrats, or Senate Democrats and himself. After all, in a quarter century or so in Congress a record of three bills signed into law does not speak favorably about any secret ability to  “close a gap” between ideological opposites; exactly the same situation that exists among the American people. The so-called “gap” between Congress and the voters is certainly not going to be bridged because Senator Sanders’ ideas are new or a revelation to the people; they are old ideas minority Democrats embrace and majority Republicans oppose vehemently.

President Obama has called for higher wages, money out of politics, wealth redistribution, and affordable college since before he was sworn into office. In fact, Joe the plumber became a right-wing celebrity because of an exchange between then-presidential candidate Obama and an “aspiring” plumbing contractor in 2008. The exchange was over candidate Obama’s pledge to address income inequality; specifically tax cuts and wealth redistribution. And, as a revelation to the senator’s “historically” ignorant EmoProg backers, Sanders’ opponent for the Democratic nomination crusaded for “universal healthcarein 1993 as First Lady. It is what began the nearly 24 year “vast right-wing conspiracy” against her and the same one many feeltheberns are aiding the Koch brothers and Karl Rove perpetuate today.

Perhaps it is naïveté, or ignorance, but Senator Sanders is not helping his case with Democrats who have been staunch supporters of President Obama. Senator Sanders’ criticism of the President in particular and Democrats in general is nothing new, but it is getting old and as damned irritating as EmoProgs and HamWalds attacking the President in 2009. If President Obama had been a catastrophic failure, one would understand a new Democrat attacking his policies, agenda, and missteps; but that has not been the case and up till now only Republicans, teabaggers, EmoProgs, racists, and religious fanatics don’t get it.

For most Democrats, President Obama has done a miraculous job in the face of the most extreme obstructionism and outright opposition likely ever in America’s history, and only Republicans, teabaggers, racists, religious fundamentalists and Sanders’ EmoProg movement disagree. Obama Democrats don’t like it when Republicans attack their President and it is curious that anyone would think it is acceptable when a Democrat does it; even if they are a new Democrat who seems to think they are running a campaign against Barack Obama.