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The Sun-Times - Heber Springs, AR
  • Paul Rawlings: Republican record

  • Republicans by their own admissions engage in political campaigns of “naked cruelty”
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  • “We fell in love with power.  We spent way too much money—especially on earmarks.  There was too much corruption when we ran the place.  We were guilty.”
     
    Is that a quote of the President Republicans gleefully refer to as “liberal”  “tax and spend”  “big government” “socialist” “Communist”  “Muslim”  “raghead” etc?
     
    Is that a statement from someone Republicans would describe as a  “liberal” Harvard professor who had evaluated the George W. Bush years in the White House when Republicans controlled Congress ?
     
    Is that a statement from a source Republican’s would describe as the “liberal media” describing the George W. Bush administration when Republicans controlled Congress?
     
    Is that the statement from someone Republicans would describe as a “big government tax and spend liberal Democrat?”
     
    NO—that is a Republican describing what WE REPUBLICANS did when George W. Bush was in the White House when WE REPUBLICANS were in control of  Congress under REPUBLICAN LEADERS McCONNELL AND BOEHNER.   This is a statement of Eric Cantor Republican House Leader one of the WE REPUBLICANS who were in control of Congress when Bush was in the White House!!!
     
    When President Obama was elected in 2008 many Republican leaders were quoted as saying “ I hope Obama fails” and Mitch McConnell said his “number one priority was to make President Obama a one term President.  For the next 4 years Republicans did everything they could to make President Obama fail.
     
    From the time George Washington was President until the end of President Gerald Ford’s term in 1977 there had never been a filibuster of a Presidential nominee for the judiciary or other office which required a cloture vote.  From the time of President Carter 1977 till the end of George W. Bush’s term in 2009 there were 20 cloture votes on Presidential nominees.  In the first 4 years of President Obama term Republicans forced 16 cloture votes on his nominees!!
     
    During the time President Obama has been in office the time it takes to confirm circuit and district court nominees has skyrocketed.  President Obama has made 212 nominations for circuit and district court judges who waited on average 224 days until their confirmation process began in the Senate. 
     
    When the United States Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was created in 2011 over objections of Republicans 44 of the 46 Republican Senators signed a letter to President Obama BEFORE HE HAD NOMINATED ANYONE TO BE DIRECTOR OF THAT AGENCY saying “they would refuse to vote for anyone as director.”
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    On July 17, 2011 President Obama announced the appointment of Richard Cordray as director of the United States Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  44 Republican Senators under the leadership of Mitch McConnell, as promised in their letter, have prevented a vote on Mr. Cordray’s appointment.
     
    Other nominees of  President Obama some of which Republicans have blocked from a vote  for more than two years Richard Griffin and Sharon Block  to the National Labor  
    Relations Board, Fred Hochberg as President of the Export-Import Bank of the U.S., Tom Perez as Labor Secretary,  Gina McCarthy as head of the EPA and many others.
     
    Republican Senators Roberts, Moran, Cornyn, Cruz, McCain and Flake have allowed judicial vacancies to exist in their states more than 3 years without recommending potential judges to President Obama. 
     
    As a result of Republican obstruction 36 judicial vacancies, some for more than 3 years, have not been filled, and in some cases the number of cases assigned per panel of judges exceeds 700 which overload causes undue delay in the disposition of cases for many months and sometimes years.
     
    Lee Atwater a Republican political consultant successfully managed hundreds of  Republican “hate fear and divide” campaigns including 5 Presidential campaigns. When Atwater realized he was dying with cancer he issued a number of public written statements apologizing for his “naked cruelty” in those campaigns. In an article in Life magazine in February 1991 Atwater stated:  “My illness helped me to see that what was missing in society is what was missing in me: “a little heart, a lot of brotherhood.”
     
    In summary Republicans by their own admissions engage in political campaigns of “naked cruelty,”  when George W Bush occupied  the White House and Republicans controlled Congress they  “fell in love with power” “spent way too much money” and there was “too much corruption.”   
     
    Although Republicans lost the White House and Senate at the ballot box in 2012 they have engaged in activities that prevent President Obama and the Senate from doing what the people’s elected them to do and in effect are trying to overturn the results of the last election.
     
    What is missing from the Republican record of political activities —“a littler heart, a lot of brotherhood.”
     
    (Paul Rawlings of Heber Springs contributes monthly to the editorial pages of The Sun-Times)
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