Sunday, November 2, 2014

GOP Takes the Senate and Keeps the House: Then Expect What

He Wants Majority Seat
(I prefer concession speech)

Boehner Stays, McConnell Wins
(Man in the Middle and Country Lose)

I guarantee you this post is not hyperbole ... I loathe hyperbole. As Jack Webb (re: Sgt. Joe Friday on the old Dragnet show) would say, “Just the facts ma'am, just the facts.” 

Here are a few facts (I think) from those who track this stuff daily. Three good sources follow.

1. One headline is on a topic that I follow closely: Detainee treatment and torture and that darn Senate report we've been waiting for release of for months:  “If GOP Takes Senate, Expect the CIA Torture Report to Disappear”

That is a very strong possibility based on this: The new chair of the Senate Intelligence Committee (responsible for the report) would likely shift to Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), who has made it quite clear that he's on the CIA's team and against the public interest in the release of the report where in he has said:

“I personally don't believe that anything that goes on in the intelligence committee should ever be discussed publicly. If I had my way, with the exception of nominees, there would never be a public intelligence hearing.” (Burr told reporters in March).

It would also follow that Burr would try to muzzle Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Mark Udall (D-CO), both strong advocates for release and transparency of the report. Bloodbath does come to mind in that regard.

2.  In part from the Washington Post: “With multiple crises confronting the country — including the spread of Ebola in West Africa and cases here at home, as well as threats from Islamic State militants — a majority now says the government’s ability to deal with big problems has declined in the past few years. Among those who say this, more — by 3 to 1 — blame Obama and the Democrats rather than Republicans in Congress.

(I seriously note: That all seems kind of ass backwards, doesn’t it – I mean after all the turmoil, division, road blocking, and resistance by the GOP since Jan 20, 2009 – maybe hypocritical is a better word).

3.  A very good reminder and forecast from here, in part:

If there’s one thing that has epitomized the relationship between the White House and the Republican-controlled House over the past three and a half years, it has been the extent to which showdown politics has become a regular part of governing in Washington.

Less than six months after the GOP took control of the lower chamber of Congress, Washington was gripped by a showdown over the budget and the extension of the debt ceiling that lasted right up until the last minute and resulted in a deal that nobody really liked, but which supposedly would never really be implemented because of the “super committee” that would solve all our budget problems.

When that super committee failed, we ended up with budget cuts that nobody really liked and which ended up being the catalyst for further showdowns. We also saw showdowns over (1) the extension of the Bush tax cuts, (2) the end of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, and (3) pretty much every high profile nomination requiring Senate confirmation.  

Most famously, of course, the showdown strategy resulted last year in a 16-day government shutdown that only seemed to happen because the GOP leadership was outmaneuvered by a Tea Party that had decided that shutting down the government would be a good idea when every indication was saying otherwise.

The question to me is very simple and amounts to this: Will American voters do what is right and they know what that is; or, will they bend and fall prey to the slick campaign Ads, ugly and massive amounts of money this cycle, and the utter deceit and in some cases, downright lies and actually give the all the reins of power to the GOP?


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