Posts Tagged ‘Congress’

THE CASE FOR LINE ITEM VETO

April 27, 2020

A quick bit of history to preface the need for the above title. In 1996, Bob Dole introduced the Line Item Veto Act that passed both the House and Senate and was signed into law by Bill Clinton on Nov. 5, 1996. The Act gave the president exactly the powers that a president should and must have. It allowed for the president to reject items in a bill that were not required for the bill to be reasonable and viable on it’s own.

The Supreme Court ruled in 1998 that line item veto gave the president (in that case William Jefferson Clinton who had signed the bill into law) unwarranted powers. The majority opinion at that time was, the president was required to approve or reject whole legislation and that the Line Item Veto Act allowed the president to “amend” legislation, which was an assault on the powers given to Congress under Article I.

As written, the majority opinion is correct. It would allow any president the opportunity to accept or reject any part or parts of any spending bill that he or she chose. However, the president still doesn’t have the final say on any legislation. Even when the president eliminates portions of a bill before signing, the product must then go back to the Senate for final approval or rejection. Thus, the president does not unilaterally amend the legislation, he or she only offers amendments for legislative body review. The Senate and House can accept, reject or offer further amendments then present the product to the president once again.

In 1998, however, the congress did not include such things as an $80 million study to identify “The Truth About how many Toads can be Handled by people before Warts Appear (TTATHWA)” in emergency spending bills to give relief to hurricane or flood victims. They did not include “federal security for Gated COMmunities (GCOM)” within their districts in bills directed at terrorism abroad.

Paying homage to Rahm “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste” Emanuel, congress has taken advantage of the court ruling by interjecting personal preference spending on pet projects that help the members win re-election campaigns. Knowing that the wholesale rejection of an “emergency relief” bill in a time of crisis would damage this president, majority congressional leaders made sure to include every previously lobbied project into the emergency relief to replace lost income due to the Coronavirus. And, in preparation of possible rejection, party leaders wrote damning speeches for media airing and publication well in advance of sending the bills to the presidential desk. Given that President Trump signed the ridiculous all inclusive spending bill, they will keep the boilerplate letters and speeches in archive for future use.

There was definitely a need for immediate financial relief to workers, but President Trump is where the buck stops when blaming begins on this one. Line item veto power would have saved billions of dollars to direct where truly needed.

With a majority in the House, these Utopian desires could be written as stand-alone bills. They might be written in a few pages that could be read, digested and understood before voting on them. However, in order for any hope of becoming part of the makeup of the U.S., they must be concealed in multi-hundred page documents that are rarely read before voting is called. If they were good, valid and useful additions to American society the authors would gladly accept recognition for his/her contributions. This is not the way our government was meant to operate. Let us hope that there is another argument brought before the Supreme Court to consider line item veto authority for the president.

THE TRIAL WAS RIGGED

February 12, 2020

Even now, a week beyond the impeachment trial of Donald John Trump, there is ongoing banter about how he was “Impeached Forever”. The impeachment had the affect of ending a losing argument with “You’re a Racist”. It was false, and though the vile and viscous Democrats of the House did manage to muddle their way through and reach a predetermined and patently partisan consensus vote on loosely written Articles of Impeachment, they continue to try wiping the egg from their faces forever creviced with anger.

Crazy Mazie Hirono of Hawaii stated on CNN that President Trump was not acquitted of the Articles of Impeachment. “He wasn’t acquitted; it was a rigged trial”, she said.

Doubling down on stupid, she prattled on, “You don’t get acquitted when you don’t even get to call witnesses or relevant witnesses or have the documents because the president stonewalled all efforts on the part of the House to get the information they requested.”

It’s as if the Democrats, in their never ending attempts to destroy Donald Trump and all future presidencies, are so blinded with hatred they cannot even see their own reflections in a mirror. If it was a rigged trial it was most certainly a rigged indictment. The president’s attorneys followed the law when asking the courts for confirmation of need and appropriateness of the requested documents. It was his only available defense because he was not allowed representation during the House hearings. He was not allowed any rebuttal witnesses and, of those witnesses called by the prosecuting body, none had direct knowledge of any wrong doing. What was presented was all hearsay or secondary water cooler repetition.

Each and every witness, with the exception of only one, was a confirmed Never-Trumper and/or a diplomat who felt they were in charge of foreign policy rather than the Chief Executive. The one honest and knowledgeable voice was legal scholar and law professor, Jonathan Turley. In his opening statement, Turley offered that he is not a Trump supporter and, in fact, had voted against him. He shocked the panel when he gave honest historic testimony regarding the dangers of impeachment under the prescribed conditions and damage it would cause to future presidencies and to the Constitution. They denied and disregarded his testimony.

When questioned directly by Republican members, all witnesses agreed they were aware of no crimes committed by, or on behalf of, the president. Other than Turley’s, the “testimonies” included mind-reading and personal interpretations illustrating bias of what was said or what actually occurred.

So, if the Senate trial of Donald John Trump was “rigged” as declared by the Honorable Ms. Hirono, the basis for the Articles brought forth to the Senate were certainly flawed and essentially rigged by the proceedings within the House.

Let us be clear. The Impeachment of President Trump had nothing to do with “High Crimes or Misdemeanors” as described in the Constitution or abuse of power or obstruction of Congress. It was all about anger and frustration. The Democrat’s only position of power is having a majority in the House of Representatives at the present and they chose to abuse that position. Their anger is now deep seated and the frustration over the election loss of 2016 combined with the gaining of congressional seats in 2018 should not be a basis for destroying our nation.

These are the very angry Democrats seeking the next presidency. It is unimaginable how much destruction might be caused with such a resentful and vindictive figure in the White House.

NEWS ALERT: HOW LIES BECOME TRUTHS

July 18, 2019

We hear what we want to hear, see what we want to see and accept what we choose to accept. Or, as with the quote often attributed to Marcus Aurelius, “Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth”.

It is becoming all too common. A statement, a tweet or gesture is taken out of context and spread across social media until it seeps into the realm of traditional media. If not prior, it then becomes the truth that many seek. The repetition makes it undeniable. It’s real. It happened, I read/saw it everywhere!

Because “somebody did something” some time ago, it is easy to conflate that happening to a glance, a phrase or motion giving it a meaning never meant. It is a ploy used effectively throughout our daily lives and is profoundly used by the main stream media and politicians.

While conflation for effect is used by both sides of the political aisle, it is used most frequently by the left and the far left. If you don’t believe what I say or act the way I believe is correct it’s because you’re a RACIST.

At Judge Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation hearing, a former clerk, sitting behind him, made a movement with her right hand. To Trump haters, this was a display of the White Power symbol. To some, it was a showing of “OK” as if she was agreeing with his answer or with the proceedings. To others she was simply scratching her left arm.

Michelle Obama: “All this for a Damn flag”, was accepted as a true lip reading at 9/11 commemoration ceremony and it became fodder for hatred of the first lady. It gained authenticity as the video and interpretation made the rounds. Nobody other than Michelle and Barack knows for sure what she actually said.

Go back to your country has been used so many times it has the same affect as calling somebody racist…none. Therefore, it can be used as a point of conflation when necessary.

Last Sunday, President Trump aired his frustration with four Democrat freshmen in a tweet. The actual tweet: “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”

There was no reference or inference to their sex, heritage, race, ethnicity or national origin. There was no mention of any country yet the distorted version which is so prevalent is “Go back to their countries and fix their governments”. For effect, the Trump haters across the nation, in congress, in cyber, on air and in columns and “actual” news stories have conflated this tweet with a familiar admonishment.

The “Squad” to whom President referred in his tweet consists of:

Ilhan Omar – Minneapolis, MN – poverty rate for Minneapolis is +/- 22% compared to MN over all rate of 10.2%. 109% higher than the national average. For every 100,000 people, there are 15.73 daily crimes that occur in Minneapolis making it less safe than 97% of the cities in the United States. In Minneapolis you have a 1 in 18 chance of becoming a victim of a crime on any given day.

Ayanna Pressley – MA 7th district – Boston. A very diverse population. Poverty is 18.7% or 1.5 times the rate of MA and 1.4 times the national rate. Violent crime is 87.66% higher than the state of Massachusetts and 78.15% higher than national crime rate.

Alexandrea Ocasia-Cortez – Bronx/Queens, New York. 1.7 Million people (52% of her district’s population) lives below the poverty threshold. Chances of being a victim of violent crime is almost 3 times greater than anywhere else in New York State.

Rashida Tlaib – MI 13th dist. Includes half of Detroit. Median household income $29,863 (roughly half of U.S. income). Unemployment 24.7% (6.5 times the national average). Violent crime is second highest in U.S.

Is there still a question about what President Trump was referring to when he said, “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”

If you watch or read nothing but opinion news from biased sources you’re left with only one viewpoint and therefore it is the correct one. If you favor the truth, you will avail yourself to multiple sources that vary in viewpoint, each containing at least a modicum of truth.

MUELLER: THE GOOD GUY, THE BAD GUY, THE GOOD GUY

May 31, 2019

Oh, what a roller coaster ride the past 2+ years have been. Apparently, as early as the late spring of 2016, well before the election, Democrats in politics, in the media and in the bureaucracy feared a non-politician attaining the highest office in the land. They shared near panic that a leader introducing the discipline and effectiveness of private business modality could disrupt their happy complacency.

Citizen Trump, candidate Trump and then President Trump repeatedly voiced that he had been spied upon; that he’d been “wire tapped”. He was loudly shouted down by the coordinating cohesive cabal listed above. Nary a day has gone by since the announcement of his candidacy without a publicly spoken or written word of aspersion regarding Donald Trump or an attack on one of his offspring.

Allegations, innuendo and bogus claims about his business dealings and campaign propelled liberal “news outlet” ratings and drew advertisers. Anti-Trump pundits ruled the airwaves. The more negativity expressed, the higher the ratings and the more readers/watchers became stronger in their political divisiveness.

People across the nation became plagued with mental health issues and acted out in ways that required (in some cases) clinical or institutional intervention. Students, having been drummed and drilled with capitalist and conservative invective for 12-16 years, sought safe spaces in which they could cower and commiserate with their like traumatized peers. Pharmaceutical sales for anti-depressants and anti-anxiety compounds skyrocketed.

All the noise and dissent toward the outsider culminated in multiple investigations seeking a crime to hang on to the unwanted candidate/president. From within came the recommendation for a special council of investigators and Robert Mueller was called to lead the unit. While Mueller, himself, was referred to as a Republican, he chose 17 partisan Democrat supporters for the in depth probe for scandal, corruption or any transgression that could lead to a charge of impeachment.

Conservatives in favor of the president called it a partisan Democrat witch hunt. Liberals lauded the investigative team as loyal to the flag and the country. Then came the close of the search. The report conclusions were first summarized by Attorney General William Barr, then the lightly redacted report was made public. The President called it vindication. His opponents called it conclusive of wrongdoing and cover up.

The report, as written, left a great deal to ambiguity. Barr was accused of being in the pocket of the president. Mueller, on the other hand, is a turncoat and maybe was intimidated, coerced or blackmailed in some way for not recommending prosecution or outright encouraging impeachment proceedings by the House.

So, for clarification, on May 29, Robert Mueller stood before a group of reporters and announced his findings. Once again, he left open multiple opportunities to interpret his findings. While legalese is meant to leave no question, the report and Mueller’s synopsis of it merely opened the gates for ongoing partisan bickering over the meanings of his wording. There were phrases such as, “there was insufficient evidence to charge a broader conspiracy” and “If we had had confidence that the president clearly did not commit a crime, we would have said so”. Of course proving nothing happened is virtually impossible. Even if continued investigations cannot find proof of nothing, the anti-Trump crowd will forever believe that there is something they are missing.

First the office of the Special Council was questioned by the Democrats because Mueller is a registered Republican and must be partisan and protective of the president. Then he was a hero in their eyes because the entire investigative team he picked were highly partisan Democrat donors and advocates. Then came the report that did not explicitly call for presidential execution via a ten man firing squad. However, passive aggressive and double negative inferences such as those above leave Gerald Nadler the convenience of continuing to disrupt the operations of government in order to pursue and destroy a duly elected president who is not of Washington ilk.

Basically, what Mueller said was after 2+ years and $35 million taxpayer dollars we could not prove that the president or anyone on his campaign or staff did anything criminal or even demonstrable for which we could make a legal charge. We did our level best to find anything beyond dropping his fingernail clippings on the carpet in the oval office, but could not.

President Trump has accomplished much with his undiplomatic ways and lack of congressional support and it infuriates the Democrats seeking absolute power and control over the government and make “We the people” subjects to their tyranny.

WOW! I CAN’T BELIEVE IT’S HAPPENING AGAIN

January 3, 2019

As we begin the new year we are once again in a partial government shut down over issues with a continuing resolution (CR). Congress convenes again today with a new majority that is dead set against anything , known and unknown, the current president proposes, requests or demands. With the final accounting of the election, they have vowed to obstruct, deny and delay for the remainder of President Trump’s current term.

We the people should demand that a government wide BUDGET must be passed each and every year instead of allowing our elected employees the opportunity to bicker about appropriation and spending for individual departments and agencies for short terms without regard for actual revenues. Then, after confirmation, approval and signature by the president they can proceed to enact laws, rules and regulations that fit within the parameters set by the revenue projections with all spending within the actual revenue collections and department expenditures held proportionate to that income. There has been no fiscal year budget passed since FY 1997! Thanks to both sides of the political aisle, this is why our national debt is rapidly approaching (if not exceeding by time of publishing) $22 Trillion.

In my career I had to deal with budgets for a few small companies and was the CFO of a private non-profit organization dealing with government contracts and grants. In all cases, it was imperative to work within a designated framework of expenditures against revenue. If business was down, then the spending had to be cut back proportionately.

When the government (federal, state or local) failed to agree on a budget for the upcoming fiscal year we had to adjust the expenditures agency wide to accommodate. The NPO was expected to continue performing the services per the conditions agreed by contract until the governing entity released funds. Many of the the grants were on a cost reimbursement basis (we had to spend the money then request reimbursement for performance). Not all of our dealings with the various agencies followed their fiscal year.

The federal government does not follow the same rules they set for contractors. They declare certain amounts for spending and hope the money comes in to cover those expenditures. If it doesn’t, they borrow from you and me or some foreign country obligating you and me to pay it back through our taxes. Work hard…work two jobs if necessary. Your Congressman needs your taxes.

Once again, the Democrats (and RINOs) in Congress are using our immigration system to stymie the government until they overwhelmingly destroy its foundation. This time, instead of working on the allowance side of the immigration problem, they are fighting the rejection of continued destruction. They are fighting against the president, not on principle but on presentation. They will not allow the man in the White House the opportunity to do something the right way. Instead, they want to continue using a system failed by their own initiatives as an item of debate without resolution.

Please read THE PROGRESSIVE HEAD FAKE and embedded link for related in-depth information.

If President Trump is the negotiator he claims to be, he will not allow this to happen on his watch. His solution is a wall, a big beautiful wall. Granted that is not an all inclusive end to the problem of illegal immigration, but merely a step toward an ultimate solution. It is the first step that must be taken, however, in order to work on a complete fix that will benefit citizens and immigrants.

Hold firm Mr. President.  It’s your only hope for respect and a second term to do what’s right for our country.