GOP Political Attacks

5 Obama Successes Republicans Have To Pretend Never Happened

5 Obama Successes Republicans Have To Pretend Never Happened

President Obama arrives at Bob Hope Airport via helicopter from LAX, en route to ABC Studios for an appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times

The National Memo

Republicans have consistently said that a president cannot take responsibility for a strong economy — unless of course he’s a Republican.

A weak economy, however, is always a Democratic president’s fault. And if a Republican president presides over the worst financial crisis in a half-century after seven years in office, that is clearly the fault of poor people.

President Obama is in an awkward position when it comes to the economy. It’s only great if you compare it to the last 14 years. But with 50 percent of America now saying in the latest CNN poll that his presidency is a success, he figures that he’s now allowed to “take a well-earned victory lap” by answering the question Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) asked for four years: “Where are the jobs?”

“Well, after 12 million new jobs, a stock market that has more than doubled, deficits that have been cut by two-thirds, health care inflation at the lowest rate in nearly 50 years, manufacturing coming back, auto industry coming back, clean energy doubled — I’ve come not only to answer that question, but I want to return to the debate that is central to this country, and the alternative economic theory that’s presented by the other side,” the president said in Cleveland on Wednesday.

A sensible media would be debating which of Obama’s two great accomplishments — the stimulus or the Affordable Care Act — is a bigger success; which better proves that the government can successfully intervene to prevent suffering while reshaping our economy to be more sustainable; or about which Republicans were more wrong.

But conservatives won’t let that happen. They’ll focus on metrics that languished before Obama came into office — we’re very concerned about labor force participation all of a sudden! — and blast him for not solving all of the failures of conservative economics and foreign policies.

America should be used to Democratic presidents outperforming Republicans by now. While no administration is perfect, President Obama has staked strong claims for liberal values and policies that prove things Republicans have to pretend never happened.

  1. Proved trickle-down economics are wrong, again
    You don’t hear it mentioned often enough, but 2014 was the best year of job creation in this century. This is a key point, because it’s the first full year in which Obama’s economic policies really took hold. Most of the Bush tax breaks on the rich ended in 2013. And in 2014, new taxes on the wealthy and corporations kicked in to help 16 million Americans gain health insurance. The result was a job market like we haven’t seen since the’90s. As they did in 1993, Republicans claimed that asking the rich to pay a bit more would destroy the economy. So, of course, the opposite happened. It’s almost as if some tax hikes on the wealthy are good for the economy! But if Republicans admitted that, they’d have to give up their entire reason for existing, which is to comfort the most comfortable.
  2. Proved we can expand health insurance coverage and shrink the deficit.
    America’s long-term debt problems are largely built on conservatives’ unwillingness to do what every other advanced nation in the world does — insure everyone. As a result, we pay more and get worse results than almost every industrialized country in the world. Obamacare has shown that we can increase coverage dramatically while cutting more than $600 billion from long-term debt projections. Republicans have finally gotten honest in their new budget and admitted that their alternative to Obamacare is… nothing. They’ve got nothing because Obamacare was their alternative, and every prediction they’ve made about it has been wrong. Health spending isat a 50-year low, businesses aren’t dumping employees’ coverage, hospitals are performing better, and policy cancelations were likely lower than they were before the law. Meanwhile, Obama has been even more successful at shrinking the deficit as a percentage of GDP than even Bill Clinton.
  3. Proved that the government can kick-start a clean-energy revolution.
    When it comes to fighting climate change, President Obama has done more than anyone on Earth. Beyond the regulations he set in his first term, which are quickly reducing our dependency on dirty energy, the stimulus launched the clean-energy technological revolution this nation needed. Republicans started calling the stimulus “failed” before it even became law. And that kind of message discipline — plus half a billion dollars in ads that smeared the bill — scared Democrats from bragging about it. But now that we’ve experienced the first year of economic growth where carbon emissions didn’t increase in 40 years, maybe they should.
  4. Proved we can regulate Wall Street without killing the stock market.
    Good news! Bankers are complaining about being regulated too much. Despite this “over-regulation,” we’re seeing constant stock market records. Meanwhile, the memory of the costs of under-regulation — 8 million jobs and trillions in wealth — continues to fade. Democrats have become newly proud of the Dodd-Frank law now that they see how desperate Republicans are to gut it. The success in keeping the economic engine of the rich purring should not dissuade those on the left. Instead, they should continue to fight against the persistent dangers to our economy that come from ridiculous executive compensation schemesstock buybacks, and high-frequency trading.
  5. Proved that we should give diplomacy a chance.
    The Bush administration left America facing a newly nuclear-armed North Korea, an Iran building nuclear centrifuges, and a wrecked Iraq, run by a propped-up sectarian strongman with no interest in reconciliation. Democrats were likely naive in assuming this Tower of Babel of foreign policy disasters could be kept from crumbling. The Obama administration’s effort to re-engage the world may seem foolhardy now — but what was the alternative? More confrontational Republican alternatives would have guaranteed nothing but more American lives lost. Syria is a disaster. Libya proved that regime change is never simple. Putin is emboldened or frantically flailing, depending on your point of view. But as a result of re-engagement with our allies and a Medvedev-led Russia, sanctions brought Iran to the negotiating table. We’re closer than ever to a nuclear deal that could prevent another, still more disastrous war. And even if it fails, at least we tried not to repeat the catastrophes of the past.

Despite these successes, Republicans have to see Obama as a floundering, economy-shrinking, deficit-creating failure, or risk questioning their failed worldview.

Essentially, they have to pretend he’s Bobby Jindal.

Fox analyst: Obama’s appearance on Fallon damaged the image of the presidency

Conservative columnist Cal Thomas. Screenshot via Youtube.

I’ve heard some variation of the above statement since the POTUS appeared on Jimmy Fallon’s show.   What I don’t understand is this:

Doesn’t it damage the office of the Presidency to insist that the President’s birth certificate is not authentic; to hurl personal attacks at President Obama on a daily basis, especially on Fox News.  Fox Nation, the online website of Fox News have maintained the most vile dialogue from readers, pertaining to President Obama; they try at every turn to denigrate the President‘s most significant accomplishments (Killing Osama Bin Laden and Health Care.)

How is it these people are so concerned about the office of the President’s image when they have been attempting to tear it down Barack Obama’s image even before he was elected?  When Mr. Obama was elected by a wide margin, they started doubling down on their personal attacks.

The Raw Story

Add syndicated conservative columnist Cal Thomas to the list of those upset over President Obama’s appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon this week.

Thomas expressed his displeasure Saturday afternoon on Fox News Watch with Obama’s light-hearted appearance on the NBC late night show.

“There is a certain decorum about the presidency, I think,” Thomas complained. “When you take it on and lower it to that level, I think it does damage to the image of the office. It’s a distraction from the important stuff going on. The jobs and the economy, foreign policy issues.”

Thomas isn’t the first on Fox this week to criticize Obama’s appearance on Fallon. Gretchen Carlson bizarrely thought Wednesday that Obama’s decision to appear was “nutso.”

MSNBC’s Ed Schultz slammed Carlson for her comments later in the day.

WATCH: Video from Fox News, which was broadcast from April 28, 2012.

Stacey Campfield, Tennessee Senator Behind ‘Don’t Say Gay’ Bill, Removed From Knoxville Restaurant After Anti-Gay Remarks

So, the question arises: what the hell are the Tea Party putting in that “tea”?   Ninety-nine per cent of the GOP are literally nuts!

The Huffington Post

Tennessee Senator Stacey Campfield’s proposed “Don’t Say Gay” law continues to divide residents — but one local restaurateur made her views on the legislation resoundingly clear this weekend.

As Metropulse   and Towleroad  are reporting, Martha Boggs, the owner of Knoxville’s The Bistro at the Bijou, asked Campfield to leave after he tried to dine at her establishment.

Following the incident, Boggs posted a status on her restaurant’s Facebook page  which read, “I hope that Stacy (sic) Campfield now knows what it feels like to be unfairly discriminated against.”

Metropulse reports that Boggs later clarified her actions in an interview. “I didn’t want his hate in my restaurant,” she said. “I told him he wasn’t welcome here. … I feel like he’s gone from being stupid to being dangerous, and I wanted to stand up to him.” Boggs is also due to appear on HuffPost Gay Voices Editor-at-Large Michelangelo Signorile’s radio program on SiriusXM OutQ  today to talk about the experience.

Many have been quick to applaud Boggs’ actions on Facebook. “You didn’t unfairly discriminate against Stacey Campfield,” one user praised. “You have the right to refuse service to anyone, especially a poorly educated bigot.”

Still, another user added, “Denying service to a man because you don’t agree with his opinions is no different than denying service to a man because you don’t like his skin color.”

Boggs’ actions come on the heels of an interview Campfield gave last week to Signorile, in which the senator made controversial statements on the HIV/AIDS epidemic and the media’s supposed “glorification” of homosexuals.

“Most people realize that AIDS came from the homosexual community — it was one guy screwing a monkey, if I recall correctly, and then having sex with men. It was an airline pilot, if I recall,” he said in the interview. “My understanding is that it is virtually — not completely, but virtually — impossible to contract AIDS through heterosexual sex…very rarely [transmitted].”

You can listen to that interview here. 

The GOP’s Racial Politics

The Progress Report

From the subtle to the sickening, this Republican primary season has seen a normalizing of racist and racially-coded language. It was not so long ago that the chairman of the Republican National Committee apologized for his party’s history of “trying to benefit politically from racial polarization,” and told the NAACP, “I am here today as the Republican Chairman to tell you we were wrong.” Such leadership cannot be found now.

Newt Gingrich may be the new master of race politics with his efforts to label Barack Obama the “food-stamp president” and his generous offer to lecture African-Americans at the NAACP on why they should demand paychecks instead of food stamps. We know that Mr. Gingrich’s claims of being a “historian” for Freddie and Fannie are a strain, but would it be that hard for him to check the history of NAACP’s leadership on developing and demanding groundbreaking job creation policies? (Or to note that more food stamp recipients are white than any other race or ethnicity?) But why would a historian let facts get in the way of historical racial prejudice?

ThinkProgress’ Jeff Spross has compiled a recent history of the GOP’s dehumanizing and divisive language that threatens to plague the primary process for weeks to come. Watch it:

GOP Rep. Steve King wants hearings on Obama’s ‘drunken uncle’

This is a bit confusing.  The GOP says we spend too much money on frivolities.  Wouldn’t a hearing on the POTUS’  half or one-quarter uncle’s drunk driving arrest fall in that category?

A better use of federal dollars would be to investigate the real reason Bush and Cheney lied to the American people about the Iraq war.  Not to mention all of the war crimes sanctioned by Bushco.

It seems our president has no skeletons in his closet, (none that can be verified) so the GOP has to stoop to this level to tarnish the office of the President of the United States just because he’s not “one of them”.

Raw Replay

House Judiciary Committee member Rep. Steve King (R-IA) is calling for President Barack Obama’s “drunken uncle” to testify before Congress.

Onyango Obama, who allegedly does not have a valid visa, was arrested in Framingham, Massachusetts, on August 24 and charged in Framingham District Court with operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol. He is the half-brother of President Obama’s father.

King suspects that Onyango Obama will get favorable deportation proceedings due to his relation to the president.

“We have to bring drunken ‘Uncle Omar’ in front of the House Judiciary Committee, drill down into this, and tell America what’s going on,” the Iowa Republican told Fox News’ Chris Stirewalt Monday.

“I watched as President Obama’s aunt, Zeituni Onyango, also evaded [Immigration and Customs Enforcement],” King added. “The sympathy, the bleeding heart, of [Department of Homeland Security Director] Janet Napolitano decided to use an administrative authority to grant President Obama’s aunt asylum.”

Watch this video from Fox News’ Power Play, broadcast Sept. 12, 2011.

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GOP Congressmen Put Constituents Who Asked Tough Questions On A ‘Watch List’

Fascism and/or McCarthyism is alive and well and residing within the GOP…

Think Progress

In recent weeks GOP congressmen have resorted to all sorts of underhanded schemes to avoid interacting with their angry constituents back home over August recess. Now two Republican freshmen, Reps. Daniel Webster (R-FL) and Tim Griffin (R-AZ), are taking this trend one step further, using disturbing intimidation tactics and “watch lists” to discourage constituents from asking them questions:

Rep. Webster’s Winter Garden, Florida district office gave out a “Watch List” of six Floridians who had asked questions at Webster’s previous town halls. The list, with the header “For the Media,” included names, photographs, and questions that members of the media should ask them.

The Watch List itself doesn’t contain any information on who wrote it or where it comes from.The memos surfaced in Arkansas in connection to the office of Rep. Tim Griffin, and were traced back to Rep. Webster’s office.

With black and white photos that resemble police surveillance, some of them pulled from the individuals’ Facebook profiles, the memo is clearly meant to intimidate these six people and anyone else who might stand up and ask a question of their elected representative. At a Griffin town hall, staffers were handing out the Watch List to attendees, calling it their “homework.” Griffin staffers were also spotted taking photos and shooting video of attendees, creating an extra layer of intimidation.

While Webster and Griffin are ostensibly making these lists to screen out paid activists, the people they are targeting are regular constituents who have simply spoken up and expressed their disagreement about important policy decisions. Nevertheless, Webster staffers clearly went out of their way to investigate the backgrounds of these individuals and insinuate people like them are not welcome at future town halls.

In April, ThinkProgress reported from Webster’s home district about a town hall where he faced a barrage of criticism for defending his support for tax breaks for the rich and the Medicare-ending Paul Ryan budget. One of the constituents ThinkProgress interviewed, Tamecka Pierce, ended up as #5 on the “Watch List.”

Pierce, who had to undergo chemotherapy, asked Webster a tough question about what would happen to people like her with major preexisting conditions under the Republican budget. She expressed her disappointment in Webster for dodging her question — which apparently was enough to land her on a McCarthy-esque list that pictures her like a criminal.

In another instance, the memo suggests that members of the media question the military service of a 66-year-old Vietnam veteran named Ron Parsell. Parsell told the Orlando Sentinel, “I think it’s pretty weird. Someone asks a legitimate question, and all of a sudden somebody’s got a dossier on you.” Parsell added, “It’s the type of thing they’d do in old Russia.”

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Oklahoma GOP Lawmaker Sally Kern: ‘Blacks’ Don’t Work As Hard As White People

The “crazies” seem to have a monopoly within the GOP…

Think Progress

The Republican-controlled Oklahoma House of Representatives passed a proposed constitutional amendment yesterday that would eliminate Affirmative Action in state government. The official GOP reasoning for the change is that while “discrimination exists,” “I don’t think Affirmative Action has been as successful as we like to believe,” the bill’s sponsor, Rep. T.W. Shannon (R), explained. But perpetual extremist Rep. Sally Kern (R) offered her argument for ending the system that helps minorities advance: “blacks” simply don’t work as hardas whites:

Rep. Sally Kern, R-Oklahoma City, said minorities earn less than white people because they don’t work as hard and have less initiative.

“We have a high percentage of blacks in prison, and that’s tragic, but are they in prison just because they are black or because they don’t want to study as hard in school? I’ve taught school, and I saw a lot of people of color who didn’t study hard because they said the government would take care of them.

Kern said women earn less than men because “they tend to spend more time at home with their families.”

While Kern has long history of taking outlandish positions — from saying homosexuality is more dangerous than terrorism to introducing legislation to force teachers to question evolution — her bigoted comments reflect a disturbing trend among even mainstream conservatives to blame valuable social safety net programs for creating a culture of dependency or even “slavery.”

Rep. Broun: FDR Was A Communist And The Supreme Court Has “No Clue” About The Constitution

The crazies on the right just keep on giving us fodder…

Political Correction

Speaking on the House floor last night, Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA) spoke at length about the original intent behind the Constitution and alleged that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt was a communist sympathizer who did “everything he possibly could” to implement the policies of Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin. The comments came while Broun was attacking social welfare programs that he argued were outside the scope of the general welfare clause.

BROUN: Original intent was the general welfare, the general welfare of the nation, not welfare of individuals. We’ve developed this big welfare system in this country. It all started, in earnest, with President Woodrow Wilson and Franklin Delano Roosevelt. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt just exploded the size and scope of the government with his New Deal. Both progressives. Both had socialist beliefs. In fact, Franklin Delano Roosevelt sent his advisors, his close friends, his cabinet people to go visit with Stalin in communist Russia to study what he was doing, what Stalin was doing there so that FDR could replicate it here in the United States. And he did everything he possibly could to do so.


Broun went on to explain that Democrats and Republicans alike were violating their oath of office by voting for programs that have not been delegated to Congress in the Constitution. “One of the greatest domestic powers that are anti-Constitution reside right in this House, right in this House. Because we are destroying our liberty,” Broun explained.

Broun, who has previously stated that liberal judges are the enemies of America, also argued that Supreme Court was not the final arbiter of what is and what is not constitutional. “Most Supreme Court justices have no clue what the original intent is and don’t care. They just don’t care.” The three branches of government and the states have something to say about constitutionality of a particular law, Broun said, but ultimately, “We the people are actually the final arbiter.”

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10 Most Ignorant Politicians

Perhaps it’s not fair to call people stupid or ignorant.  Yet, when politicians tell outright lies, make strange accusations against the POTUS, make blatant mistakes about facts, and rely on conjecture rather than those facts, then come on, are they not one sandwich short of a Happy Meal and rather ignorant to boot?

The Daily Beast

 Gaffes, lies, and dumb mistakes—which politicians spread falsehoods? From Palin to Bachmann to Biden, The Daily Beast ranks the country’s 10 most ill-informed leaders.

How Dumb Are We? That was the question Newsweek posed last week when we asked 1,000 Americans to take the nation’s citizenship test—and 38 percent of test takers failed.

The Daily Beast decided to have some fun with this idea and take it a step further: If a populace has an ignorance problem, it stands to reason that some of their elected leaders are stoking it. While knowledge gaps among elected officials can sometimes be explained by the constant scrutiny of public office, some gaffes are simply too erroneous to excuse.

Exhibit 1: Michele Bachmann, U.S. representative from Minnesota, who infamously said during two recent events in New Hampshire, “You’re the state where the shot was heard ‘round the world at Lexington and Concord.” Negatory. That state was Massachusetts.

Exhibit 2: Harry Reid, senator from Nevada, during last year’s knock-down drag-out election battle against Sharron Angle, had several major foot-in-mouth moments. Among them, “I don’t know how anyone of Hispanic heritage could be a Republican.” Sorry, Harry. A solid 31 percent of Hispanics voted for John McCain in the 2008 presidential election, according to the Pew Research Center.

We could go on, but that might take all week. Instead, The Daily Beast tried to measure the most fact-challenged politicians in America, who, based on their public statements, apparently need to brush up on their high-school reading. For our data, we relied on Politifact, the Pulitzer Prize-winning website founded by the St. Petersburg Times, which independently verifies or corrects statements made by public officials. We limited our pool to well-known politicians with at least six statements inspected by Politifact, and then assigned a point system based on Politifact’s Truth-O-Meter designations:

0 points for True or Mostly True statements
1 point for Half True or Barely True statements
3 points for False statements
5 points for Pants on Fire statements—the most absurd, ridiculous statements

Gallery: 10 Most Ignorant Politicians

For the final ranking, we took each politician’s point total and divided by the total number of statements analyzed by Politifact for each politician. Care to take an educated guess at America’s Most Ignorant Politician? Click here to find out.

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