House Republicans yesterday rejected Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-Cal.) plan to add a $2 trillion increase in the federal debt ceiling onto the Department of Defense Appropriations Conference Report. Should Democrats continue hanging extraneous matters onto the bill that meets the needs of our troops, 174 Republican members signed the letter to Pelosi saying they would oppose the bill if the debt increase (or other unpassable bills) are added onto the defense measure.
“We write today to express our strong opposition to reports that the Democrat Majority is considering attaching unrelated and extremely controversial proposals, such as an increase in the public debt limit, to the Fiscal Year 2010 Defense Appropriations bill. We object to maneuvers to use our troops as leverage to enact proposals that the Majority either cannot pass on their own or for which they wish to avoid directly voting on and we will oppose a Defense Appropriations package that includes such provisions.”
The three Republicans who did not sign the letter will likely vote against DOD appropriations anyway: Reps. John Campbell (Calif.), Ron Paul (Texas) and Walter Jones (N.C.).
The DOD will run out of funding at midnight Friday night without either passing the appropriations bill or passing a short term continuing resolution that will keep funding flowing until the appropriation is passed. Democrats are using this “must pass” legislative opportunity as a vehicle to shove through more of their spending binge, coupled with legislation so radical that it cannot pass on its own merits — even with the current huge Democrat majorities.
The latest likely candidate for inclusion is the Native Hawaiian Government Reorganization Act of 2009, which is a race-based bill that seeks to create a separate government in Hawaii made up of only those who are of native Hawaiian ancestry in violation of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution.
Throughout this congress, Democrats have been little concerned with the constitutionality of the measures they pass.
The House Natural Resources Committee majority provided notice late Friday of a markup of the legislation on Wednesday, likely in anticipation of hanging it on the DOD appropriations conference report. Republicans on the committee also got word that an agreement on the bill had been reached, but as of deadline had not been provided a copy of the agreement.
In 2006, the Department of Justice expressed to the Senate deep concerns over the racial nature of the legislation, noting that the Federal Courts as well as the Supreme Court have been invalidating state laws that use race-based qualifiers as the basis for state programs.
The Native Hawaiian bill joins the long train of abuses of the troop funding bill that is now likely to include more state bailouts, more infrastructure spending, bonus depreciation tax extenders, the $2 trillion dollar raise in the debt limit (the largest debt limit increase in history) and the Native Hawaiian race bill.
Harrycare Again on Life Support
The Senate’s contribution to the government takeover of health care was given a possible reprieve last night when the radical left had their public government option and the extension of Medicare stripped out of the Senate bill before the Congressional Budget Office even had the chance to score it.
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), one of the hard core leftists brokering a “compromise,” informed the media that the so-called public option and the Medicare expansion were being sacrificed at the altar of desperation.
“It’s not fair but it’s reality,” Harkin said.
This latest “compromise” proposal for the government takeover of health care hailed as a done deal last week by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) appears to have unraveled. But this has never been about improving health care for the Democrats. It has always been about winning one for Obama, no matter what it looks like or what it does or what it costs the American people in lives and treasure.
The Associated Press is reporting all 60 Senators caucusing with the Democrats are being summoned to the White House today for yet another round of Chicago-style “encouragement” to pass something, anything, which might make the president look like he has an accomplishment in his pocket — regardless of what it does for the careers of Democrats up for re-election next year or in the years to come for that matter.
The latest Rasmussen Daily Tracking Poll shows Obama’s overall approval rating at a mere 44 percent. Only 24 percent of voters strongly approve of the president’s job performance while 42 percent strongly disapprove.
Obama enjoys a dismal -18 Presidential Approval Index up one point from a -19 on Sunday. Ouch.
Clinton Appointee Nixes ACORN Funding Ban
Federal District Court Judge Nina Gershon on Friday issued a preliminary injunction ordering that the federal government keep doling out taxpayer dollars to ACORN. Gershon, appointed to the bench by Bill Clinton, ruled that the ban on funding of this corrupt organization was a bill of attainder. Ahem.
House Judiciary Committee Ranking Republican Lamar Smith (R-Texas) and House Oversight and Government Reform Ranking Republican Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) yesterday called Gershon’s decision “preposterous” in a letter (pdf) to Attorney General Eric Holder, demanding that the Department of Justice file an immediate appeal.
“It is outrageous that a federal court would deny Congress our constitutional right to cut off federal funding to an organization with a history of criminal conduct,” Smith said. “The law — passed with bipartisan support — is not intended to punish ACORN, but rather to protect our constituents from being forced to contribute their taxpayer dollars to an organization under investigation for fraud, mismanagement and abuse of federal funds.”
“The Justice Department should immediately appeal the decision in order to preserve Congress’ authority under the Spending Clause of the Constitution,” Smith continued. “Congress has a responsibility to prevent waste, fraud and abuse of taxpayer funds. This decision undercuts our ability to ensure that American tax dollars are not allocated to organizations engaged in or promoting activities that violate U.S. or state law.”
“The Obama Administration must vigorously defend what the President signed and Congress overwhelmingly passed — a bipartisan recognition that ACORN is not fit to receive federal funds to perform duties on behalf of the American people,” Issa said. “This left-wing activist judge is setting a dangerous precedent that left-wing political organizations plagued by criminal accusations have a constitutional entitlement to taxpayer dollars.”
ACORN is currently under investigation in more than a dozen states.