Senate The Future of the Republican Party

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Jabbadabbado, Nov 6, 2008.

  1. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Shinjo, all I'm saying is that all the above represent a shotgun approach to economic policy. Again, there was no unified plan. No NRA level "lets work together" commitment. You're almost completely focused in seeing things in binary ways. For example, no where in my post did I say something like the Cash for Clunkers was a failure. But, as a stand-alone program, it wasn't effective at all. It wasn't part of anything larger. It didn't promote any goals. It was basically an attempt at a short term bribe for those who were going to buy a car anyway, and actually ended up using resources that could have been used more effectively elsewhere. You say "Oh, here we go again with Solyndra, it's irrelevant..." but that was another huge boondoogle which ate up finite resources right in the middle of a economic downturn. It's a cumulative effect, of which the administration's habit of taking various things and throwing them up on the wall to see what would stick had the consequence of turning an 18 month recession into a 48 month+ one. It's something that every citizen in the US should be upset about because things could have been so much better.

    For example, as President, the buck stopped with Bush regarding the invasion of Iraq, no different than any President. The Bush administration had many, many obvious missteps with regards to how Iraq was handled. But do you imagine how stupid it would appear-how utterly and blindly partisan- it would be, if we were discussing the negative aspects of the former administration, and someone came in and said "Eh, here we go again with Iraq. It's completely irrelevant to the administration's foreign policy...." Except thats exactly what you continue to do now. The point is collectively, taken together, examples like CfC, Solyndra, Fast and Furious, all represent lack of overall plans to achieve any of the administration's own stated goals during its first term. And you're now seeing a political consequence of that.

    In short, you're still doing everything you can, including jumping through hoops of perception to give the administration a pass on anything negative, just so you can sit back and say "none of that matters, because it's really just the republicans fault." That's not how the division of powers, and the very executive branch itself exist within the government.
  2. shinjo_jedi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 5
    Yes, I get that's what you're trying to say. But so far I still can't figure out how it was a shotgun approach, other than Cash for Clunkers flopped and you're clinging to that as a representation of his economic plan. Why does that program represent a lack of a "unified" plan or "shotgun approach" but the auto bailout and the entirety of the stimulus do not, which were much bigger and the central focus of his "unified plan" for the economy? Cash for Clunkers was an experiment that was pretty minor when it comes down to it. If we were discussing the Bush Administration, I would never make the argument "oh, his 2008 stimulus didn't have an a positive effect so he lacked a unified plan and was a failure."

    Well, yes, it's goals were to reduce long-term carbon emissions and a short-term boost in demand (aggregate and for the drowning auto industry).

    Did you even read my points about Solyndra? It was a 1% of the overall loan program, which represents a fraction of a percent of the overall stimulus, to a promising company that faltered after market price for their product dropped. The Bush Administration originally was going to provide it a loan, but it wasn't done in time so it was at the top of the list for the Obama Administration, so it received one during the stimulus. It defaulted. Loan recipients do that. The stimulus actually had a better track record than most investors.

    The fact is that Congressional oversight found nothing wrong and it had an absolute 0 effect on the economy. What would have been different had the loan never been made or they not default? How is Solyndra defaulting a representation of the stimulus?

    Also...did you really compare Solyndra to Iraq?

    Well, first, the recession was 18 months. Not 48. That's a fact. Second, the stimulus prevented a depression (and Solyndra didn't spoil it). The U.S. is performing better than nearly every other OECD country in recovery (just ask Europe how austerity is working for them).
  3. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Shinjo, you're still missing my point. Anything can be justified as a specific line item. If something like Solyandra was a fluke, you might have a point. Except there has been at least 6 different Solyandras of scope and scale. . If any one of them represent 1% of an overall program, then taken together, the sum total is approaching 10% lost to waste and poor planning with nothing in return. Add that in with allegations of ties to political campaign donations and favoritism, and one is left with a much more serious issue than "what's the big deal? An investment was made and it didn't work out..." It would be one thing to promote job growth in a specific sector and cascade that across the country as part of a larger plan. It's another thing completely to offer up government-backed grants approaching billions of dollars to political insiders and campaign contributors if the results are a 4-1 failure rate among the companies once the specific individuals have taken their cut. Which is the case of any of these situations? We don't know, because individually, apparently none of them are relevant to economic policy. See, the forum here used to be the place where specific ideas were debated. For example, the exact details about some topic would be debated, both positive and negative. There probably wouldn't be any consensus or have anyone get their mind changed in a brilliant flash of epiphany, but information would still be exchanged. I'm not using this as a "good old days" soapbox, because times change. But really, there's no point in having any debate if the sum total is going to be eh, so and so again, that's irrelevant...as is anything that's could be remotely negative....

    You're glossing over the fact that my posts are in response to what you're posting here. If your sole point is to say "it's all the republican's fault," you're not really leaving any room for any movement.That's the type of sentiment that is only focused on casting blame in a partisan way. My only response is that the executive branch has had lots of screw ups as well, as long as you don't simply ignore them to promote the above statement. Government is a sum of its parts, so there is plenty of blame that can be spread around, from either party, and multiple entities. However, one of the unique consequences of being President is that the office of the President represents the face of government. The buck most assuredly does stop with the President-Any President. It's a double edge sword which every President from Washington has both enjoyed and suffered from. However, for some strange reason for which I'm really at a loss to explain, Obama supporters seem to be obsessed with insulating him, and instead are concerned with nothing else but casting blame in any direction but the executive branch.
  4. shinjo_jedi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 5
    How was it "waste and poor planning"? I'll repeat for a third time: the loan was initially negotiated under Bush and was for a promising company that mostly failed due to a drop in the market price. The "allegations" of political favoritism is, again, a false trail with no actual evidence. Remember the Issa-led Congressional investigation that found nothing? So, what - using evidence - was exactly done wrong here? Where are you getting the 10% of the 4-to-1 failure rate? You're just making unsubstantiated claims with no facts to make a general accusation that you want to fit about Obama's policy.

    We can discuss the details and merits of the stimulus and auto bailout, and what they have to do with his economic policy, if you'd like, because those are what matters - not some fake scandal that has so little evidence of wrongdoing that only Glenn Beck and Michelle Malkin actually were outraged.
    Last edited by shinjo_jedi, May 29, 2013
  5. Juliet316 Shelf of Shame "Loser"

    Game Winner
    Member Since:
    Apr 27, 2005
    star 7
    So what will be the effect on the GOP/Tea Party now that Michelle Bachmann has decided not to run for re-election?
  6. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    Getting back to the future of the GOP...:

    Schlafly advises Republicans: Ignore Hispanics and ‘reach out to… white voters’

    [face_laugh] Anyone who listens to this lady needs to be throttled as the white vote was not the problem in the last election--they lacked a coalition of other demographics outside of white people. That and Mitt R-Money two-bit huckster that helped sell off America's future one company at a time. So I I don't think this is necessarily a problem for the whitest party since the KKK.

    And for the women here who don't know who Phyllis Schlafly is, she's the reason why women are still treated fairly unfairly in most aspects of their public life: linky

    So there is that.
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  7. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
  8. shinjo_jedi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 5
    Lincoln Chafee also switched to Democrat.
    Last edited by shinjo_jedi, May 29, 2013
  9. Rogue_Ten Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 18, 2002
    star 6
    WONT SOMEONE REACH OUT TO ME, THE WHITE MALE VOTER?!
  10. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    That just sounds dirty.
  11. Arawn_Fenn Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2004
    star 7
    Besides, Europe isn't just the so-called "PIIGS". Don't forget Scandinavia. Why are they doing better? For one thing, they limit income inequality by taxing the **** out of the rich, like we used to do back when we were prosperous.
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  12. Game3525 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 25, 2008
    star 4
    Jesus......some people never learn.

    Romney won white voters by the same margin Reagan did in 1980. Unless they are doing some 1960 nonsense and dead people are allowed to vote.....then they are out of luck.
  13. Kimball_Kinnison Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2001
    star 6
    I've been out for a long holiday weekend, but I want to respond to those who blame the Republicans for so many filibusters.

    The problem with that claim is that you cannot look at things in isolation. Much of the filibustering is in response to Harry Reid exploiting the practice of "filling the tree", which blocks Republicans from offering any amendments to bills. That very much creates a "take it or leave it" environment in the Senate. Is it then any wonder that the Republicans are willing to block bills that they have been kept from having input on?

    For the record, "filling the tree" is a procedural tactic that both sides have used over the years, and its use have been steadily increasing. Robert Byrd (D) taught it to Bob Dole in the early/mid 90s. When the Democrats took the Senate in 2001-2003, they increased the use of it. When the Republicans took control back in 2003, it increased again. According to this report from 2010, the 109th Congress (2005-2006) used it more than any previous Congress, but the 110th Congress (2007-2008) used it even more.
    In other words, blocking cloture (i.e. filibustering) is the only real means to prevent the practice of "filling the tree". At the same time, "filling the tree" is (allegedly) meant to overcome obstructionism.

    These are both parliamentary tactics that are being used by their respective sides to try and get what they want. You can't blame one side for using the tactic available to them without examining the tactics being used by the other side as well.
  14. Jabba-wocky Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2003
    star 8
    KK that explanation is specious. They have also filibustered most all of President Obama's nominations. Since one has clearly never been able to offer amendments to human beings, your explanation doesn't account for their behavior. Never mind, that in the first place your argument only worked by eliding the role Republicans can have (and choose not to play) in committee and the original drafting of legislation.
  15. JediSmuggler Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 5, 1999
    star 5

    How many of Bush's nominees got filibustered? Miguel Estrada comes to mind off the top of my head. So does John Bolton.

    Or is it only okay when Democrats do it a Republican?

    That seems to be a common theme among you liberals.
  16. Fire_Ice_Death Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2001
    star 7
    I'd also like to add that most additions (that I've seen) that Republicans have added to any Democratic legislation have been poison pills designed so that they won't pass.



    Wah wah wah wah wah. Really, grow up before you come back here. In fact, I hear Free Republic needs more people.

    Here you go: link

    And the ATF is still leaderless, IIRC. So yeah, grow up and quit whining about, 'This is how things worked when Bush was in charge,' because they didn't. Most of his nominations passed.
    Last edited by Fire_Ice_Death, May 30, 2013
  17. Jabba-wocky Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2003
    star 8
    In Bush's entire 8 year tenure 26 judicial nominations were stalled, blocked, or filibustered. In the year 2012 alone, President Obama had 25 total nominations brought to the Senate floor. All but two of them were successfully filibustered by Republicans. No one is complaining because the filibuster is invoked sometimes. They complain because it is invoked at nearly every single available opportunity. That's not something that happened under Bush, and it's not something that happened under previous Presidents of any party.

    Try again.
  18. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    But see Wocky, you're also ignoring why Obama's picks are receiving extra scrutiny in the first place. For example, no less than 2 federal courts have declared a group of the administration's appointments to be unconstitutional:

    HERE

    AND

    HERE

    In a scathing rejection of Executive overreach, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled in a January 25, 2013 decision that President Obama’s January 2012 recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board were unconstitutional....The Court further explained that the Constitution required the Senate’s advice and consent for such appointments...The President’s January 4, 2012 appointments were to fill vacancies which first occurred on August 27, 2010, August 27, 2011, and January 3, 2012 – times, in fact, when the Senate was still in session. Given the timing, the President lacked recess appointment authority for that reason as well.

    The President simply can't shoehorn appointments into office while Congress is only temporarily adjourned, because it's an abuse of the executive's scope of office. If Bush only had 26 appointments filibustered during his terms, Bush also had 0 appointments overturned for being unconstitutional. And Bush had some controversial appointees, so I don't know what it says about this administration. If you want to highlight the seemingly large amount of filibusters with regards to appointments, how much of that is the direct consequence of the President trying to improperly bypass Congress? Is the President's behavior the cause of most of the resistance in Congress? On one hand, you have an administration that acts in numerous examples of sheer arrogance, so I think it's only natural that Congress then pushes back. Is it a chicken vs egg scenario? I don't know. But the basic fact is that government is parts of the whole, not simply one over the other.

    But I know, I know. The next post will simply say that the fact that the administration's appointments have been declared unconstitutional is irrelevant to the discussion, because it's not the administration's fault. I mean, how can the President be expected to know what is Constitutional or not, especially since his opposition party is just a bunch of meanies....
    Last edited by Mr44, May 30, 2013
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  19. Jabba-wocky Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2003
    star 8
    This is a pretty stunning non-sequitur, Mr44. It's basically incoherent as a response to the ongoing discussion. The basis of all the courts findings, which your own post admits, is that the timing of the appointments was inappropriate. That has no bearing on the quality of the nominees themselves. It therefore cannot serve as a rationale for filibustering nominees, since the Senate is necessarily in session and operating under regular order when it is considering--and filibustering--a cloture motion on a nominee.
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  20. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    Obama's picks are receiving "extra scrutiny" because he is a Democratic president, which means that all but a few of the Republicans in the Senate believe him to be incapable of nominating people. They believe that he cannot be allowed to nominate people that he wants, because of course they might change the balance in various courts and cause certain laws that they dislike to be weakened or done away with entirely, and that new laws they dislike may be allowed to stand.

    In the Republican universe, elections do not have consequences, because the most recent election is nothing more than an error of democracy that will be corrected at the next available opportunity.
  21. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    Yep, there's the post.

    Wocky, It's not a non-sequitur at all. You're only saying that because you seem to hold the perception that anything negative dealing with the President is a non sequitur no matter what the topic is. Do you know how government works? Both court opinions were pretty strong rebukes, and neither said it was a simply issue of timing. The point is what the action represents, which is much more than a simple mistake. It's like if you try and withdraw money from a bank after it's closed, then 'timing is everything" represents bank robbery and 20 years of jail time. It's not the qualifications or lack thereof for the individuals in question, it's that the executive itself tried to bypass Congress and got smacked down, by not just one, but 2 federal courts. Forget governmental procedural concerns, don't you think that human nature guides that Congress would be more than miffed over the attempt in question and be more willing to act to uphold its own authority? That's what separation of powers entail, and why there is a majority party and an opposition party.

    See, the executive tried to bypass Congress and circumvent Congressional advice and approval. That action was a gross violation of separation of powers. It stands to reason that Congress would then apply additional scrutiny to those picks that are then submitted for approval, including the fillibuster. Is such additional scrutiny always warranted? Maybe, maybe not. Is there a bit of "flexing muscle" syndrome? Absolutely. But it's a cyclical response to actions taken by the executive itself. It doesn't exist in isolation. It's a give and take relationship. Your entire line of discussion amounts to simply saying that nothing that the President does is wrong (or least dismissing anything remotely contributory and/or negative) because you think the republicans are mean. That's silly.
  22. Jabba-wocky Chosen One

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2003
    star 8
    Mr44, your explanation doesn't work because Republican behavior predates it.

    Take the year 2009. Obama had just entered office. In that year, 11 total nominees came up for cloture votes in Congress. 10 of them were subject to filibusters by the Senate Republicans, 5 of which were successful. The remaining one candidate was subject to a secret hold, also by a Republican Senator, and which was successfully defeated in a cloture motion.
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  23. KnightWriter Administrator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2001
    star 8
    44: Have you ever considered becoming a corporate defense attorney? I'm completely serious. I think it would suit you. Your ability to offload responsibility and rationalize any and all behavior is at a genius level, and I think you would be highly successful defending corporations from just about anything.
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  24. Mr44 VIP

    Member Since:
    May 21, 2002
    star 6
    I think you're misrepresenting what occurred though. Before I continue, I'd like you to list the 5 who were successfully filibustered vs the 5 who were confirmed anyway. I'll help you out and provide the list so you can just copy and paste:

    Hamilton-
    Sessions-
    Sunstein
    Groves-
    Koh-
    Hayes-
    Hill-
    Rouse-
    Goolsbee-
    Ogden-
    Solis-

    Before you continue by listing the results, let me offer a random thought though. Let's say the year was 2001, and Bush had just assumed office. Hypothetically, what if he nominated G. Gordon Liddy, Oliver North, Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly, Herman Cain, and as a bone, Dick Gephardt for various positions? Ok, are you with me? Two part question:

    1)Do you think there would be an upswing in potential filibusters coming from the democrats in Congress, or would they decrease in frequency?
    2)Would the increase in number of filibusters be solely reflective of the opposition party, or of the President nominating them, or a bit of both?
    Bonus question-keeping in mind that list, would you personally support the filibuster?

    I'll wait.
    Last edited by Mr44, May 30, 2013
  25. Juliet316 Shelf of Shame "Loser"

    Game Winner
    Member Since:
    Apr 27, 2005
    star 7
    IIRC Bolton was the only high - level nominee (I only vaguely remember Miguel Estrada as name) who the senate blocked and further IIRC several republicans joined in the blocking of Bolton which forced Bush to make him a recess appointment. And if your going to bring up Harriet Myers, she deserved to be cut off at the pass from the Supreme Court IMO. She proved once she was nominated she was nowhere near fit to be a Supreme Court Justice.

    Filibustering and blocking nominees are bad with either party (and yes the Democrats have no excuse either for blocking all the judicial appointments they did, at least they did relent and start to unblock the noms towards the end of Bush's terms), but there was nowhere near the blocking, filibusting, and just outright trying to dredge up anything that could damage a nominee during the Bush Presidency as there seems to be in the Obama one.

    I hate to think what will happen if there ends up having to be a Supreme Court vacency to fill while the Republicans have the filibuster power that they do.