Tag Archives: Republicans

Why Barack Obama DESERVES Re-Election (Part 1)

barack obama election 2012
Re-elect Barack Obama

Let me say at the outset that I don’t agree with everything Barack Obama has done as president. Yet I’ve never in my life agreed with everything any president has done.

For that matter, I didn’t agree with everything my mom and dad did!

From both a pragmatic political and idealistically progressive standpoint, however, there’s no doubt this president should serve another four years.

I have heard from progressives I respect about their disappointment with aspects of his time in office. It’s time to get realistic about what Barack Obama has done as president, and what four years of Mitt Romney will mean for those already struggling (and who progressives are and speak for).

How about we start with President Obama’s appointments to the US Supreme Court.

I know most voters don’t pay attention to this, but think for a moment who John McCain might have appointed, and who Barack Obama actually did. Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan are both solid jurists. The alternative would likely have been a 6-3 conservative court rather than the 5-4 we now have.

Oh yeah, and when before in US history have three women sat on the highest court in the land together?

How about we take a look at the Affordable Care Act?

Was it perfect? Nope. Yet when all is said and done, double digit millions of Americans will be covered by health insurance. Also, that habit the insurance companies had of dropping your coverage when it suited them is now gone. Plus, parents can keep their kids on their plans to age 26. But here’s the most important thing. Barack Obama took the first step in taking us down the road to universal healthcare. That would be where everyone is covered. The first president who tried to get healthcare legislation passed in this country was Teddy Roosevelt. None of us remember him.

It’s time to stop carping about whether that’s the first thing Barack Obama should have done, and whether it’s good enough.

It is.

Political pragmatism is something it seems Republicans do better than Democrats. When the time came to try to gut this president’s agenda, they stood together. It’s time for us to stand together the same way.

Barack Obama has governed well, and those who those who think this country should be run like an investment firm know this. In the days, weeks, and months ahead, we’ll be bombarded with polls, ads, responses to the ads, talking heads, gasbags, and wannabees.

Know this. The man to bring this country back to some semblence of economic normalcy isn’t Mitt Romney. The man to do that has already sits in the White House.

As we move forward, we’ll be writing about other things Barack Obama has accomplished for you, me, my kids, and this country. Let the naysayers do their best.

We’re better, and so is Barack Obama.

The Mark Riley Morning Show Tune in weekdays www.wwrl1600.com Live 6am-9am EST.

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GOP Clown Show Hits Next Venue: New Hampshire

The results of the Iowa Republican Caucuses are now known.

So the candidates, from top to bottom, can now stop acting like they really care one way or the other about the people of that good state.

I asked a Des Moines talk show host about the fact that once the caucuses are done, presidential hopefuls seem to rarely return to the places where they pressed the flesh with such passion for weeks earlier. He said Iowans used to that by now.

How sad.

Now the roadshow moves to the Granite State of New Hampshire! Who will actually be moving on?

New Hampshire

 

Rick Perry’s gone home to Texas, to “reassess” his campaign. We all know what that means. Just ask Herm Cain.

Michele Bachmann, after saying she’s staying in the race, canceled some campaign appearances in South Carolina.

That leaves Gingrich, Paul, Santorum, Romney, and the only sane person in the race, Huntsman.

Jon Huntsman

Perry and Bachmann may yet continue, but not for long.

And what’s at the end of the rainbow for these folks? More media coverage, for sure. The 24 hour news cycle now demands that each primary until the nomination is decided is the political equivalent of the Super Bowl. That makes it easier for the punditocracy to ply their trade, and cash those checks. By the way, did any of them forsee the “Santorum Surge”? Just asking.

Put bluntly, do any of these people really have what it takes to be President? Can Gingrich get past his past? Will Paul bury his racist and homophobic newsletters? Is Santorum, with his blather about airstrikes on Iran, for real? Is Romney now on a clear path to victory, or will the far right wing of his own party do him in?

For political junkies, this is manna from heaven.

For everyone else, maybe not so much.

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Does the Senate Have the Guts to Pass Healthcare Reform?

This past weekend’s vote to begin debate in the upper House was heartening, but anyone who follows politics knows it’s the first skirmish in a long battle. Credit ought to be given to Majority Leader Harry Reid for having the guts to see the first step through.

I have been critical of his leadership in the past, but I take it all back (can you do that in one post?). Harry Reid came through like a champ, not like some of his colleagues, and I’m not talking about Republicans. You don’t expect them to have any heart when it comes to providing quality affordable care to millions of Americans for whom that’s just a pipe dream now.

senator-harry-reid

I’m talking about  a few Senate Democrats, and that independent who dares to caucus with them. Joe Lieberman should have been tossed out on his ear the day he addressd the Republican National Convention on behalf of John McCain. Now he couldn’t wait until the last echoes of Saturday’s vote to allow debate to go on tv and try to eviscerate the public option. “If the public option is still in there, the only resort we have is to say no at the end to reporting the bill off the floor,” says the Senator from Connecticut. Ben Nelson of Nebraska isn’t much better.

What they’re saying is the next step, after a lot of contentious debate, may be for opponents of the bill to filibuster.  At that point, the only recourse may be the complex and misunderstood procress of reconciliation. Trust me, it’s not nearly as benign as it sounds. Suffice to say that’s how Bush got his two tax cuts through, but would it work for healthcare reform?

Reconciliation is about the only way you can get a bill through the Senate without the 60 votes necessary to bring it to the floor. That is, bypassing the usual obstructive devices, like the filibuster. The jury is still out of whether the health bill fits the criteria necessary to be eligible for reconciliation. Absent that, Harry Reid will have to find a couple of Republicans who will go along with the overwhelming majority of Democrats to get this thing done.

This is usually the cue for political junkies to look to the two senators from Maine, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins. Snowe, however, has as big a problem with the public option as Lieberman does. Make no mistake. A bill without a public option isn’t acceptable, nor should it be to President Obama (we’ll see).

So you tell me. Does this Senate have the guts to pass a healthcare reform bill with a public option?

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