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Korobov: The toothless GOP

BY MICHAEL KOROBOV | MARCH 09, 2015 5:00 AM

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A political party has no meaning unless it stands for certain principles. Otherwise, it’s just a group of people who enjoy making buttons and posters in their free time. It is becoming increasingly apparent that the current Republican Party is the latter. Either that, or they are being led by those that wish to deceive them.

It happened on the day that the entire world (except for President Obama, who was too busy) watched Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to Congress. John Boehner duped his own party and used the distraction to push through a clean Department of Homeland Security bill, which would fund Obama’s executive action on immigration.

The debacle started back in the summer of last year when Obama, who was frustrated with Congress choosing “to do nothing,” put on his crown and acted alone. The Republicans, staunchly opposed to the president’s actions, yelled and screamed but claimed they couldn’t do anything because at the time the Democrats controlled the Senate. After a landslide midterm election in the fall, they negotiated to settle the issue of Homeland Security funding (which includes the executive action) when the new Republican Senate was initiated.

Now the Republicans are out of excuses. Boehner knew the clean bill would pass because it relied heavily on Democrat support: Approximately 70 percent of House Republicans voted against it. What kind of leader stabs their party in the back like that, the same party whose constituents have donated millions to put these politicians in office to represent their values?

Boehner had previously described the executive action as “lawless and unconstitutional.” He was not alone — many other Republicans classified the action as “unconstitutional.” Article VI of the Constitution requires House representatives to take an oath vowing to “support and defend the Constitution.”

Either they were all lying, or have violated their oaths and should be removed from office.

The Democrats portrayed the possible Homeland Security shutdown as reckless. After all, “homeland security” is supposedly at stake. In reality, a shutdown doesn’t actually mean a shutdown. It only refers to employees who are deemed nonessential personnel, which represent only 20 percent of the Homeland Security. These are the same people who go home after 5 p.m. and on the weekends anyway. An article in Slate looked into this issue and found that “not that much” would actually happen if the Homeland Security shut down. Boehner knew this; there are no excuses.

The Republicans are not taken seriously anymore in Congress, even though they now represent the majority. Anytime there’s gridlock they get blamed by the media because the general consensus is “you’ll cave in anyway, you always do, so just stop wasting our time.” They treat the principles that are supposed to define their party like a lunch preference. They’d prefer Chinese food, but if you really ask nicely, they’re fine with burgers, too. 

The result of this wishy-washy leadership is that the Democrats are growing increasingly brazen in what they can get away with. White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest has now indicated that the president is “very interested” in raising taxes through executive action as well. Why wouldn’t he be?

I wish I could blame them, but I can’t. With the current leadership, the Republicans will probably go along with the tax hike, too.


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