Four Weeks from Oblivion, GOP Congress Slumbers On

The session of Congress that occurs after the just–completed election and the swearing in of the new Congress in January is called a lame duck session. It will last four weeks.

RJ Matson CQ Roll Call

These are the last weeks Republicans will be in control of both houses of Congress and the White House. This was supposed to be a golden age of conservative accomplishment. In reality, it was two more years of the Can’t–Do Caucus telling voters what they promised on the campaign trail at home, can’t be done in DC.

Next year the charade will be over, because the left will control the House.

This brief session will constitute another Gohmert Moment, which I’ve named after Louie Gohmert, the genuine Texas conservative congressman.

When Gohmert first entered Congress he and other freshmen were excited about the prospect of passing truly conservative legislation. That was before he met the timid, country club conservatives who comprise House leadership.

Gohmert explained at his first GOP House conference the leadership’s caretaker conservatives were worried. They acknowledged the campaign has promised big things. But in Washington there was “a small chance” Republicans might lose the majority in two years. To play it safe, leadership wanted to do small things, win the election and keep the majority.

Then, leadership promised it would be time to do big things.

Gohmert disagreed, “If there’s any chance we might lose, then this is the time to do the big stuff.” Gohmert was ignored. He’s been ignored ever since.

Rachel Bovard, of the Conservative Partnership Institute, reminds us of what could be done if our placeholder GOP believed in the issues on which it campaigned.

Bovard suggests this last GOP Congress, “take a cue from the Democrats’ playbook in 2010. Like present-day Republicans, House Democrats were then about to lose their majority. Republicans, like now, were expanding their majority in the Senate. But in the face of waning power, Democrats did not fold. They fought.”

The left focused on Cultural Marxism and one foreign policy initiative. The Cultural Marxist hot buttons appealed solely to left’s base — a concept as foreign to GOP leadership as quantum physics is to a cat. The goal was repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” so homosexuals in the military could go ahead and flaunt it, and pass the DREAM Act, an amnesty for younger illegal aliens. The foreign policy initiative was the NEW START nuclear arms treaty. Sure to rev up any surviving ‘Ban the Bomb’ marchers from the 60’s.

Bovard explains, “Democrats intentionally chose to aggressively move forward on controversial legislation on which they had previously punted — likely driven by the fact that they were not sure when they’d again control both houses of Congress and the White House.”

The left was successful on two out of three. Only the DREAM Act failed.

If our conservatives–in–name–only Republicans followed that successful template, top legislative priorities during this lame duck session would be terminating the funding of the organ harvesters at Planned Parenthood; pulling the plug on PBS, NPR, NEA and NEH; fully funding President Trump’s border wall, and reforming immigration law by ending the anchor baby and asylum scams.

Then conservatives would miss them when they were gone.

William Galston, a former advisor to Bill Clinton, said Democrats were successful because, “They were prepared to pull out all the stops.”

Unfortunately, today’s conservative “stop” is Curator of the Senate Mitch McConnell, who follows an extra–Constitutional policy of requiring 60 votes to pass legislation in the Senate, while a simple majority works fine in the House.

And what are the curator’s priorities for the lame duck session? The Hill reports Mitch wants to pass a criminal justice “reform” bill, a pork–laden Agriculture bill, a foreign aid measure and ratify judicial nominations — a routine task in any other Congress but an activity for which this pack of seat–warmers expects fulsome praise.

Do you see any correlation between what the conservative base wants passed and what the housebroken conservatives intend to pass? It’s no wonder many conservatives were guided to the polls by muscle memory rather than enthusiasm.

Evidently lame duck is a dish that can only be prepared by leftist chefs.

As these dissemblers stagger toward the finish line of this Congress, I feel much like Oliver Cromwell did in 1653 when he dismissed the equally wretched Long Parliament:

“It is high time for me to put an end to your sitting in this place, which you have dishonored by your contempt of all virtue, …[you are] enemies to all good government; ye are a pack of mercenary wretches, and would like Esau sell your country for a mess of pottage, and like Judas betray your God for a few pieces of money.

“In the name of God, go!”

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Mitch McConnell: How to Win Without Doing Anything

The best summary of the 2018 midterm elections came from National Review, that hotbed of Never Trumpism. David French wrote, “Republicans solidified their theoretical advantages in the [Senate].”

“Theoretical” being the operative word. With Curator of the Senate Mitch McConnell in charge, any conservative changes in the status quo were always only “theoretical.” That’s why the big winner of this election was McConnell.

Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle, GA

As this is written the left has picked up 29 House seats and lost 3 seats in the Senate. That’s not a “blue wave”. It’s more like the splash on your shoes after a lobbyist’s SUV drives by during a DC rainstorm, while you wait for a bus.

In Clinton’s first midterm he lost 54 House seats and 8 Senate seats and that was before he went all Harvey Weinstein on the help.

Nobel Prize–winning Obama, beloved by all, lost 63 House seats and 6 Senate seats in 2010. As Ed Rogers pointed out, the left’s victory didn’t even exploit the alleged national loathing for Trump. “Democrats have underperformed in comparison with the historical markers and general expectations of a midterm cycle. The president’s party loses 37 seats in the House on average in midterm elections when his approval is below 50 percent — but Democrats aren’t projected to pick up nearly that many seats.”

Some of these numbers could change by the time you read this because Democrats have dispatched vote–finding teams for the undecided races. These grave robbers and dumpster divers somehow manage to unearth previously hidden leftist votes in much the same way the French find truffles.

Mitch McConnell, Architect of Inertia, wins because even the most rabid members of the base won’t expect him to pass conservative legislation when the House is held by Antifa.

Had Republicans held the House, the additional three new GOP senators would have been an unmitigated disaster for McConnell. The pressure to finally pass legislation conservatives have been promised during the campaign, but somehow gets lost on the trip back to DC, would have been overwhelming.

A relieved McConnell will spend the next two years cheerfully functioning as the Human Resources office for the White House judicial nomination team. After each confirmation, Mitch will claim the approved judge is a victory for Senate conservatives.

The truth is every judge is a victory for the man McConnell secretly despises: Donald Trump. His victory in 2016 upset all the curator’s careful plans. With Hillary in the White House, Mitch could be his natural, passive–aggressive self. Trump ended the ‘if we only controlled the White House’ excuse Senate country club conservatives used to justify their legislative coma.

Even after Trump made the McConnell family a two–income household again — his wife is Sec. of Transportation — Mitch showed his gratitude by refusing to support Trump’s budget, Trump’s wall and Trump’s effort to shrink the federal government. McConnell is responsible for 90 percent of the failure to pass Trump’s legislative agenda.

Now McConnell is mumbling about working with Democrats. This means he’s ready to reopen the Pork Palace under the guise of “bipartisanship”, because the only activity the two tribes in Incumbentstan can agree upon is spending money.

McConnell will enjoy the extra three–vote pad on judicial confirmation votes even though he did nothing to produce the unprecedented Senate victories.

He avoided the immigration issue. He didn’t force Democrats to cast votes that would not play well at home. McConnell did almost nothing aside from his HR duties.

The president, on the other hand, was a campaigning machine. As Laura Hollis pointed out, “[Trump] was instrumental in the GOP victories in Florida, Indiana, Texas, Ohio, Tennessee, Missouri and North Dakota.”

Trump won running his issues and not those of the housebroken conservatives hiding in the Swamp. Frank Cannon and Paul Dupont summed it up nicely, “The GOP [McConnell and the ‘leadership’] cannot afford to settle for a “truce” strategy on social issues, surrendering to Democrats the power to define the cultural narrative. This repeatedly has proven to be electoral suicide. If Republicans are to capitalize on the Democrats’ growing weakness, they must campaign unapologetically as conservatives, as President Trump did in 2016, or else resign themselves to eventual defeat.”

Ed Rogers has sage advice for the curator, “Voters had a chance to repudiate Trump and they did not. Much of the commentariat has said this year’s elections are about who we are as a country and what America is all about. Well, a lot of America seems to be about supporting Trump.”

If McConnell — who has a lower approval rating in Kentucky than Trump — can’t grasp that fact he needs to get out of the way.

Trump Says “Adios” to Birthright Citizenship

Ending birthright citizenship, better known as dropping the anchor baby, is the most significant illegal immigration reform the President Trump has announced. With a single executive order, he unplugs a beacon that attracts scammers from the world over. He also attacks a visible manifestation of the Foreigners First mindset that has infected the State Department, and the rest of the federal bureaucracy, since the 60s.

Gary McCoy, Shiloh, IL

For those late to the discussion, birthright citizenship is the GPS theory of national allegiance. If your pregnant wife was sitting in the stands at Lambeau Field and she got so excited she gave birth, the resulting baby would not be entitled to season tickets for the rest of his life. But if your wife, Consuela, was an illegal alien in a sanctuary city, who gave birth in a sanctuary maternity ward, your new child would be a Yankee Doodle Dandy. An instant US citizen with all the welfare rights that come with the birth certificate.

Trump will end that.

As is customary in these situations the left and its propaganda arm the Opposition Media instantly sprang to the defense of this devaluing of US citizenship. Even worse, the OpMedia had no trouble recruiting reflexive anti–Trumpers like Paul Ryan (R–INO). Ryan evidently liberated by his banishment to private life, stabbed Trump in the back using his favorite tactic of preemptive surrender. He claims anchor babies aweigh will require an amendment to the Constitution.

The left’s defense of birthright citizenship relies much on sentiment and sad stories and is light on facts. The talking points read like Shotgun Joe Biden wrote the memo. Here are the main defenses of this nonsensical geography theory of national obligation:

  1. The plain language of the 14th Amendment guarantees birthright citizenship.
  2. Birthright citizenship has been a part of the US since the beginning.
  3. The Supreme Court has ruled illegals are entitled to birthright citizenship.
  4. Throwing anchor babies overboard required amending the Constitution.

Each point is factually incorrect. Here is the plain language of the 14th Amendment: “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.” The key phrase is “subject to the jurisdiction thereof.” The author of the citizenship amendment, Sen. Jacob Howard, who ought to know what he meant, explained, “This will not, of course, include persons born in the United States who are foreigners, aliens, who belong to the families of ambassadors or foreign ministers accredited to the government of the United States, but will include every other class of person.”

This was tested in the case of Elk v. Wilkins where an Indian sued, contending he had birthright citizenship. Elk lost. The court ruled, “No one can become a citizen of a nation without its consent.” It took passage of a law in 1924 to grant birthright citizenship to American Indians.

The Supreme Court has never addressed the question of birthright citizenship for illegals. The case defenders cite, Wong Kim Ark, concerned two Chinese diplomats who were in the country legally and had a child. In their wisdom, the judges used subjectship under English common law, which the Founders had specifically rejected in the Declaration of Independence, to arrive at a decision that would be overturned today. The case said nothing about aliens in the country illegally.

Mark Levin said, “Not until the 1960’s [was] the Constitution …interpreted to convey birthright citizenship on the children of illegal aliens. And not due to any congressional statute or court ruling, but decisions by various departments and agencies of the federal bureaucracy.”

The federal bureaucracy is controlled by Trump, intermittently at least, so he can tell the executive branch to close the border maternity ward. An amendment isn’t necessary.

Trump should make the order retroactive to the first day of the administration. Certainly, the left will file a lawsuit and fall into a trap of their own making. This is the defining case that can overturn Wong and restore the original intent to the 14th Amendment and not the Hallmark Card legal philosophy that the government has followed for over 50 years. That’s a victory that will last long after the Trump administration.

Finally, Paul Ryan’s back–stabbing response when asked about Trump’s most important policy reinforces my advice to conservatives. Go on strike when you vote in congressional races. Conservatives should vote for every Republican candidate except Representatives. On that line write “On Strike.” Without the conservative base, always taken for granted, Republicans can’t win. In 2020, after the country club conservatives who survive have learned their lesson, resume voting as normal.

Conservatives will never see change in Congress until they change who’s in Congress. Going on strike is the place to start.