A do-nothing House?

A do-nothing House?

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has accused Republicans in the House of Representatives of obstruction by not passing bills. What he’s not saying (and what you’re not hearing, depending on your source of news) is that there are hundreds of bills they’ve passed that are sitting on Reid’s desk waiting for a vote in the Senate. How many and how many pass unanimously? Well, you’ll have to listen in.

Leon Panetta, who was head of the CIA and later the Pentagon, during the time of our fight with an ascendant al Qaeda and with Iraq, has written a book, “Worthy Fights: A Memoir of Leadership in War and Peace”. In it, he’s brutally honest as to his assessment of the Obama administration’s war policies. Some of his observations about them coincide with what conservatives have been saying.

And a Name That Quote segment that could be Name That Column (but isn’t; I only have 10 minutes or less).

Mentioned links:

 ‘Do Nothing Congress?’ House Passed More Than 350 Bills That Sit on Harry Reid’s Desk, Says Congresswoman

A slapdash Secret Service detail isn’t what’s wrong with the White House – the real scandal is a President who is so complacent about protecting Americans

Panetta: ’30-year war’ and a leadership test for Obama

Getting some shopping done? If you're going to shop at Amazon, please consider clicking on my affiliate link. Thanks!

On Apple devices, you can subscribe to the podcast via iTunes.

If you're on Android, listen with Google Podcasts.

Stitcher Radio is another possibility for both Apple and Android devices. If you do download Stitcher to your phone, please use the promo code “ConsiderThis” to let them know where you heard about it.

Browser-based options are the Blubrry Network and Player.fm.

And if you have some other podcatcher or RSS reader, click here to get the direct feed and paste it wherever you need it.

I would love it if you would spread the word about the podcast! Click the Facebook, Twitter, and other icons (or all of them!) at the bottom of this post to recommend "Consider This!" to your social media audience.

Show transcript

With a divided Congress – a Democratic Senate and a Republican House of Representatives – there have been those who have been whining about how few bills have passed, and have blamed Republicans for the stonewalling. Most of the whining has come from MSNBC, with Ed Schultz displaying a graph showing the numbers since 1947. In the 2013/2014 fiscal year, it was a very small amount, something south of 200.

First of all, gauging the effectiveness of Congress by how many bills they’ve passed is ludicrous. It assumes that the more regulation Washington imposes on our lives, the better things are. Of course, if you suggest that one of those bills should be, say, for tightening border security, all of a sudden the numbers game is meaningless to them. Sorry, this is just a disingenuous argument on their part; they don’t really mean it.

Secondly, did you know that there were over 350 bills that were passed by the House and have been waiting for Harry Reid to bring them up for a vote in the Senate? If Ed Schultz knew, he was certainly not telling, and if he didn’t know, then he needs to get better staff members to find this stuff out. Either way, his audience, such as it is, is not getting the whole story.

“But”, one might say, “these are probably mostly hyper-partisan bills that the Senate would reject anyway.” And that would be a fair point to make. What about that vaunted ideal of “bipartisanship”? A bill repealing ObamaCare would be dead on arrival in the Senate, for instance, so the fact that it would be sitting on Harry Reid’s desk probably wouldn’t make much of a difference. Except for one thing. Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee notes that about 200 of the 350 were passed unanimously in the House. In addition to those, more than 100 were passed with 75% support of House Democrats.

The bipartisanship is there. But guys like Reid and Schultz are playing politics with bipartisanship and lying to you about Republicans. Not just with phony outrage at some imagined offense. They’re playing it with the laws of the land.

I was thinking about calling this segment something other than “Name That Quote”, where I would feature a short quote from someone and have you try to figure out who it is. And yes, they’re quotes that express what conservatives have been saying, but they come from the mouths of liberals. Well, there are so many quotes in the particular column that I was going to pull one from, that it’s really more like “Name That Column”.

So here we go; see if you can figure out who said this. The writer first notes that the President essentially threw the entire Intelligence community under the bus when he said “they” underestimated ISIS. As a side note, I will mention that Obama used the word “we” when the military took out bin Laden. But when things don’t go so well, it’s “they”. Anyway, after saying that, the writer continues:

The truth is that Obama is the one who underestimated ISIS, plunging his head ostrich-like into the sand and hoping they would go away without having to do anything to actually make them go away.

There were clear, unambiguous public warnings made nearly a year ago in front of the Foreign Affairs Committee that ISIS was on the march in Syria and Iraq.

But perhaps Obama missed them.

Hardly surprising when we discover yesterday that he has only attended 42.1 percent of his Presidential Daily intelligence briefings.

No wonder the Secret Service gets complacent when The Boss exudes complacency from every pore.

Yowsa! And as I said, there’s more, with nary a punch pulled.

So can you name someone who sits squarely on the left side of the aisle that would get this worked up over what conservatives have been saying for months? A few hints; this man had been one of Obama’s staunchest defenders, minimizing missteps while providing praise at every point possible. Oh, and he was very critical of our Constitution, especially the Second Amendment.

Yeah, you might know who I’m talking about now. These are the words of Piers Morgan, former talent show judge and former CNN opinion show host. He’s writing for the UK Daily Mail now, and it’s amazing to see the 180 he’s done since leaving CNN. Oh, I don’t think he’s rethought his ideas on civilians with guns, but can you imagine him saying this while he was on CNN? Yeah, me neither. I wonder why that is.

Leon Panetta, who was head of the CIA and later the Pentagon, during the time of our fight with an ascendant al Qaeda and with Iraq, has written a book, “Worthy Fights: A Memoir of Leadership in War and Peace”. In it, he’s brutally honest as to his assessment of the Obama administration’s war policies. Among them, by not pushing the Iraqi government harder to allow a residual U.S. force to remain when troops withdrew in 2011, we created a vacuum such that the Iraq couldn’t defend itself, which allowed ISIS to grow and gain a foothold. He said that such a deal he says could have been negotiated with more effort. Obama and his supporters, you may have heard, blamed the pullout mostly on Iraq’s conditions for staying. Panetta, though, thinks we could have done better.

Also, by drawing that “red line” for Syria on its use of chemical weapons, and then not doing anything when they crossed it, it cost the United States credibility then and is complicating efforts to create a coalition against the Islamic State now. Panetta thinks that this fight with ISIS is an opportunity to rebuild that squandered credibility.

When folks say that Obama has made us weaker, these are but two examples of how. It’s ironic that one of his criticisms of George W. Bush was that the world no longer liked or trusted us, yet now he can barely get a coalition of the size Bush got to fight an, arguably, bigger threat.

Filed under: GovernmentPartisanshipWar