Have you noticed a pattern to the travels of President Obama? By hosting campaign style events in Virginia, Indiana, Florida and now Colorado, the president is tipping his hand. He and his team plan to visit swing states from the 2008 election as often as possible to store up support for the re-election bid that will come for 2012. His administration intends to simply remain in campaign mode throughout his terms as president.
The alleged candidate of change, now the President of the U.S. has fallen far short in his brief amount of time in office. A glaring spotlight has shined on President Obama's lack of leadership. In order to meet a fabricated deadline for his spending bill, masked as economic stimulus, President Obama outsourced the legislation to Speaker Pelosi and her cohorts in the House. She allowed the bill to become a wish list of every liberal spending program on the party's agenda for the past 30 years. We now know that the rush for legislation to sign was another fabrication. The same president who demanded immediate action - to the point of his Democrat leadership ramming it through before anyone even read the more than 1,000 pages of the legislation - felt comfortable to leave Washington for a three day vacation break in Chicago with his family.
Remember when President Bush went to Crawford to spend time at the ranch and all the grief he took for his 'time off' from Washington? Where are those critics now?
Senator Judd Gregg has now recovered from whatever it was that caused his extreme lack of judgement about joining the team at the White House as Secretary of Commerce. First it was coming forward that this White House intends to manipulate the national census for the benefits of the Democrats in Congress and the re-election of this president. For the first time, the census will be under the oversight of Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel. The same Chief of Staff who is also a politician from Chicago and known for his extreme partisanship in Washington. He learned the ropes as a member of the staff for the Clinton administration.
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs says there is "historical precedent" to take the census out of the Commerce Department and into the White House for supervision. That is not true but he receives a pass from the blinded by adoration national press.
You may remember the cries that the Bush administration was grabbing too much control in the Executive branch. Yet, who knew that the change promised by this new president was for his team to just move in and site "historical precedent" if questioned?
Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele released the following statement:
"It is disappointing that President Obama would make the census about politics rather than an accurate count of the American people by taking control of the process away from career professionals at the Department of Commerce and putting the most partisan chief of staff since H.R. Haldeman in the Nixon Administration in charge."
Speaker of the House Pelosi and seven other Democrats rushed through the spending bill so that their vacation plans to Italy would not be postponed. President Obama sent a jet for Senator Sherrod Brown for him to fly back from Ohio and his mother's wake to vote in favor of the spending bill. Senator Gregg, who didn't resign his seat before confirmation as Commerce Secretary, voted against the spending bill. A fiscal conservative, he was not able to get on board with the bill.
President Obama went to visit the Caterpillar plant in East Peoria, Illinois last week. He told the workers nervous about the security of their manufacturing jobs there that he was told by their CEO Jim Owens that some of the 22,000 layed off workers would be recalled for work with the signing of the bill. This was the same day, back in Washington, that Press Secretary Gibbs declared the Columbia Free Trade agreement all but dead. And who is the now primary buyer of the big machines manufactured by Caterpillar? That's right - the country of Columbia.
Caterpillar executives have been quite vocal in their support of the trade agreement with Columbia. 63% of Caterpillar's sales are overseas. Pelosi's Democrats in the House, insisted that the "Buy American" provision remain in the spending bill. The European Union has begun to express much displeasure with this provision and the protectionist implications.
Senator Gregg is a free-trader. Perhaps he hoped to change the Obama administration's insistence on rewarding American union bosses who took him into the White House. Perhaps he hoped to be a voice for all the small business owners that employ 75% of the American workforce, yet will receive almost no benefit from the spending bill.
Now, Caterpillar CEO Jim Owens says, "The truth is we're going to have more layoffs before we start hiring again. It's going to take some time before that stimulus bill means rehiring."
Senator Gregg must have come to the realization that he would be a seat warmer in this new administration. He could be pointed to as the "bipartisan" outreach of this administration. He was window dressing. Fortunately for his own self esteem, he realized this before the confirmation process moved forward.
The Republican alternative to the spending bill just signed today in Denver, in the swing state of Colorado with the former Senator from Colorado, now the Interior Secretary present, was one of tax cuts, promotion of free markets and stimulating a favorable environment for business investment. It is a time proven formula. A Republican as Commerce Secretary would know that.
By insisting on taking the census into the White House, the Democrats will push for using the guesstimate method of counting people in this country. It is unconstitutional. The method of counting people is laid out in the Constitution as a visual head count. By guessing how many people are in any given district, the Democrats intend to grow the districts dominated by minorities, typically those voting for Democrats. This is an intentional malfeasance of power.
While President Obama would like for us to think of him as Abe Lincoln, perhaps he would be wise to remember how the "team of rivals" concept worked out for him.
This administration heavy with Chicago pols is making the Clinton administration look like amateur hour for smoke and mirrors.