During an interview on Sunday, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) suggested that if Bill Clinton were president that the fiscal issues facing the United States could be worked out.
Ryan, who has served in Congress since 1999 and was the GOP’s vice presidential nominee in 2012, told David Gregory on Meet the Press that “if we had a Clinton presidency, if we had Erskine Bowles chief-of-staff at the White House, or President of the United States, I think we would have fixed this fiscal mess by now.” Ryan added, “That’s not the kind of presidency we’re dealing with right now.”
Noel Sheppard, who covered the story at Newsbusters, snarked, “one wonders if Ryan meant a Bill Clinton presidency or a Hillary Clinton presidency.” That aside, Ryan has a point that’s worth expounding upon.
Despite friction between then-President Clinton during the 1990s, Republicans in Congress were able to pass a balanced budget and enact welfare reform and pass capital gains tax cuts. While not all was perfect during these years as Republicans began their slide toward big government, a Democratic president and Republican-controlled legislature were able to reach a compromises that led to a largely prosperous era.
Political junkies have long known that the relationship between the White House and Sec of State Hillary Clinton is far from great. I am actually surprised she’s held on this long— considering the vicious exchanges they both had (along with Bill) during the 2008 campaign.
Maybe all is forgiven in politics? Not really. Last year, the Hillary-Obama relationship reached a boiling point over the invasion of Libya. The Sec of State— who was pushing for military action— was not pleased with Obama’s lack of resolution on the issue:
Obviously, she’s not happy with dealing with a president who can’t decide if today is Tuesday or Wednesday, who can’t make his mind up…She’s exhausted, tired.
Fast forward to the Benghazi embassy attacks— where Ambassador Chris Stevens was killed— and we can again see the tension boiling.
It will be many years before the definitive book about the 2008 Presidential campaign is written, probably long after most of the participants are dead. After all, it took over eighty years for a truly definitive look at the Election of 1920, and more than forty for a similar volume to be written about the 1960 Election. However, for those of us who are political junkies and lived through it, Game Change by John Heilemann and Mark Halperin.
This has been an interesting week, largely due to the reaction towards ObamaCare and these town hall meetings springing up all in different parts of the country. People are angry and they want to be heard. Whether politicians want to listen is a different story, as always.
Liberals and Democrats are correct to point out that they’ve previously been shut out of public debate on certain issues, such as the war in Iraq. Republicans mishandled and chided the anti-war crowd, sometimes questioned the patriotism, either directly or indirectly, of those speaking out against what they saw as a wrong.
The GOP chief knows the gig is up:
In a frank and private memo sent today to Republican National Commitee members, the RNC chairman acknowledges that the GOP has grown too addicted to ideology, places politics before policy, and is bereft of ideas — and that it’s imperative that the party shift towards a genuine effort to develop concrete policy solutions to people’s problems in order to rescue itself.
I have a few quick ideas:
Think about it! Four years ago, the Republican Party held the White House and both houses of Congress. Now, the Democrats have won the Presidency by a sizable margin, gained additional seats in the majority Democratic House, and could possibly hold a sixty-vote majority in the Senate—large enough to end any Republican initiated filibuster.
First of all, consider the magnitude of the Republican loss. What support shifted from four years ago?
During a press conference yesterday, President Barack Obama slammed Republicans who are focusing on the talking points that his administration used to try to set the narrative after the terrorist attack on the American outpost in Benghazi:
Repeated GOP attacks claiming the White House covered up the truth about the September attack in Benghazi, Libya, are nothing more than a politically motivated “side-show,” President Obama said Monday.
“The whole issue of talking points, frankly, throughout this process has been a side-show,” Obama said during a press conference with British Prime Minister David Cameron. “The fact that this keeps getting churned out, frankly, has a lot to do with political motivations.”
“We don’t have time to be playing these kinds of political games here in Washington. We should be focused on what are we doing to protect them,” Obama said. “We dishonor them when we turn things like this into a political circus.”
The Obama administration initially claimed the Benghazi attack, ending with the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, was the result of an anti-U.S. protest gone wrong.
The claim come just days after State Department whistleblowers testified before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Gregory Hicks, who served as the top diplomat in Libya after the death of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, explained that it was clear from the very beginning that the incident was a terrorist attack.
What we now know about the post-Benghazi narrative that the Obama Administration tried to create is nothing short of stunning. On Friday, ABC News reported that the talking points produced by the CIA underwent 12 different revisions with significant input coming from the State Department, which was run by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton:
White House emails reviewed by ABC News suggest the edits were made with extensive input from the State Department. The edits included requests from the State Department that references to the Al Qaeda-affiliated group Ansar al-Sharia be deleted as well references to CIA warnings about terrorist threats in Benghazi in the months preceding the attack.
In an email to officials at the White House and the intelligence agencies, State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland took issue with including that information because it “could be abused by members [of Congress] to beat up the State Department for not paying attention to warnings, so why would we want to feed that either? Concerned …”
The paragraph was entirely deleted.
Like the final version used by Ambassador Rice on the Sunday shows, the CIA’s first drafts said the attack appeared to have been “spontaneously inspired by the protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo” but the CIA version went on to say, “That being said, we do know that Islamic extremists with ties to al-Qa’ida participated in the attack.” The draft went on to specifically name the al Qaeda-affiliated group named Ansar al-Sharia.
House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) didn’t mince any words for the White House during a press conference yesterday — he wants the White House to cooperate with investigators by turning over e-mails relating to the terrorist attack on the American consulate in Benghazi, Libya:
House Speaker John Boehner is demanding that the White House release a series of unclassified emails related to the Sept. 11 fatal terrorist attacks on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya.
Boehner is seeking emails Republican lawmakers say were sent the day after the attack from a senior state department official to her superiors in which she reported that she told the Libyan ambassador that Islamic terrorists were responsible for the attack.
“The State Department would not allow our committees to keep copies of this email when it was reviewed,” Boehner said. “I would call on the President to order the State Department to release this email so the American people can see it.”
The letters Boehner is seeking would show the State Department was aware it was a terrorist attack well before Obama sent U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice on a round of Sunday talk shows to push the YouTube video as the cause.
His demand comes a day after the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held a hearing on startling revelations brought forward by State Department whistleblowers that shined light on the events that led up to, during, and after the attack.