The disloyal opposition

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By John Barnhart

    There are several reasons why I have no use for the “Democratic” Party.  One of the top reasons, and the one that originally began souring my opinion of it decades ago, was its willingness to play the roll of disloyal opposition to a Republican president when it came to foreign policy in an effort to score partisan political points against him. One of the most egregious cases of this was the Iran-Contra nonsense when “Democrats” in Congress used a series of hearings to try to take down President Ronald Reagan. It didn’t work, but I’m sure it fed Republican animosity contributing to the intensity of  their  effort, a decade later, to impeach Slick Willy.

    Now, House Republicans seem to be picking up the “Democrats” disgusting habit of playing disloyal opposition for partisan gain.
    Faced with a fast developing situation in Libya, President Barack Obama joined a NATO effort, with a United Nations and Arab League blessing, to use military force against Moammar Gadhafi in support of rebels seeking to overthrow this monster. While I don’t think his approach has been brilliant, I believe it is something that needed to be done, and done quickly.
    Now, Republicans are on President Obama’s case for not consulting Congress beforehand. Keep in mind that Congress, at that time, was still trying to pass a budget for 2011, something that institution was unable to do last year even when one party controlled both the House and the Senate. Congressman Bob Goodlatte has even gone so far as to join Congressman Ron Paul, one of the House of Representatives’ biggest loons, to cosponsor a resolution that expresses the sense of Congress that President Obama is required to obtain advance specific authorization for an American military response to the civil war in Libya.
    Our Constitution created a fairly powerful presidency and it made him commander in chief of our armed forces because it was obvious that situations could arise in which the president would need to make a military response without asking Congress. Things have changed a lot since the late 18th century. We have instant communications and a year-round Congress, something the founding fathers probably never envisioned. However, we also can have fast developing situations in which the president needs to take quick action without having to run a gauntlet of partisan hissing and spitting first.
    Instead of playing “Democrat” by second guessing President Obama on his foreign policy decisions, House Republicans need to concentrate on taking effective action on our soaring deficits and rapidly growing national debt. The United States still remains the number one economy in the world, and we’re still the biggest, hairiest gorilla in global finance, but there are still limits to how far even we go before we face a day of reckoning. We’ve already seen evidence that day may be coming sooner, rather than later, when Standard & Poors put us on notice last month  that our sovereign debt’s AAA bond rating may be in jeopardy.
    Republicans need to make sure, as far as it depends on them, that all partisan bickering ends at the water’s edge, putting America ahead of political party. There will be plenty of that to spare when they fight the battle of the deficit as President Obama is already in campaign mode and the Senate is still controlled by “Democrats” with a hyper-partisan Senate majority leader presiding over that chamber.
    Meanwhile, I’m reaching the point where I’m getting disgusted with both political parties.