WHO CARES WHAT THOSE PEASANTS OUT THERE WANT? – AT 8:15 A.M. ET: John Fund of The Wall Street Journal reports that Democrats, bracing for a major defeat in November, are preparing for a lame-duck session of Congress to enact their pet legislation, regardless of the will of the people. The arrogance is breathtaking:
"I've got lots of things I want to do" in a lame duck, Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D., W. Va.) told reporters in mid June. North Dakota's Kent Conrad, chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, wants a lame-duck session to act on the recommendations of President Obama's deficit commission, which is due to report on Dec. 1. "It could be a huge deal," he told Roll Call last month. "We could get the country on a sound long-term fiscal path." By which he undoubtedly means new taxes in exchange for extending some, but not all, of the Bush-era tax reductions that will expire at the end of the year.
In the House, Arizona Rep. Raul Grijalva, co-chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, told reporters last month that for bills like "card check"—the measure to curb secret-ballot union elections—"the lame duck would be the last chance, quite honestly, for the foreseeable future."
Can you imagine making the elimination of a secret ballot for workers a priority? What has happened to the Democratic Party?
Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin, chair of the Senate committee overseeing labor issues, told the Bill Press radio show in June that "to those who think [card check] is dead, I say think again."
He must be so proud.
Other lame-duck possibilities? Senate ratification of the New Start nuclear treaty, a federally mandated universal voter registration system to override state laws, and a budget resolution to lock in increased agency spending.
Hooray for progress.
It's been almost 30 years since anything remotely contentious was handled in a lame-duck session, but that doesn't faze Democrats who have jammed through ObamaCare and are determined to bring the financial system under greater federal control.
Get this one:
Mike Allen of Politico.com reports one reason President Obama failed to mention climate change legislation during his recent, Oval Office speech on the Gulf oil spill was that he wants to pass a modest energy bill this summer, then add carbon taxes or regulations in a conference committee with the House, most likely during a lame-duck session. The result would be a climate bill vastly more ambitious, and costly for American consumers and taxpayers, than moderate "Blue Dogs" in the House would support on the campaign trail.
Desperate times may be seen as calling for desperate measures, and this November the election results may well make Democrats desperate.
COMMENT: Pretty chilling, huh? The people be damned. Election results be damned. My question is: If they're willing to do these things, what else are they willing to do to restrict democracy and expand government power?
One could argue that at least FDR had a public mandate for great social programs, and we can debate the value of those programs. There is no mandate today. But there is a very arrogant party, based largely on the coasts, that has its own vision of society, and will try to impose it.
And be scared, be very scared, if Republicans do not gain enough votes in the Senate this November to block the next Supreme Court nominee. True, the next resignation will probably be Ruth Ginsburg, to be replaced by another liberal. But swing vote Anthony Kennedy is 74. And among the four solid conservatives on the Court, Antonin Scalia is also 74. It is quite possible for Barack Obama, if elected to a second term, and with a Democratic Senate, to push through three more appointments, and change America for the next 25 years.
July 10, 2010