Cong. Quayle Says Obama Acting without Authority

Our Founders designed a government that purposely restricts the President from enacting policy without the approval of the legislative branch.  We have a system of checks and balances for a reason.  Unfortunately, that system is coming under attack from President Obama as he seeks to create policy without approval, or even input, from Congress.

We’ve seen numerous examples of this recently.  We saw it when the President unilaterally enacted significant changes to immigration enforcement policy.  We saw it when he sought to undo a Supreme Court decision by ending the 287(g) enforcement agreement with Arizona law enforcement.  We’ve seen it in the form of President Obama’s policy ‘czars’ and the President’s use of ‘recess’ appointments when Congress wasn’t in fact in recess.

The American people sternly rebuked President Obama in 2010 by giving Republicans a large majority in the House.  But rather than listen to this profound expression of democratic will, the President has consistently sought to sidestep Congress.  I wrote about these important issues in an Op-Ed published earlier this week in the Washington Times.  Take a look at it, and let me know what you think.

The consequences of executive overreach are on full display in the form of Obamacare.  This law was rammed through Congress using every legislative trick in the book.  The American people were shut out of the debate around this bill and it was enacted behind closed doors.  Even before full implementation, Obamacare has extensively damaged our healthcare system, our economy and our freedom.  Premiums have risen, patient choice has declined and jobs have disappeared.  Obamacare epitomizes the worst in government overreach and it must go.

On Wednesday, I was proud to join with all of my House Republican colleagues and several Democrats to vote to repeal Obamacare in full.  Once full repeal is achieved, we can make effective, market-based reforms that will cut costs and increase access.  I hope that we will achieve full repeal long before the American people are stuck with all of the astounding costs of this bill, and all of the onerous mandates and regulations it puts in place.  I won’t stop fighting until the bill is repealed.

You can see my Floor Speech calling for my colleagues to vote in favor of repeal here.

I mentioned the termination of the 287(g) agreement earlier, and I had the chance to bring this up with Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director John Morton this week.  Specifically, I asked Mr. Morton why the Department of Homeland Security had terminated the 287(g) agreement with Arizona just hours after the Supreme Court’s decision on S.B. 1070, but has still taken no action to terminate the agreement with Cook County, Illinois even though officials there have been acting in direct contravention to federal immigration statutes.  Director Morton seemed to indicate that the Obama Administration has no plans to take the same measures against Democrat-controlled Cook County as it did against Arizona after S.B. 1070.  You can watch our exchange in the Border and Maritime Subcommittee here.

Next week the House will debate and vote on defense appropriations for Fiscal Year 2013.  I’ll be in touch then to update you on that issue, and other events that occur next week.  Have a great week!

Administration Eases Burdensome Work Requirement for Welfare Recipients

By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued notice that it is rewriting the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) reform law of 1996. Specifically, HHS is notifying states that they may waive the law’s requirement that welfare recipients must seek work to be eligible for benefits.

Representative Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) denounced the move calling it “a blatant violation of the law. The whole point of the work requirement was to get people to pull themselves out of poverty. The purpose of this reform was to convert welfare dependency from a way of life into just a temporary condition. By waiving this requirement HHS is saying that it’s okay to make dependency a permanent lifestyle. This is a disservice both to taxpayers and to the welfare recipients.”

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius characterized Jordan’s remarks as “an illustration of the clashing visions the President has said voters will have to choose between this November. As the GOP sees it, work is the center of the universe. But is this what most Americans really want out of life?”

“We know that people usually prefer leisure to work,” Sebelius argued. “Most only work because they feel they must. They look forward to the day they can retire. All we are doing here is bringing that day forward for as many people as we can. I mean, why should we try to force those who are already out of the workforce to get jobs that they’ll only hold until they retire? Isn’t that just wasted motion?”

The secretary dismissed statistics indicating that the TANF reform has helped nearly three million families get off the welfare rolls. “Republicans would have everyone believe that this is a sign of progress,” Sebelius said. “What they overlook is the significant reduction in leisure this represents. Parents who could’ve been spending more time with their children, watching TV, or just hanging out are now condemned to the wage-slavery that the work requirement has imposed on them.”

Sebelius hastened to add that the new HHS directive “doesn’t require states to waive the work requirement. States in thrall to the GOP’s vision may continue to reduce the number of people carried on their welfare rolls if they want. We’ll just give the federal aid saved to other states that are more in sync with the president’s vision.”

A recent Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) report calculated that the average taxpaying American has to work 197 days a year to pay for the cost of government—a statistic that Sebelius says “makes my point. The more people we can liberate from this treadmill of toil the greater will be the sum total of happiness in our society.”

Poll May Lead to Campaign Strategy Shift

A recent National Geographic poll showing that Americans think President Obama would do better against an invasion from outer space than rival Mitt Romney has Obama campaign strategists thinking.

“When you think about it, isn’t protecting the planet from being conquered by space monsters the most important thing that any person could do?” mused Obama campaign adviser David Axelrod. “And can there be any doubt that the President would easily outshine anyone else on such a task? After all, remember, he’s the one who killed bin-Laden. On the other hand, there’s no evidence that Romney has ever killed anyone.”

Axelrod admitted that he was “unsure of how we can best exploit this. Maybe we can use a a clip from the Independence Day movie showing Will Smith punching out that alien. I don’t think it would be hard for voters to imagine President Obama doing the same thing in real life. I have also seen reports that giant alien space craft are headed toward Earth. Maybe the President can make a speech or hold a press conference to help call voters attention to this possible danger and his superior fitness for dealing with it.”

“At the very least, this type of existential threat could make all the other campaign issues seem petty,” Axelrod added. “After all, losing your job, having your house foreclosed, and being forced to buy health insurance would have to be considered minor inconveniences compared to being vaporized by death rays from outer space.”

Complaints about Unpaid Campaign Bills Rejected

A repeated pattern of failure to reimburse communities for the added expense incurred to police campaign events hasn’t fazed the Obama for America campaign to reelect the president. Cities in California, Nevada, and New Hampshire have registered complaints with the campaign over its refusal to pay.

Campaign Manager Jim Messina rejected the complaints saying that “having the president visit your town is an honor for which the local residents should be willing to pay. Not everyone is graced by the presence of this great man. The few who are should be expected to pay for the privilege.”

Messina called the typical $25,000 to $35,000 costs incurred by these complaining cities “small potatoes compared with the amounts people normally pay for an audience with the president. Besides, complaining, in my opinion, isn’t smart. The president is a powerful man. He can send a lot of benefits or headaches your way depending on whether he sees you as a friend or a foe.”

Senate Leadership Refuses Vote on Obama Tax Plan

Despite insistent pleas from Republicans, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev) steadfastly refuses to allow a vote on President Obama’s proposal to extend the Bush Era tax cuts for families making under $250,000 per year. Neither will he permit a vote on the GOP proposal to extend those cuts for all taxpayers.

“Look, the president’s objective has already been achieved,” Reid contended. “All the media reported that the President proposed tax cuts for the middle class. For us to debate the specifics or to attempt to pass a bill would only muddy the waters and obscure that message.”

One of the specifics that may be troubling Reid is that the president’s proposal would, if enacted, result in higher taxes for the vast majority of small businesses—an event likely to have negative consequences for economic growth. As a result, several Democratic senators are suspected of favoring extending the Bush tax cuts for all taxpayers. One of them is Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) who pointed out that “in New Jersey, a two-income household comprising a police officer and a teacher earns more than $250,000 a year. Do we want to go on record penalizing these hard-working public servants?”

“Rather than give in to Republican efforts to confuse and obstruct we feel it would be best for voters to have a clear choice in front of them,” Reid explained. “If the President is reelected he will have a simple mandate to implement the taxes he deems most appropriate without any further Congressional meddling.”

Romney Speech to NAACP Panned

Officers of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) expressed their disappointment at the content of GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s recent speech to the organization’s annual meeting.

Clayola Brown, member of the NAACP’s National Board of Directors, found fault with “Romney’s assumption that Black people want jobs. The white man still owes us for 300 years of slavery. We don’t need to be told that Mr. Romney will push policies that get us jobs. The time for us to work is past. It’s time for us to get paid.”

Board member, Amos Brown, called Romney’s address “an insult to the NAACP.” Brown said he was “especially incensed that Romney emphasized the importance of the family for bringing up children. With so many Black mothers deserted by their children’s fathers he’s just rubbing salt in the wounds. At least President Obama is helping by eliminating the work requirement for receiving welfare benefits.”

Representative Emmanuel Cleaver (D-Missouri) judged Romney’s appearance at the event as “embarrassing and ignorant. Doesn’t he know that the president has sewn up the Black vote? Why does he insist on coming here to offer words we don’t want to hear?”

Cleaver said he has “no problem with President Obama’s decision to bypass the NAACP convention. We already know the President is Black. On top of that, I heard that he’s going to be paying our utility bills. So , there’s no need for him to waste his time talking to us. It’s better that he devote his energy to sweet talking some rich white dudes out of a big chunk of campaign cash.”

Governor Questions GOP’s Patriotism

Governor Dan Malloy (D-Conn) questioned the patriotism of the GOP saying that “the actions of these people  strike me as treasonous. I’ve been paying very close attention to what they’ve been doing over the past year or so and I think I see a sinister pattern emerging.”

According to Malloy, this sinister pattern “includes openly suggesting that he be replaced by a member of their Party, constantly criticizing his policies, and raising enormous sums of money aimed solely at persuading voters that they shouldn’t vote for him.”

The governor further said that “if the president survives this frontal assault on his right to rule I hope he will not shy from meting out justice to these troublemakers. As I understand it, the Constitution and laws of this country authorize the president to use lethal force against traitors. He shouldn’t hesitate to use these powers.”

A Satirical Look at Recent News

John Semmens Archives

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Flake’s Former Boss at Goldwater Institute Supports Cardon!

Tracy Thomas, Former Goldwater Institute chairman, delivered a huge blow to U.S. Senate candidate Jeff Flake in an email today. He endorsed the conservative candidate Wil Cardon. Why is this so damaging to Flake?

Because Flake is the former executive director of the Goldwater Institute, and Thomas is willing to admit the truth that Flake hasn’t measured up in his 12 years in the House of Representatives.

In his email, Thomas writes:

“During my time as chairman of the Goldwater Institute, Congressman Jeff Flake worked for me as our executive director.

“Jeff is a good man, but I cannot vote for him.

“It’s not often that a U.S. Senate seat is open in Arizona. It’s imperative that we get this right. This is why I am endorsing Wil Cardon.”

3 Reasons to Support Wil Cardon

1) Proven Job Creator

“Wil Cardon reminds me of Senator Jon Kyl and his background before becoming a great representative of Arizona. Both Senator Kyl and Wil understand business and have experience in the private sector,” Thomas said.

2) Washington Outsider

“As a Mesa businessman, Wil successfully built a company from the ground up. His background as an entrepreneur will make him an effective voice against business as usual in Congress.”

3) Amnesty Opponent

“Arizona’s immigration problem threatens our security and our economic prosperity. Wil has demonstrated his focus will be to pass Arizona-centric legislation. Wil is a leader with integrity who will always put Arizona first.

“Congressman Flake’s main focus during his six terms in Congress has been on opening trade and tourism with Cuba and ending earmarks, both of which have been unsuccessful. He hasn’t passed any mentionable Arizona-focused legislation, and he is a vehement opponent of securing our borders.

“Wil is a proven job creator, a Washington outsider, and he has the right business mindset to truly lead our country back to economic prosperity.”

Chicago Cubs Take Mesa for Yet Another Ride

Mesa city leaders and Chicago Cubs’ officials broke ground on yet another new spring training baseball stadium this week. The Cubs have promised to occupy the new facility for 30 years.

If ever a promise rang hollow, the Cubs have surely struck it. They’re getting their fourth stadium in 60 years. The Chicago Crybabies threw a tantrum and demanded a new stadium after using their current stadium for just 13 years.

If you think they’ll be satisfied with this new stadium for 30 years, you probably need to take a reality class.

And for the 64 percent of Mesa voters who went along with this corporate welfare … you done been had.

The Cubs took Mesa for yet another ride by threatening to move to Florida if they didn’t get yet another new stadium.  The city foolishly thought it would lose out on millions of dollars of revenue generated in its business places by baseball fans attending Cubs’ Cactus League games.

Duh! Baseball teams inFlorida are playing the same game, threatening to move to Arizona if they don’t get new baseball stadiums every few years.

If the city fathers in Arizona and Florida were smart, they’d let these teams walk … to each other’s states and stadiums.

ASU Study Sympathetic to al Qaeda Terrorists

Researchers with ASU’s Center for Strategic Communication (CSC) analyzed more than 2,000 items of propaganda from al Qaeda and related Islamist groups from 1998 to 2011. They catalogued more than 1,500 quotes from the Qur’an that extremists used to support their arguments, and identified the chapter (surah) and verse represented in the quote.

The ASU Insight publication story says: “Results showed that most of quotes are about enduring hardships and maintaining faith and hope in the face of attacks by enemies of Islam. The so-called ‘Verse of the Sword’ (9:5) that says “fight and slay the pagans wherever you find them” was used only three times.”

The study concludes with four recommendations for the West: 1) abandon claims that Islamist extremists seek world domination; 2) focus on addressing claims of victimization; 3) emphasize alternative means of deliverance; and 4) reveal that the image of “champion” sought by extremists is a false one.

And now the real story: Islamic extremists are the reigning world champions of terrorism, leaving the safety of their self-defense nests to destroy the World Trade Center towers—on their second attempt, attack the Pentagon, and attack and kill innocent civilians in numerous countries around the globe. All 19 terrorists on September 11, 2001 were radical, al Qaeda Muslims. So let’s not focus on their claims of victimization, but remain vigilant of their ongoing attacks on domestic and international victims.

And we are not reassured that al Qaeda only mentioned the “Verse of the Sword” three times. Their terrorist attacks are many more than that.

Read the ASU story here.

Arizona Congressman Schweikert Introduces Bill to Repeal Obamacare

Congressman David Schweikert (R-AZ) introduced H.R. 6088 the Total Repeal of the Unfair Taxes on Healthcare ‘TRUTH’ Act of 2012on Monday. This bill repeals the twelve direct taxes included in ObamaCare, several of which have nothing to do with healthcare.

“Once again, it has fallen to Congress to repeal and restart on what will go down as the single greatest overreach by an Administration in the history of our country.

“I take seriously my duty to protect Arizonans from anything that aims to harm them, and the crown jewel of President Obama’s presidency certainly does that.

“When passed, the TRUTH Act will become one of the largest tax cuts in history, reducing taxes by a minimum of $500 billion over the next seven years.

“Arizona’s families, entrepreneurs, and small businesses cannot afford to have this income taxed away from them in a struggling economy; it is simply unsustainable. For this reason, I encourage all of my colleagues on both sides of the Capitol to join me in abolishing this dirty dozen.

THE ‘DIRTY DOZEN’: The TRUTH Act repeals the following:

Repeal of excise tax on comprehensive health plans. Repeal of surtax on investment income. Repeal of disqualification of expenses for over-the-counter drugs under health flexible spending   arrangements and health savings accounts. Repeal of increase in tax on nonqualified distributions from health savings accounts. Repeal of limitation on health flexible spending arrangements under cafeteria plans. Repeal of increased threshold for itemized deduction for medical expenses. Repeal of excise tax on indoor tanning services. Repeal of individual health insurance mandate. Repeal of employer health insurance mandate. Repeal of excise tax on medical devices. Repeal of annual fee on branded prescription drug manufacturers. Repeal of annual fee on health insurance providers. Repeal of study and report on repealed provisions.


Administration Shrugs Off Negative Jobs Report

By John Semmens: Semi-News — A Satirical Look at Recent News

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the official unemployment rate remained above 8% for the 41st straight month. The picture for Black unemployment was even more discouraging bumping up in June to over 14% for all ages and to over 39% for those aged 16-19.

The White House cautioned that voters should not place too much reliance on any one monthly report, but should look at the longer term trend. “A narrow focus on jobs misses the bigger picture,” Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers Alan Krueger said in a written statement. “Over the last three years more than 3 million workers have escaped the drudgery of wage slavery by joining the ranks of the compensated disabled. On top of this, another 4 million have simply dropped out of the workforce. These tremendous gains in the opportunity to enjoy more leisure time are not adequately accounted for in the official unemployment numbers.”

“Let’s not lose sight of the fact that work is a disutility,” Krueger wrote. “People only do it because they feel they have to. I think we need to give the President some credit for helping a growing number of Americans to overcome this feeling. He’s reduced some of the economic pressure by putting more people on food stamps than any other president. And his robust display of enjoyment of leisure activities like golf—where he has played more rounds than his four predecessors combined—has helped lower the social stigma of taking it easy.”

“The fact is, if the seven million who have left the workforce over the last three years were still under the delusion that they had to get jobs, the official unemployment rate would be over 11%,” Krueger observed. “So, by promoting leisure the President has actually lowered the official unemployment rate by 3% since 2009.”

Transportation Secretary Envies China Dictatorship

Miffed that the Administration’s dream of a nationwide high-speed rail passenger system may be derailed by uncooperative states, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said he wished the US were more like China. Thus far Florida, Ohio, and Wisconsin have opted out of participating in the President’s high-speed rail scheme.

“In China the government doesn’t have to put up with people thwarting their plans,” LaHood explained. “If the top guy says do something, everyone has to go along. They don’t have state legislatures or governors deciding they don’t want to pony up their share of the cost for the rail program. And they certainly don’t have to worry about voters rejecting the taxes or bonds that are needed to fund construction.”

LaHood held out the hope that November’s election might change things here in America. “Up to now, the President has had to go through the motions of asking for states to join in voluntarily in funding the program,” the Secretary pointed out. “After he is reelected, though, there’ll be no need for that. A single signature on an Executive Order mandating universal participation should suffice.”

A key factor in LaHood’s optimism was the Supreme Court’s recent ruling on the Affordable Care Act. “It is now a matter of settled law that those who refuse to participate in a government mandated program can be taxed,” he contended. “Faced with the prospect of being taxed and getting nothing in return I think states contemplating rebellion against the federal plan for high-speed rail will come into line.”

Identity Theft No Excuse for Not Paying Your Taxes

The problem of identity theft is growing. In 2011, the IRS reported that more than 600,000 taxpayers were affected. This is more than ten times as many as 2008—the last year under the Bush Administration. Nonetheless, the Obama IRS isn’t showing any mercy for people whose identities have been stolen

“Just because your identity has been stolen doesn’t excuse you from paying your taxes,” said Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. “You are still liable for taxes on the amount of income shown in our records.”

The amount shown in the IRS records for you may be a problem, though. Identity thieves using your Social Security number boosts the amount of income reported under that number, pushing you into a higher tax bracket. The IRS wants the taxes due on this higher income.

“It’s not the government’s fault that your identity was stolen,” Geithner insisted. “Why should the government be penalized for your mistake? By law, the government is entitled to a specified share of every dollar earned no matter what the source. We intend to get that share and will do whatever it takes to ensure that we do.”

Geithner argued that “holding the victims of identity theft responsible is fiscally prudent. Our first priority is to secure funds for the government’s use. Besides, if we let taxpayers off the hook for tax liabilities resulting from identity theft they might not be sufficiently motivated to correct the problem. So, in a way, we are helping to stimulate people to take better care of their personal data.”

Madrassas Should Be Model for America’s Schools

Representative Andre Carson (D-IN) suggests that public schools in America be reformed along lines to make them more like Islamic schools.

“In terms of effectiveness, the madrassas far exceed anything we’ve seen from the vast majority of this country’s public schools,” Carson argued. “The typical American public school student is an unmotivated drone with a sense of entitlement. Our graduates are too often indistinguishable from ignorant louts.”

“In contrast, the madrassa student is taught respect and obedience,” Carson asserted. “Its graduates are highly motivated to fight for change. Many are even willing to give their lives in this fight.”

As a final argument, Carson reminded everyone that “president Obama is a product of a madrassa education. His towering strength and undiluted commitment to fight for the transformation of this country is as strong an endorsement for the reform I am proposing as anyone could want.”

France Announces Bold Plan to Wreck Economy

Saying he was concerned that Spain and Greece “might sop up all the gravy,” newly elected President Francois Hollande embarked upon a series of measures that he promised “will put this country at the head of the line for the next round of bailouts.” The measures include higher taxes on everyone who has money over-and-above what they need, an immediate boost in the minimum wage, and a ban on laying off redundant workers.

“Why should we Frenchmen struggle to improve our economic output under current conditions?” Hollande asked. “If we do, we’ll be expected to help rescue those who don’t. We would earn the obligation to work for the gains of someone else. It is better that someone else bear the burden of working for our gain.”

Hollande boasted that the measures he is enacting “sound good to the average voter. Everyone imagines that only others will be targeted for tax increases, that decreeing higher wages is an unmitigated benefit, and that forbidding lay-offs guarantees job security. Few will comprehend that these measures ensure our decline. Nearly all can be relied upon to demand relief when the disaster hits. None will blame me. It’s an ingenious plan.”

The French President discounted the possibility that his machinations could fail. “Look, the cost of liberating France from Nazi domination was far higher,” Hollande maintained. “And others bore the vast majority of that cost. In comparison, the price for saving us from our financial improvidence will seem very reasonable.”

Requiring Congress to Read Bills Before Passing Them Proposed

Senator Rand Paul (R-Ken) has proposed that members of Congress be given a reasonable amount of time to read bills before they are asked to vote on passing them. This proposal was denounced by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev) as “an unnecessary impediment to action.”

“I find it appalling that Republicans in this body are repeatedly trying to throw up roadblocks to progress,” Reid complained. “The notion that senators must read bills before they vote to make them into laws is fallacious. We have a staff that reads these bills for us. There is no need for us to slog through the lengthy and convoluted language of some of these behemoths.”

“As for the contention that passing laws without reading them is a mistake, I refer my colleague from Kentucky to the Supreme Court’s recent upholding of the Affordable Care Act,” Reid continued. “None of us had time to read more than a tiny fraction of this 2700-page monster before we passed it two years ago. Yet, last week the Court has confirmed that we did a fine job.”

Reid suggested that Paul’s proposal “might be moot after November. We’ve got a President who is learning not to be afraid of fully exercising his power to go over the heads of Congress if the situation requires it. He certainly can’t be expected to hold back until Senator Paul has had a chance to read his Executive Orders before he issues them. At best, Senator Paul’s proposal is premature. I can see no reason why we should vote on it.”

Study Says Reverence for Liberty Sign of Terrorism

A University of Maryland study funded by the Department of Homeland Security found that “persons reverent about individual liberty are likely to be right-wing terrorists.” “It makes perfect sense when you think about it,” said Secretary Janet Napolitano. “The phrase ‘individual liberty’ doesn’t appear in any of our nation’s founding documents. Its advocates are clearly and suspiciously out of step with America’s basic values.”

A Satirical Look at Recent News

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