Monday, October 29, 2012

Not Just About the President

You might think, by watching the "news" that the only important election coming up is that of Obama v. Romney.  And I have to admit, our President could be doing a better job reminding us why those Senate and House races are so important.  Like whenever he is accused of not having done enough in the past four years.

This election season, puppeteers like Karl Rove and the Kochs are busy funneling money into races to defeat those Democrats that have stood the strongest for our democratic values.

But why not?  It's been working for years.

In 2004, Senator Tom Daschle, who was accused by Dick Cheney of being the "chief obstructionist" of the Bush agenda, was up in the polls by 5-7%.  It was reported to be the most expensive Senate race in 2004, and we watched in shock as he was defeated.

This year, Rove's piggybank, Crossroads GPS, has targeted critically important people like Elizabeth Warren, who if elected would surely effect positive change in our financial lives.  Rove, who has gotten away with so many criminal acts, like his part in outing CIA undercover operative Valerie Plame, does not even pretend to fund only "issues ads", which is a requirement of anonymously funded superpacs.

Outspoken and ethical Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio has been targeted by right wing groups which have spent over 17 million to be rid of him.  The radical and powerful Club for Growth is at the top of opponent Josh Mandel's contributors' list, with Senate Conservatives Fund right behind.

We should be hearing more about these Senate races, because they are so important.  Same is true of the House.

Because when it comes down to why the Obama agenda has struggled to succeed, we only need look to Congress.  The Mitch McConnells and John Boehners have twisted and perverted the function of this institution, not just since Obama came to the White House, but since the Democrats won control in 2006.

The proof is in Mitch McConnell's proud goal in the Senate:

where filibusters made it necessary to have 60 votes rather than a mere majority for any bill that reflected the Democratic agenda.

And let's not forget the oft-teary-eyed John Boehner, and his shout-out over the voices of the Democrats in the House over  Obama's health care bill:

Yes, I'm talking about the "jobs, jobs, jobs" John Boehner who began introducing anti-abortion bills to the House on his first day, and only stops to play a few rounds of golf with his moneyed constituents.

If we don't change the composition in our Congress this year, a re-elected Obama will face another four years of frustrated goals.  On the other hand, Romney is getting his rubber stamp warmed up just in case he wins, because, per the king of the tax cut and the Republican Party Grover Norquist, all they will need come November is a president that will sign any bill a Republican Congress will send.

Cut taxes for the rich and cut social services and safety nets for the rest of us.  Gut Medicare, ban birth control, increase spending on defense, and watch the debt rise like we haven't seen since the days of "W".  And send in the Scalia clone to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg, because what that Republican Congress wants, is what Romney will give us.

So let's not forget how important all those other people that are running for office on November 6 really are.  Because this is what it really comes down to:

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