Some of you may remember an approaching election day six years ago. Most Americans were in some state of trauma from an economic meltdown that only an elite group of global players had anything to do with. But on the whole we were a hurting country. We were in no mood to re-elect the party that had put us in this hole through bad policy and neglect of enforcing good policy. Stated simply, the Republican party and its president had taken the country and the world to the very precipice of a financial collapse potentially worse than any in recorded history.
All eyes turned to the young senator from Illinois to turn the economy around, to lead us away from the precipice, to restore America and the whole world to economic health. At that point it would have been foolish to put the candidate from the party that had plunged the country and the world to a near abyss. As soon as the election was over, Obama became the defacto president, since the administration in power at the time had no credibility in dealing with the crisis. America and the world looked to Obama for leadership in dealing with the financial crisis.
But a funny thing happened on the night of Obama’s official inauguration – Republican leaders and lawmakers met at the Caucus Room Restaurant in Washington DC to set their strategy to oppose anything and everything that Obama would do. Thus did the Republicans work to undermine any progress for the country and the world. They were betting that as they stopped sensible approaches to solving some of the most serious problems in a century, the blame would go to the young President. They needed the help of the media to pull it off. The corporate media – 92% corporate owned and led by Fox did all they possibly could to shift the blame from the Republican obstructionists to the President.
Despite all this, President Obama’ administration has quite a few accomplishments over the past six years. Enough accomplishments that Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman rates Obama among the great presidents for his ability to deal with the problems even with the Republicans intransigent and some say insane opposition. Hiring now continues at a pace not seen since the Clinton year; the stock market has recovered to new highs after plunging to the middle 6,000s at the depth of the crisis; we are withdrawing from foreign entanglements and show little desire to waste more lives and treasury again; rights have been extended to more citizens than ever; the deficit has been more than halved and continues downward; health care policy is more sane and covering more Americans than ever. The list could go on. This in spite of an opposition that is bent on destroying this presidency.
Considering what President Obama has accomplished for the American people with little help from congress, just imagine what could be accomplished if only he had a congress that would work with his administration even a little bit. Imagine if legislation were sent to congress and the immediate reaction was not immediate tabling by the Speaker of the House or immediate filibuster by the Minority Leader in the senate. Can you imagine what it would be like for Congress to actually propose legislation that worked FOR the majority of Americans, not just special interests? Can you imagine a Congress debating policy with the intent of making solid legislation that will work? Can you imagine Congress even passing a budget? It will not happen as long as those intent on literally ruining the Obama Presidency are given any power.
The election is Tuesday. Many of you have cast your ballots already. For those of who haven’t, take a few moments to think what it would be like to actually have a Congress that took their jobs seriously. Republicans abandoned that years ago. Their dreams of removing government as an effective entity are now being played out in Kansas on a major scale and it is a disaster. In many other states, including Iowa, there are partial tests on neutering government and these experiments are having very bad consequences. Infrastructure is failing daily in this country and it will only get worse.
So send good candidates to Congress who are willing to work FOR America, not against the American people.
In Iowa we have great candidates for congress:
– Dave Loebsack has shown great skill in working for the people in his district. His opponent is a doctor hell bent on taking health care away from the constituents of the 2nd district.
– In the first district Pat Murphy has a stellar record of standing up for all citizens in the Iowa legislature. His opponent is another cookie cutter tea bagger whose goal is to stop government from doing anything.
– In the 3rd district Staci Appel also brings a stellar record to the race. Her opposition was part of the Grassley team that did all he could to keep health care from Americans.
– In the fourth, the poster child (and I do mean child) of the crazy right is facing off against young veteran Jim Mowrer. Mowrer is a young man of vision and empathy who knows the value and need for a functioning government.
Finally, what can we say about the senate race? Bruce Braley has a long and proud record of working for people and helping Obama accomplish what he could. His opponent is merely a stand in for the Koch brothers. Her votes will be based on what the Koch brothers tell her. I think one of the reasons she refused the interviews by the three major papers in Iowa was because she couldn’t wear a wire connected to the Koch offices so they could tell her the answers to the questions she was asked.
By the way! VOTE!