Don’t kid yourself America: we don’t have the rise of an imperial presidency, we have an imperial president.
On June 6, I will join veterans of D-Day in Normandy to mark the 70th anniversary of the pivotal World War II invasion. These brave American, British and Canadian soldiers parachuted behind enemy lines, stormed the beaches, ran to the fire and triumphed on June 6, 1944, and in the ensuing battles that were won in the following weeks. The cost in human lives was high, the task unimaginable by men who should have been going to drive-in theaters, their first job or to a classroom. The longest day lives on as a significant marker of freedom’s fight in human history. We must honor the past and secure the future.
Will the Republicans and all rational elected officials and political power brokers stand up to President Obama or cower behind media statements, political advertisements and meager partisan pronouncements? The Republican-led House of Representatives has a constitutional responsibility with respect to the separation of powers and our system of checks and balances.
In making the deal to release five of the worst Taliban terrorists for U.S. Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, Obama violated the law he signed requiring notification of at least 30 days to Congress before releasing prisoners from Guantánamo Bay. He did so according to his own signing statement, which challenged the law passed by constitutional process. If Obama doesn’t like a law, he acts as he sees fit, by executive order or by employing the weight of the federal bureaucracy, such the Environmental Protection Agency on climate change and carbon emissions or the Department of Justice with its “Operation Choke Point” against gun manufacturers.
Obama and the progressives have very little to lose and everything to gain. We on the right need to object to the president’s policies, to spend more of our time constructively and dispassionately analyzing his and the progressive cause’s points of view. Too often I hear conservative commentators refer to the president’s legacy based on what historically has been the concern of most presidents. Traditionally, regardless of party, that legacy has been how each president is historically perceived within the cultural and political framework of our country. But Obama is a different man and president.
He is different, as is clear if you examine his past and the choices he has made, as well as the associations that he has used to his benefit and in many ways retained today. Start with his relationship with the alleged communist Frank Marshall Davis in his formative years, his professors, including Derrick Bell, and his association with Valerie Jarrett during his collegiate years and with unrepentant terrorists Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn. These and more are the radicals in his early political years and the acolytes he surrounds himself with now who push message and agenda, truth be damned. The false Benghazi narrative about a YouTube video is a stark example of this.
Obama is different in that he sees a different America, and his true legacy is more about the advancement of a fundamental transformation, as he has stated. The credit I begrudgingly give to Obama is that he has been honest about his goals. He is not culturally an American from the left or right or somewhere in-between. He is outside the norm and dedicated to the progressive cause and to their vision of America.
Obama now enters a phase in which he will do everything he can from the president’s desk before he loses more seats in the House and possibly the Senate. This is an active imperial president, the likes of which we have never seen in the United States.
So what are we to do? In this primary season and in the coming general election we have a choice, and not a Faustian bargain as even some on the right side of the aisle try to project. I’m speaking of reality. America must solidify the House of Representatives with more Republican members and give the Senate to the Republicans to have a chance at stopping Obama. The same applies at the state level — where necessary, look for the conservative Democrats who once existed as Kennedy Democrats.
Though it is possible for the Republicans to disappoint once they are given the House and Senate, that is a different battle for a different time. The choices will be difficult at times, but we must unite to win the future of America beyond Nov. 4, 2014.
Webb is host of “The David Webb Show” on SiriusXM Patriot 125, a Fox News contributor and has appeared frequently on television as a commentator. Webb co-founded TeaParty365 in New York City, and is a spokesman for the National Tea Party Federation. His column will appear twice a month in The Hill.