Biblical and Constitutional Politics

First Week of Spring Politics

Hearings, Speeches, Press Conferences, Votes, and Terrorism

By Gary F. Zeolla

 

      After an Eventual Three Weeks in Politics starting with the beginning of March, 2017, the first week of Spring proved to be the most eventual of all.

 

First Hearing

 

      The first day of Spring, Monday March 20, 2017, was a huge day in politics. There were two concurrent hearings occurring.

      The first hearing was of Supreme Court Nominee Neil Gorsuch. As is often the case with such hearings, I didn’t need the subtitles on the news stations to tell me if a Republican or Democratic Senator was doing the questioning, as it was obvious from their tone. The Republicans were talking to Neil like he was an old friend, first asking him about him his family, his wife and two daughters, sports, rodeos, and the like, before getting to serious matters.

      The most important issue they asked him about was his “originalist” view of the Constitution. Neil explained that this is how people interpret any document and is how people want the Constitution interpreted when they are bringing a case to court. We all instinctively know that to understand the original author’s intention is just how documents are to be interpreted. The Republicans then asked him to explain specific decisions, which he did so in a thoughtful and thorough manner.

      Through all of their questioning, it was obvious that Neil is an intelligent, likeable person, who knows what he talking about when it comes to the law. His decisions never reflect his personal beliefs but are an honest attempt to interpreted the laws as written by the legislature.

      But the Democrats’ tone was completely different. They were not out to find anything out about Neil but to crucify him. Their intention was clear: to prove Neil was a bigot, homophobe, transphobe, and just all around horrible person, no matter what the facts were. To that end, they spent most of their time pontificating, hardly ever giving Neil a chance to even respond to their questions.

      Former SNL comedian Al Franken was the worse. He went on and on about a case about a trucker, making it sound like Neil’s decision in the case was “obviously” uncaring and ridiculous. But he never let Neil respond. When Neil tried to, Al would interrupt him and say, “We don’t have time for that,” then go on pontificating for several minutes himself.

      The Dems also went on and on about President Obama’s nominee not getting a vote, as if Neil had anything to do with that. They also kept asking Neil to give his opinion on transsexualism, which Neil rightly refused to do. As he tried to explain, when they would give him a chance to talk, his personal opinions on such matters do not matter, as he will rule based on the law and the case at hand, not based on his personal feelings.

      Of course, the Dems cannot understand that mentality, as the liberal justices they like have no such integrity. They often make rulings based on their personal opinions and not the law. That can be seen in the Hawaii and Maryland judges who put a halt to President Trump’s travel ban. The applicable laws are clear that the President has the authority to issue such a travel ban, but they let their dislike for Trump dictate their rulings, not the law.

      In any case, the hearing was truly a disgusting display of partisanship. The Dems obviously have no intentions of voting for Neil, no matter who he is, how qualified he is, and what his judicial philosophy is, for the simple reason that he was appointed by a Republican.

      Given that partisan attitude by the Dems, the Republicans will probably have no choice but to use the so-called “nuclear option” and change the Senate rules so that a Supreme Court nominee can be confirmed with a simple majority vote, as the Dems will vote “no” no matter who Trump nominates, unless he lets them pick the nominee, which will not happen.

      What makes this especially disgusting is Republicans have never treated Democratic nominees in such manner. They simply voted based on if the nominee was qualified or not, regardless of their judicial philosophy and who nominated them, hence how we got such liberal Supreme Court justices as Ginsberg.

 

Second Hearing

 

      The second hearing on the first day of Spring was with FBI Director James Comey and NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers. There were two main issues at hand. The first was supposed Russian interference with the presidential election. But both made it clear that there is zero evidence the Russians hacked voting machines and that there is zero evidence that the Russians changed a single vote result. The Russian did, however, try to hack voter registrations, but were unable to do so. What that means is, the media’s claim that “The Russians hacked the election” are simply untrue.

      But that was not the headline. The headline was that Comey and Rogers both said it was being investigated if there was any collusion between the Russians and the Trump campaign. The media kept repeating this afterwards as if it meant anything.

      An investigation is not proof of anything. All it means is there has been allegations, and when such allegations are made, they must be investigated, no matter how baseless they are. And in this case, not a scape of evidence has surfaced that there was any such collusion.

      The second issue was President Trump’s claim that Obama had him “wiretapped.” I already explained that by wiretapped, Trump meant any form of surveillance. And both Comey and Rogers said they had found no evidence to support the President’s claims.

      Between this supposed revelation and the one about an investigation into a Russian/ Trump connection, the media was having a field day proclaiming., “It was a bad day for Trump.” Even Shepherd Smith of Fox News jumped on this bandwagon. But then, it is obvious at this point that Shepherd is stanchly in the anti-Trump camp. In fact, he has gone so far left he should leave Fox News and join MSNBC.

 

Trump’s Speech

 

      Despite it being such a “bad day” for President Trump, he went on with his rally in Kentucky that night. And as always, he was upbeat and inspirational and apparently unfazed by the day’s events. He was confident that Neil Gorsuch would be confirmed and that he would be vindicated on both of the issues at hand in the security hearing. And as always, he had the crowd riled up in support of his polices.

 

Press Conferences

 

      The media’s glee over Trump supposedly having been proven a liar in regards to him being “wiretapped” was short-lived. The next day, Senate Intel head Devin Nunes (R. GA) held a press conference in which he presented evidence that Trump was correct. There had been surveillance of Trump’s transition team in December, January, and February.

      Specifically, he had seen transcripts of surveillance of foreign dignitaries. It is normal practice of US security agencies to surveil foreign dignitaries and is perfectly legal. However, if an American gets into the discussion, then it is required by law that surveillance of the American be “minimized.” By this is meant, his or her comments should not be recorded, they most definitely should not be transcribed, and most of all, their identities should not be revealed, which is called “unmasking” a person under surveillance. But all there of these regulations were broken in the case of Trump associates in the transition team.

      We already knew this from what happened to General Flynn. In fact, that was another issue at hand in the Comey/ Rogers hearings. They were asked by Republican Senator Trey Gowdy if the illegal releasing of Flynn’s name to the press was being investigated. But Comey said he could not talk about FBI investigations, never mind that he had already done so in regards to a Trump campaign/ Russian investigation. It was truly a contradictory and nonsensical position.

      In any case, Devin said he was not sure who was responsible for this surveillance, but it very well could have been Obama high officials, if not Obama himself. But that needed to be investigated. However, it is clear that Trump had reasons for his claim of his transition team being surveilled.

      The media is trying to spin these revelations as not supporting Trump’s allegations. They are mostly trying to deflect their effect by complaining about how Devin went about making these revelations. “He should have reported to Congress first, not the media.” “He should have consulted with his Democratic counterpart Adam Schiff.”

      But as Sean Spicer strongly pointed out at his daily briefing, this is common media practice. When they don’t like what has been revealed, they focus on how it was revealed and ignore the content of the revelation. It is truly a disingenuous practice, but the low that the media has reached.

      The fact remains, Trump was not lying but had reasons for his claims, no matter how much the media might try to ignore that fact. The only issue now is if anyone will be prosecuted for their illegally releasing this information and unmasking Trump associates, starting with whoever unmasked General Flynn.

 

AHCA Vote

 

      The House vote on the American Health Care Act (AHCA) was supposed to occur on Thursday afternoon. Then it was delayed to Thursday night, then to Friday afternoon, then indefinitely. The reason it was delayed was that House Speaker Paul Ryan clearly did not have the votes for it to pass. This whole situation has truly been a debacle for the Republicans in Congress.

      As I’ve said before, it is inexcusable that after eight years of campaigning on “repealing and preplacing Obamacare” that they did not have a replacement plan in place. There is still much disagreement within the Republican ranks as to what the bill should contain. It mostly centers on how much government involvement there should be in health care, as opposed to letting the free market handle it. The establishment Republicans clearly want much of the former, while the conservative Republicans (the Freedom Caucasus) want the latter. It is a clash of philosophies.

      The problem is, Obamacare worked in its intended purpose, which was to condition the American public into thinking the government should be in charge of health care and that there should be universal health care, with all possible health issues fully covered. Obamacare was doomed to fail. But that was as planned, as its purpose was to set up the American public to not only be open but to demand a single-payer system.

      For those who don’t know, “single-payer” refers to government run health care, with no private involvement. It is a cradle to grave system of the government providing all health care. Never mind that it is an inefficient, blotted system that is failing everywhere it is being tried, with exploding costs, long wait times for care, and inadequate care when people do get treated. But it still the “holy grail” for liberals. And the liberals just assumed Hillary would win and bring their dream to fruition. The plan was for the federal government to ride in like a white knight and “save” Obamacare when it inevitably imploded.

      But even though Hillary did not win, many American fell for this subterfuge and now expect the government to take care of them. Thus the media is focused on how many people will not get coverage under a free market plan and what types of care will not be mandated. Behind his mindset is that everyone should be covered, that all possible health situations should be covered, and everyone should pay the same. But this reflects the leftist attuited that the way to solve inequities is for everyone to suffer the same.

      For example, as a 50-something teetotaling male who never takes drugs, I do not need maternity care, and I do not need alcohol/ drug addiction rehab to be included in my health care plan. But according to the liberal mindset, it should still be mandated that I get coverage for such things. If I don’t, then that means I would be paying less than alcohol drinking, drug using women, and that is not fair. Unless the conservative Republicans can change this mindset, then a free market system will never be accepted. And that is where we are at today. As such, I am glad the AHCA went down in flames, as it would have just been a continuation of the liberal mindset. We need to wait until this mindset is changed for a true fee market solution to be accepted.

      Another point is worth noting. Throughout this whole debate, there was never any attempt to bring any Democrats on board in support of the AHCA. There wasn’t as everyone knew that there would not be a single Democrat vote for a Republican heath care plan. As Trump correctly pointed out, even if Republicans came out with the greatest health care plan possible, Democrats would never vote for it simply because it was a Republican bill.

      Again, such partisanship is truly revolting, but it is the reality today. Politics, not what is best for the American people, is the main concern of politicians in Washington, and this goes for both Republicans and Democrats.

 

Terrorism

 

      On Thursday, we had yet one more reminder of the danger of violent and totalitarian Islam with the terror attack in London. Before the name of the perpetrator was released, many of us knew it would turn out to be a Muslim responsible, including this writer. It is getting bewildering how so many Americans and Europeans continue to turn a blind eye to the dangers of violent and totalitarian Islam. I don’t know how many more such attacks have to occur until the liberals finally get it, but until they do, such attacks will remain commonplace.

      It is so bad that the mayor of London has said that this is the “new normal” that those who live in big cities just have to accept. That is true, if we accept the liberal attitude of not being able to focus on those responsible, which is to say Muslim extremists. As long as political correctness rules the day and prevents this focus, then yes, such attacks will continue. This mindset is seen in the halt on Trump’s travel ban. All efforts to put the focus where it needs to be are derailed by liberals.

      But such a situation is not normal, and we do not need to accept it, if we would just wise up. In this case, it was not an immigrant, but many others have been. But as for this case, it needs to be asked how a British citizen got radicalized. That, along with the fact that eight other people were arrested for involvement in the attack, proves this was not a “lone wolf” attack as the media is still trying make it out to be. It is part of the overall plan of radical Islam to dominate the world. Until we recognize that is the goal, we will not be able to stop it.

      This attack also belies the claim of liberals after previous attacks committed with guns that guns are the problem. As conservatives have tried to point out, guns are not the problem, people are, as you do not need a gun to kill and maim people. A car and a crowed sidewalk is all it takes. As such, gun control will not stop the attacks.

      The problem is, people are looking for meaning in life. This is especially the case for people have been hurt by the disastrous economic and social policies of liberals. Absentee fathers and the resulting poverty is what sets up many to be recruited by Islamic radicals or to commit acts of violence in general. We are seeing this in the inner cities across the USA and Europe.

      What is needed is to change people’s hearts, and the only thing that can do that is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. But liberals will not even let His name be mentioned in public. And that has opened the door to radial Islam invading the west and growing social unrest. But as Christians, we need to be bold in declaring that Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, and that it is only through Him that people can have life and have it abundantly.

 

Conclusion

 

      The situation is Washington is truly disheartening. The bickering and partisanship will keep anything positive from getting done. But even worse is the mindset of Americans that opens the door to this situation. Liberalism has wreaked havoc on our country. Individual responsibility and cooperation has been replaced by dependence on government and an inability for people to work together to solve problems. At the root of this is a loss of the Christian worldview. Thus all we have left is bickering and attacks on one another, with each person trying to prove they’re right and the other guy is wrong. It is truly a sad situation that only the Gospel of Jesus Christ with its emphasis on personal responsibility will mend.

First Week of Spring Politics. Copyright 2017 by Gary F. Zeolla.

The above article was posted on this website March 25, 2017.

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