Patterico's Pontifications

11/17/2022

What is The Agenda Of House Republicans?

Filed under: General — Dana @ 11:10 am



[guest post by Dana]

Now that the Republicans have (barely) won the House, what’s on their agenda? To a great degree, it will depend on whether the group of far-right MAGA members and more traditional Republicans can coalesce around a cause:

The main question going forward is whether Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, who was nominated Tuesday to lead the new Republican majority, can achieve the unity necessary to perform fundamental tasks such as funding the government, or whether unyielding far-right members will make the new speaker’s life miserable and the House an unmanageable mess.

In a reflection of the GOP at large, the House remains somewhat divided between the more traditional Republicans and the MAGA Republican members, whose loyal base expects them to fulfill their promises to launch any number of investigations into the Biden administration. In the run-up to the midterms, we repeatedly heard about these possible investigations. Even before the election and even though they were in the minority, House Republicans had introduced “14 impeachment resolutions, more than three times the number Democrats did in the first two years of Donald Trump’s presidency.” And while Kevin McCarthy claims he doesn’t want to use “impeachment as a political weapon,” he is open to the process “if anyone ever rises to that occasion.” Here is a list of the longheld grievances that Republicans have said they want to pursue:

1.

Rep. James Comer, R-Ky…said the Oversight Committee likely would subpoena Hunter Biden and demand the Treasury Department turn over any suspicious bank records linked to the president’s son. Comer unsuccessfully sought the documents previously but believes the Treasury Department won’t be able to reject his request now that Republicans are in the majority.

Comer told CBS News last week he believes Hunter Biden’s overseas business affairs may have “compromised this White House” and “therefore, it’s a national security concern.”

Meanwhile, Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, who is poised to become the chair of the House Judiciary Committee, has suggested the panel will investigate alleged political interference by the FBI and Justice Department in the Hunter Biden probe.

2.

In an August op-ed for FoxNews.com, McCarthy, Rep. Michael McCaul and other Republicans said the United States’ chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan one year earlier warrants greater scrutiny in a GOP-led House.

The op-ed coincided with an report issued by House Republicans on the Foreign Affairs Committee, which McCaul is likely to chair starting next year. The report accused the Biden administration of making decisions based on politics and lacking a solid exit strategy.

In August 2021, 13 service members were killed by a suicide bomber outside the Kabul airport, as they worked to evacuate Americans and Afghans from the country, which the Taliban had reclaimed.

“These strategic failures are too grave to ignore,” the Republicans wrote in the op-ed. “That is why House Republicans are committed to pursuing answers to Biden’s disastrous Afghanistan withdrawal.

3.

McCarthy told Fox News last month that if Republicans took control of the House they would set up a committee to investigate how COVID-19 spread from China.

House Republicans will likely grill Dr. Anthony Fauci, a top medical adviser to both Biden and Trump during the pandemic, and they could also dig into federal guidance on masking, vaccine mandates and school closures.

Senate Republicans last month released a report that said “it appears reasonable to conclude” that COVID-19 escaped from a lab.

4.

Within hours of FBI agents searching Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in search of government documents in August, McCarthy released a statement directed at Garland threatening to investigate the Justice Department.

“The Department of Justice has reached an intolerable state of weaponized politicization,” McCarthy said then.

“Attorney General Garland, preserve your documents and clear you calendar,” the Republican House leader added.

5.

Republicans’ have spent the past two years railing about the soaring number of encounters between law enforcement and migrants at the southern border.

In addition to blaming Biden for what they see as lax border policies, they also have repeatedly ripped Mayorkas, the Homeland Security secretary, whom they argue has been derelict in his duties…

The Republicans’ inquiry into border issues is likely to include deaths of migrants at the border; the smuggling of illegal drugs, including fentanyl, into the U.S.; and the discontinuation of the Trump-era “Remain in Mexico” policy for asylum seekers.”

Interestingly, the far-right faction of the House has already been successful in securing a promise for an investigation into one of their pet causes:

In a closed-door meeting of Republicans on Monday, right-wing lawmakers including Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia extracted a promise that their leaders would investigate Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Justice Department for their treatment of defendants jailed in connection with the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol.

The promise to investigate Pelosi and the DOJ coupled with this excerpt of a letter from Rep. Steve Scalise (No. 2 House Republican) to his colleagues, lends credence to the observation that “the House agenda is investigative, not legislative”:

We must be relentless in our oversight of this administration. From the politicization of the Justice Department to the job-crushing regulations coming from every agency, we need to shine a bright light on the actions and policy failures of this administration.

It looks like McCarthy is in for a tough time if he hopes to focus on anything other than inflicting pain on the current administration.

–Dana

95 Responses to “What is The Agenda Of House Republicans?”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (1225fc)

  2. McCarthy’s Commitment to America is anorexic thin so, for the time being, I’ll assume the GOP agenda is whatever impulse strikes Trump on any given day, or hour.

    Paul Montagu (b351b8)

  3. Many in the Republican base will love all of these investigations, but it will turn off moderate Republicans and independents who may have voted for them.

    Proceed carefully, ladies and gentlemen.

    norcal (a1f318)

  4. What is The Agenda Of House Republicans?

    Run the country like a television network; appeal to the audience by selling the soap they want to buy: try new shows, crater others. Start with this:

    Cancel ‘The Joe Show’— and any spinoffs.

    DCSCA (2849e4)

  5. Cocaine mitch mcconnell votes against interracial marriage even though his wife is asian! This slime ball will do anything to stay in power so not to offend the racists in his party!

    asset (38e4f4)

  6. That the public would like to see inflation ease, education improve, and illegal drugs reduced, is news that does not seem to have reached Comer and Jordan.

    And may never reach them.

    Jim Miller (85fd03)

  7. what’s on their agenda? T

    Message bills (that can’t possibly pass the Senate and maybe not even the House), oversight (investigations) which can be done by any committee on its own, without affecting other business (and if they threaten impeachment, their subpoenas have greater power) and things that they think will help themwin the next election raise campaign money.

    And appropriations bills, which have to pass, or at least continuing resolutions do, with “poison pill” amendment fights.

    A few committees might hold hearings to try to write bills which might pass in different times.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  8. If Hunter Biden is guilty of influence peddling or another crime, and the Biden administration obstructed a probe, then impeachment is a possible result. Depending on details, it could also warrant lesser action, such as censure, or indictment for lesser officials.

    I confess to being intentionally ignorant of the accusations involving Hunter Biden as there was no way to ascertain what was fact and what was propaganda. An awful lot of smoke for no fire, though.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  9. Republicans’ have spent the past two years railing about the soaring number of encounters between law enforcement and migrants at the southern border.

    In addition to blaming Biden for what they see as lax border policies, they also have repeatedly ripped Mayorkas, the Homeland Security secretary, whom they argue has been derelict in his duties…

    From now on,they can blame a federal judge (or Democrats for not changing the law — and discarding treaties by the way)

    https://nypost.com/cover/november-17-2022

    What Trump did was no more legal than Biden’s eviction moratorium or student loan forgiveness.

    Another judge had said Biden could not discontinue Title 42

    They mix this up with smuggling fentanyl and never mention the enormous number of legal border crossings — impossible to inspect.

    .”

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  10. McCarthy told Fox News last month that if Republicans took control of the House they would set up a committee to investigate how COVID-19 spread from China.

    If the spread was intentional (mostly to spread the economic harm around) then I sure would think it’s worth investigating. I’m not sure Congress is the proper venue though. Nor am I sure that politics would not shade the result.

    One thing to look at would be any Chinese limits on foreign travel circa January 2020. Particularly travel to the giant pan-Pacific CES trade show in Las Vegas, early January 2020.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  11. I’m hearing reports that the Mar-a-Lago raid produced nothing of critical interest, and that most, if not all, documents seized were of personal interest to former President Trump.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/11/14/trump-motive-mar-a-lago-documents

    Federal agents and prosecutors have come to believe former president Donald Trump’s motive for allegedly taking and keeping classified documents was largely his ego and a desire to hold on to the materials as trophies or mementos, according to people familiar with the matter.

    As part of the investigation, federal authorities reviewed the classified documents that were recovered from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home and private club, looking to see if the types of information contained in them pointed to any kind of pattern or similarities, according to these people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation.

    That review has not found any apparent business advantage to the types of classified information in Trump’s possession, these people said. FBI interviews with witnesses so far, they said, also do not point to any nefarious effort by Trump to leverage, sell or use the government secrets. Instead, the former president seemed motivated by a more basic desire not to give up what he believed was his property, these people said.

    If so, one wonders if the raid had political motives.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  12. Of all of these items, the last is most firmly a Congressional duty. That the southern border seems a complete mess cries out for oversight by Congress. If it gets a little inquisitional, well, they probably deserve that.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  13. Kevin M (90f346) — 11/17/2022 @ 12:48 pm

    If Hunter Biden is guilty of influence peddling

    Hunter Biden was guilty of selling fake influence

    or another crime,

    Could be working as a foreign agent but not registering. But not really.

    He’s clearly guilty of a few crimes (like buying a gun – but claiming he did not use illegal drugs recently- the evidence is included on the laptop files) and there’s tax problems, which can anything.

    The tricky thing for Merrick Garland will be negotiating a plea bargain without being accused of favoritism.. and he certainly doesn’t want to be tougher than usual.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  14. McCarthy’s Commitment to America is anorexic thin

    I think you need to spend some time in Fresno to see what THEY think “America” is. They probably think much the same of your commitment to “America.”

    Kevin M (90f346)

  15. Hunter and Jim Biden (Joe’s brother) pretended that Joe Biden was being bought but this was anyway after he was out of office.

    Then there’s Steve Bannon’s twisted interpretation of two sentences on the laptop files so that Hunter is giving half his salary to Joe (probably means this happened when he was young and college age in exchange for a loan) and supporting his family for 30 years (probably means his nuclear family)

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  16. Well, the end of the Jan 6 committee is likely to happen

    When what they should do is release all their non-Trump findings.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  17. So far, what litle I have seen of the Hunter Biden laptop story reminds me of the Billy Carter Libyan deal.

    In late 1978 and early 1979, Billy Carter visited Libya three times with a contingent from Georgia. He eventually registered as a foreign agent of the Libyan government and received a $220,000 loan. (Edwin P. Wilson claimed he had seen a telegram showing that Libya paid Billy Carter $2 million.[7]) This led to a Senate hearing on alleged influence peddling which the press named Billygate.[8] A Senate sub-committee was called To Investigate Activities of Individuals Representing Interests of Foreign Governments (Billy Carter—Libya Investigation).

    (Links omitted.)

    As far as I know, the Libyan money had no effect on Jimmy Carter, and I haven’t seen any real evidence that the money Hunter got affected anything his faher has done. President Biden has been more effective in checking China than Trump ever was. Or Obama, for that matter.

    Jim Miller (85fd03)

  18. President Biden has been more effective in checking China than Trump ever was.

    How is that? Almost all of the trade war was inherited from Trump. I guess, if you want to rely on the word “effective” you could make a case, but the fact is that before Trump took them on, China was our BFF.

    There are a few things that Trump got right, although the effectiveness of any action he took was suboptimal. That wasn’t by choice, but by his character.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  19. @16: Kevin McCarthy has a terrible problem. If he attempts to use his majority to govern — to work with Democrats on compromise solutions to the nation’s problems — the Freedom Rump will bail (and the Democrats, being no better, will let him sink). If he allows the Freedom Rump to control his agenda, the next election will return Democrats to power.

    So, will he allow his Rump to drive his thinking?

    Kevin M (90f346)

  20. Kevin McCarthy has a terrible problem.

    Yeah.

    He’s vacuous in thought and deed. And no George Patton when it comes to motivating his people to battle Biden.

    “We’re going to hold him by his balls and we’re going to kick him in the ass; twist his balls and kick the living sh-t out of him all the time. Our plan of operation is to advance and keep on advancing. We’re going to go through the enemy like sh-t through a tinhorn.”

    Yes, he really said this… and more; they cleaned it up for the film.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_S._Patton%27s_speech_to_the_Third_Army

    DCSCA (1c2142)

  21. I’m hearing reports that the Mar-a-Lago raid produced nothing of critical interest, and that most, if not all, documents seized were of personal interest to former President Trump.

    That’s the right-wing spin, trying to conflate the contents of the documents with Trump’s apparent motivations, but the WA Post link mentioned the following…

    The Washington Post has previously reported that among the most sensitive classified documents recovered by the FBI from Mar-a-Lago were documents about Iran and China, according to people familiar with the matter.

    At least one of the documents seized by the FBI at Mar-a-Lago on Aug. 8 describes Iran’s missile program, according to these people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe an ongoing investigation. Other documents described highly sensitive intelligence work aimed at China, they said. The Post has also reported that some of the material focuses on the defense systems of a foreign country, including its nuclear capabilities.

    It’s somewhat better that Trump stole sensitive materials and presidential records so that he could stroke his tender ego with cronies than sell them to foreign entities, but it’s still serious business that he stole the boxes and obstructed their return.

    Paul Montagu (b351b8)

  22. 18. Nor the fact that six countries spent a lot at Trump’s hotel in Washington. (And Trump had an arrangements where he was supposed to sded all profits from foreiggn governments to the U.S Treasury which Eric Trump said e did)

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  23. 22. If it had a practical purpose, it was to help him write about it. Trump is a keeper of memorabilia.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  24. What is The Agenda Of House Republicans?

    Cease U.S. financing to Ukraine; stop being suckered by Europe:

    Russia Resumes Gas Deliveries to Italy 10/5/22

    Gazprom and Eni reached an agreement with Austrian authorities to unblock gas flows

    ROME—Russian gas giant Gazprom PJSC resumed natural-gas deliveries to Italy… days after flows via Austria were suspended. Gas deliveries resumed after Gazprom and its main Italian buyer, Eni SpA, resolved a bureaucratic hurdle with Austrian authorities that had blocked supplies since Saturday, the energy companies said Wednesday.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-resumes-gas-deliveries-to-italy-11664969957

    And Italy is one of the 12 founding members of NATO.

    DCSCA (5c413d)

  25. At least one of the documents seized by the FBI at Mar-a-Lago on Aug. 8 describes Iran’s missile program

    That does not mean he had no egotistical reason for keeping it. For example, if it showed that US policy had limited the program, then I could see Trump taking it as a trophy. Never assign to evil what can be adequately explained by ego.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  26. The actual right-wing spin is that this was a fishing expedition to get the goods on Trump’s J6 activities. That this is their spin does not mean that it isn’t true.

    The left-wing spin is that Trump is an agent of Putin. Some here believe that spin.

    My spin is that he’s a stupid, ignorant, uncultured boor of a man-child. I find that this is sufficient to explain it all.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  27. I don’t know that number 1 would be provable even if it actually happened. Number 2 seems like it would bring up a lot of “Bengazi again? feelings. Number 3 might be interesting to look at for the wonkier people, but it isn’t likely going to be sexy enough to have legs unless they find a large smoking gun. Number 4 is a can of worms they probably don’t want to open unless they are trying to get rid of Trump. Number 5 has been the same issue for 50 years, I don’t think there’s going to be anything new here.

    Nic (896fdf)

  28. My spin is that after 50 years as a Russian mole, he is well-practiced in using a small crime to hide the big crime.

    nk (fac838)

  29. The hearing I want to see is on how AOC can bring in $10 million in five days. My imagination fails me.

    nk (fac838)

  30. My spin is that after 50 years as a Russian mole, he is well-practiced in using a small crime to hide the big crime.

    You actually think that the KGB was so stupid as to run a loudmouthed idiot as a mole? It’s like poker — the absolutely worst player to have in the game is the total fool, as you have no idea what he might do. The board could hold the AKQJ of hearts and your bluff with nothing fails against his pair of 3s.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  31. My imagination fails me.

    Just be glad it isn’t Schumer.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  32. Seriously, now. Was there ever any possibility that anybody in government (with the possible exception of the odd postal worker), or anybody in the ruling class generally, was going to admit that a President of the United States stole national secrets with the intention of peddling them? To foreign interests or to anybody else?

    It’s not the kind of thing you take to court to prove beyond a reasonable doubt. It’s the kind of thing you bury six feet under. Literally, if necessary.

    nk (fac838)

  33. Well, nk, I guess that proves your wild theory. It’s SO CRAZY that Trump must have done it!

    Kevin M (90f346)

  34. Many in the Republican base will love all of these investigations, but it will turn off moderate Republicans and independents who may have voted for them.
    Proceed carefully, ladies and gentlemen.
    norcal (a1f318) — 11/17/2022 @ 11:45 am

    really??

    I’ve been told the democrats, having spent the past six years on investigation after investigation, did rather well in 2020 and the midterms

    sounds like a winning strategy, so let’s go

    JF (cb4f79)

  35. Me, I think he believed that he wouldn’t be allowed into his own Presidential Library. And I can’t say that’s false; I wouldn’t let him in without frisking him for spray paint.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  36. The real GOP agenda is “how do we get rid of this guy without his mindless minions blaming us?”

    Kevin M (90f346)

  37. I would like to see Governor Kemp charge Trump with fraud for soliciting funds for Walker, then pocketing them. Then arrest him and see if he can come up with a $5 million bail.

    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2022-election/walker-calls-gop-deceptive-fundraising-georgia-race-rcna57136

    Kevin M (90f346)

  38. If you haven’t read John W. Campbell’s “Who Goes There”, see if you can find John Carpenter’s movie version “The Thing”. As strong as the creature’s urge to multiply is, every little piece of infectant it releases has a stronger urge to survive even though it betrays its parent.

    That’s the GOP and its office-holders. The party is their meal ticket and their vehicle to power, but their own jobs will always come first.

    nk (fac838)

  39. “the House agenda is investigative, not legislative”

    nice how nevertrump, having created this problem, expects republicans to fix it

    JF (cd6414)

  40. @39: True, but it’s also the Democrats, too. They are professionals in a system where there are only two companies to work for.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  41. That the public would like to see inflation ease, education improve, and illegal drugs reduced, is news that does not seem to have reached Comer and Jordan.
    And may never reach them.
    Jim Miller (85fd03) — 11/17/2022 @ 12:42 pm

    again, having created these problems, democrats expect republicans to fix them

    LOL

    JF (cd6414)

  42. I’m not #nevertrump. We’ve move past that. I’m #jailtrump.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  43. again, having created these problems, democrats expect republicans to fix them

    LOL

    It was my understanding that Republicans not only volunteered to fix them but competed strenuously for the job. NO?

    nk (fac838)

  44. @nk@44 And, given the results of the most recent election, I don’t know that anyone believed they would or could, much less the democrats.

    Nic (896fdf)

  45. Karma is a bitch—and the person who orchestrated the “non partisan” January 6 hearings has just stepped down. I think that the Democrats focused on that for a couple of years. Bad habits are contagious, and I expect that the Rethuglicans will be up for some payback.

    Comanche Voter (a15ae2)

  46. I like the whole list but republicans need to add one more:

    FTX money laundering of Ukraine aid to democrats

    how convenient that the whole house of cards falls right after the election

    JF (cd6414)

  47. Exactly, Nic. If a dull-witted person like me can see that what MAGA really stands for is “Never mind America, just pawn the libs!”, it’s no surprise that the rest of the electorate can see it too.

    nk (fac838)

  48. If the dems don’t extend the debt ceiling in the lame duck — word is that sinema and manchin are opposed to doing it via reconciliation — then we should all expect mccarthy to use the threat of default to try to force steep cuts to social security and medicare (including either privatization or block granting it to the states), and i think it’s even odds whether we default.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  49. The real GOP agenda is “how do we get rid of this guy without his mindless minions blaming us?”
    Translation: we keep trying to wag the damn dog but this pooch just won’t listen to we few. feckless fleas in the tail!

    DCSCA (5c413d)

  50. I think the Secret Service shouldn’t be in the business of enabling the drug addicted dud son of the VP and they need to redefine what “protection” is and is not.

    steveg (981fd9)

  51. If the dems don’t extend the debt ceiling in the lame duck — word is that sinema and manchin are opposed to doing it via reconciliation — then we should all expect mccarthy to use the threat of default to try to force steep cuts to social security and medicare (including either privatization or block granting it to the states), and i think it’s even odds whether we default.

    aphrael (4c4719) — 11/17/2022 @ 7:58 pm

    If he actually did that, how in God’s name would he expect a threat like that to even be taken seriously? Every single shutdown in the last 30 years, the media starts the full court blitz for their Democratic allies, and the GOP eventually cave in and sign off on the next ceiling increase.

    McCarthy would be better off just proposing an end to the damn thing altogether if he wants to actually get something in return. No wonder these people have been nothing more than controlled opposition for a generation now, they keep believing, against all evidence to the contrary, the media won’t dogpile them for anything they actually do.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  52. If he wants to keep his job, he *has* to try to do this, because his majority is razor thin and there are people in the House who believe he would win if he tried and who very badly want to win.

    Buckle up. It’s going to be a rough winter and spring.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  53. we should all expect mccarthy to use the threat of default to try to force steep cuts to social security and medicare (including either privatization or block granting it to the states)

    If they do that, I will vote Democrat for the rest of my life. Which is why they won’t.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  54. I know that everyone under, oh, 35 would be happy to see FICA taxes go away. I sure was. But I gotta tell you that when you’re 50, you attitude will have changed. Also, when (if) you go to vote, note all those gray-haired people at the polls in front of you.

    Kevin M (90f346)

  55. If he wants to keep his job, he *has* to try to do this, because his majority is razor thin and there are people in the House who believe he would win if he tried and who very badly want to win.

    Those people are utterly delusional if that’s the case. They’ve completely blinded themselves to everything that happens over the last 25 years when these things take place. The only thing that will make SS and Medicare/Medicaid go away is a western Rome-style collapse.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  56. @55. Yep. Reagan slammed a big jump in the FICA taxes in his inflationary period which stung the young – just getting into the work force. Now the same government paid GOP rumbles to take SS away from those same ‘kids’ broaching retirement age in Joey’s inflation-riddled time. Really stupid. Guess freely financxing non-American, non-voting, non-taxpaying Ukrainians comes first.

    Storm the castle.

    DCSCA (22e0ad)

  57. Pentagon ‘Disappointed’ It Failed Audit Again Despite Inching Closer to Success

    Five years after the Defense Department first accomplished the Herculean task of performing an audit of its books, it still has not adequately accounted for about 61% of its assets, according to the latest results released Tuesday.

    https://news.yahoo.com/pentagon-disappointed-failed-audit-again-140506972.html

    Golly. WTF. Let’s shovel more cash to Ukraine, where there’s no auditing at all!

    U.S. to support Ukraine ‘for as long as it takes’ -Pentagon

    https://news.yahoo.com/u-support-ukraine-long-takes-192213946.html

    … and the U.S. Military Industrial Complex smiled. Xi just grinned.

    DCSCA (22e0ad)

  58. Just the mere mention of social security/medicare cuts by mccarthy even though he recinded in last few days before election cost goppers house seats. If your a republican how would you like to run against get rid of republicans not social security and medicare.

    asset (3b8a28)

  59. the same government paid GOP rumbles to take SS away from those same ‘kids’ broaching retirement age

    Let’s put this in perspective. It’s not the “GOP”, it’s an idiot from Florida.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  60. First, the House GOP can’t unilaterally cut Social Security/Medicare spending when they not only don’t have 60 votes in the Senate, but don’t even control the Senate or the Presidency. It’s stupid fear-mongering…and it’s irresponsible.

    Second, the higher and higher the deficit rises and debt builds, the more the country is catastrophically at risk. Twelve years ago Joint Chiefs Chair Michael Mullen warned that debt was our biggest national security threat. Then the debt was $13.5T; now it’s over $30T. We pay more to service our debt than we spend on national defense. And as inflation causes interest rates to climb, it means bigger payments and increasingly more control of that debt by foreign competitors.

    Third, the irresponsible rhetoric about donor-classes and storming the castle misses that there are no painless solutions here. And that moves that worked in one economic climate may fail in a different one. Only a naif would suggest that there is a way to reign in fiscal sanity without capping/controlling entitlement spending. It’s also foolish to suggest that there is some magic millionaire tax that balances everything out. Every tax has to be balanced against its effect on economic growth and the taxes that it brings in.

    Fourth, the Right/Left b*llsh*t that is so loved by some makes it unable for us to look beyond our navels and start taking action. As sad as it is that some stupid parents want to authorize whacking off their confused teenaged son’s pecker in homage to the god of non-judgmentalism, the economic collapse of the country seems a higher priority, no? We need adult leaders, not drama queens looking for the next grift. It’s hard to sell tough choices….and so we point fingers and think that absolves us. If you’re not working to clean up our toxic politics, you’re contributing to our coming demise….own it…..

    AJ_Liberty (559632)

  61. As sad as it is that some stupid parents want to authorize whacking off their confused teenaged son’s pecker in homage to the god of non-judgmentalism, the economic collapse of the country seems a higher priority, no?

    If politicians aren’t able to multi-task, then the country is pretty much finished anyway.

    Factory Working Orphan (bce27d)

  62. What is The Agenda Of House Republicans?

    The only thing that the could do… “the House agenda is investigative, not legislative”.

    Anyone making the case that Republicans are failing the American people by foregoing legislative agendas in order to pursue oversight hearings, don’t realize that Democrats in Senate and Biden has zero interest in working with the GOP lead House.

    The House isn’t going to push the “power of the purse” to threat government shut downs.

    So, what’s left?

    Oversight Hearings.

    And I’m here for that!

    whembly (d116f3)

  63. @11

    If so, one wonders if the raid had political motives.

    Kevin M (90f346) — 11/17/2022 @ 12:58 pm

    Undoubtedly, and the longer this “investigation” goes on, the more apparent it is.

    whembly (d116f3)

  64. They could do what Trump did for four years: Watch TV, play golf, and jerk off.

    nk (51a6b4)

  65. Finally, we’ll get a colonosic view into the dark lives and sexual preferences of Hunter Biden and Anthony Fauci. I mean not together, but who knows, maybe? I haven’t kept up. I just know they’re evil and must be destroyed.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  66. There is nothing wrong with oversight, Whembly. There is something wrong with investigations that have no real point. See the following:

    https://ewerickson.substack.com/p/against-poo-flinging-monkeys

    Erickson actually has suggestions on hearings that are good ones that address issues the GOP will want to being into the 2024 conversation.

    Appalled (d74a32)

  67. They could do what Trump did for four years: Watch TV, play golf, and jerk off.

    nk (51a6b4) — 11/18/2022 @ 6:59 am

    At the same time? Could explain some tweets

    Cofefe?

    EPWJ (650a62)

  68. Twelve years ago Joint Chiefs Chair Michael Mullen warned that debt was our biggest national security threat. Then the debt was $13.5T; now it’s over $30T.

    At the time of Ridley Scott’s classic “Deficit Trials” commercial for W R Grace, the deficit was TWO! trillion dollars. Today that sounds like a Dr Evil ransom demand.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  69. There is nothing wrong with oversight, Whembly. There is something wrong with investigations that have no real point.

    To the degree that there are rules of evidence, investigations are fine. What we have now in many cases is CNN and FNC talking heads throwing poo at each other.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  70. Here are two details about Kari Lake that surprised me:

    Lake has been married to Jeff Halperin since August 1998.[17] She was previously married to Tracy Finnegan, an electrical engineer.[93] Prior to 2015 she identified as a Buddhist,[94] but converted to Christianity in 2019.

    (There’s no mention of any children.)

    Oh, and she’s been an independent and Democrat, as well as a Republican.

    Jim Miller (f29931)

  71. Look, all things Hunter Biden are mostly ginned up to keep the Sage of Mar-A-Lago happy. It’s part of his self-justification for the actions to led to his first impeachment.

    Appalled (375d25)

  72. On the theory that the worst spin on GOP views can be found on Speaker Pelosi’s website, not one quote from Kevin McCarthy is available, but she does attack the Republican Study Committee — lead by Steve Scalise as follows:

    Leader McCarthy is just the latest of a growing list of extreme MAGA Republicans who have not-so-subtly suggested brutal cuts on Medicare and Social Security. On Sunday, House Whip Steve Scalise admitted to Fox News that the Republican Study Committee’s plan to raise the retirement age, privatize Social Security and slash Medicare is what the GOP really means when it says they want to “shore up & strengthen” these programs.

    1. There is no quote by McCarthy to back this charge. He did say:

    “You can’t just continue down the path to keep spending and adding to the debt. And if people want to make a debt ceiling [for a longer period of time], just like anything else, there comes a point in time where, okay, we’ll provide you more money, but you got to change your current behavior. We’re not just going to keep lifting your credit card limit, right? And we should seriously sit together and [figure out] where can we eliminate some waste? Where can we make the economy grow stronger?”

    But that’s just common sense.

    2. Raise retirement age: It is either this or raise the tax on young people. As long as they keep the 62 year early entry point for those who find themselves involuntarily retired, this is a better option than raising taxes. As we all know, raised taxes always get misdirected.

    3. Privatize Social Security: The 401k system has essentially done that. Raising contribution caps, and requiring income taxes on withdrawals to go into the SS trust fund would fix a few problems (e.g. procrastination on retirement planning). It would also help to consolidate the various non-SS retirement savings programs.

    4. Medicare cannot continue as it is. Either the tax needs doubling or the benefits needs to be dialed back. I’m a bit embarrassed by some of the things that are paid by Medicare. Drug “samples” that are free to everyone by the taxpayer, who pays full list price. I’ve mixed feelings about the hideously expensive biologicals (e.g. monoclonal antibodies) that are available as maintenance drugs under Medicare B. Mixed because they are useful and they would never be developed without a deep pocket buyer. In the end, the young FICA taxpayer will benefit from these later in life.

    I expect Medicare to become a HMO/PPO kind of thing, as currently seen in Medicare Advantage programs. The current system is wonderful for oldsters like me, but it’s just unsustainable. There is plenty of room for reform, but ending it would kill grandma pretty quickly.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  73. *…free to everyone BUT the taxpayers …

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  74. Keri Lake is an opportunist. It’s a mystery that anyone is surprised that she went into politics.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  75. Guy Bensons brilliant article:

    “It’s a delicate balance, but DeSantis’ best (and arguably only) path to 2024 success is avoiding alienating large swaths of Trump supporters (beyond his hardest core fans, who will spit fire at anyone challenging their guy) by persuasively claiming the mantle of a younger, more effective, more electable guardian and advocate of Trump’s agenda and legacy.”

    EPWJ (650a62)

  76. It’s not whether Congress should extend the debt limit, but what it should tack onto the bill in the House. For example, a “Drill Baby Drill!” law opening up lease sales and/or one limiting state rules against fracking.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  77. It would also be a good idea to remove California’s authority to substitute their own formula for the EPA’s Reformulated Gasoline specification. Driving gas prices in CA down to the national average would be a good political move. Also, cap gasoline taxes.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  78. Kevin M (1ea396) — 11/18/2022 @ 9:07 am

    I’ve mixed feelings about the hideously expensive biologicals (e.g. monoclonal antibodies) that are available as maintenance drugs under Medicare B. Mixed because they are useful and they would never be developed without a deep pocket buyer.

    Because of FDA regulation.

    They talk a lot about tings that would not be developed except for the United States of America. But there’s a lot that can’t be developed under the current system (unless a philanthrofist like Bill Gates or Jeff Bezos or McKenzie Scott decided to et involved

    And then you can’t advertise a vitamin or a nutrient as a cure for any disease. (if you want to sell it)

    So millions of young women suffer from morning sickness rather than simply taking Vitamin B6.

    The current system is wonderful for oldsters like me, but it’s just unsustainable.

    It’s unsustainable because it continuously gets more expensive.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  79. Senate Republicans last month released a report that said “it appears reasonable to conclude” that COVID-19 escaped from a lab.

    No, two different versions, one somewhat mild and more or less successfully contained or not noticed, the other more severe, separately escaped from two different labs.

    The first one toward late August 2019 but before September 12, 2019, probably from the Wuhan Center of Virology, and the second strain around the time when the Wuhan Center for Disease Control nd Prevention moved to within 300 years of the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market on December 2, 2019.

    That’s why the Chinese government invented the forzen fish theory – but they have several others.

    Biden refused to answer whether he had discussed with XI wither the fentanyl coming from China or the origin of Covid, which means he probably didn’t – he just wants Xi to know for certain that invading Taiwan (and a few other tings) are a red line for the United States (and how many red lines or issues can you have?)

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  80. We need Vindman to leak the transcript of his meeting with Xi. First of all to prove Biden didn’t sleep through the whole thing, and second, if he didn’t sleep, to see for ourselves what sort of blundering buffoonery he managed to spout

    steveg (2e960f)

  81. No, two different versions, one somewhat mild and more or less successfully contained or not noticed, the other more severe, separately escaped from two different labs.

    Occam is throwing up.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  82. Captain Obvious – strikes again!

    Wayne Allyn Root is a right-wing nutter who bought into the lie that the Covid vaccines killed untold thousands. Dude is heavy on allegation, light on fact.

    Paul Montagu (b351b8)

  83. Wayne Allyn Root is a right-wing nutter who bought into the lie that the Covid vaccines killed untold thousands. Dude is heavy on allegation, light on fact.

    Paul Montagu (b351b8) — 11/18/2022 @ 8:25 pm

    Root is frequently on Billy Cunningham’s radio show. They are birds of a feather. Cunningham frequently calls himself “a great American” on his show. It’s hilarious.

    norcal (a1f318)

  84. Cleaning up the DOJ is described as nothing ‘other than inflicting pain on the current administration’?

    Hopefully they’ll also investigate the FTX/Democratic Party/Ukraine money laundering scheme that helped turn the Red Wave into Republicans (barely) winning. You’d think it’d be worth a post.

    Obudman (a1c23a)

  85. Hopefully they’ll also investigate the FTX/Democratic Party/Ukraine money laundering scheme that helped turn the Red Wave into Republicans (barely) winning.

    And now you know how Trump gets their beer money.

    Nigerian princes hurt most.

    nk (c331a4)

  86. What I find hard to believe is that this lunacy sprouts spontaneously. But it’s just as hard to believe that Trump is capable of organizing his sock drawer let alone a kompromat section. The Russians?

    nk (c331a4)

  87. Obudman (a1c23a) — 11/19/2022 @ 4:06 am

    I’d like to think FTK was responsible, its reassuring to have a black and white “villain” to blame for all our troubles…

    I never thought a wave was forming, it was Fox news cheerleading that overtook sober thinkers

    1. The Roe-Dodd decision – fueled 100’s of millions into all democrat races

    2. Oz the clown, really damped nationally the enthusiasm for Trumps political wisdom affecting many senate races

    3. DeSantis’ perfect storm, led to lazy voters staying home in the Midwest and West – as many as 3% estimated to decided not to wait in long lines

    4. Trump supporters acting like morons

    5. Never Trumpers sabotaging themselves

    The funding was never there, we were outspent 6 to one in almost all races – that makes a big deal.

    EPWJ (650a62)

  88. 4. Trump supporters acting like morons

    EPWJ (650a62) — 11/19/2022 @ 8:23 am

    They were acting? Give them all Oscars!

    norcal (a1f318)

  89. Hopefully they’ll also investigate the FTX/Democratic Party/Ukraine money laundering scheme that helped turn the Red Wave into Republicans (barely) winning.

    What an amazingly thin reed you choose to ignore the elephant in the room.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  90. There is an unresolved GOP civil war, whose policy conflicts are complicated by idolatry.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  91. But it’s just as hard to believe that Trump is capable of organizing his sock drawer

    I doubt that Trump knows where his sock drawer is. He has people for that.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  92. There is an unresolved GOP civil war, whose policy conflicts are complicated by idolatry.

    Kevin M (1ea396) — 11/19/2022 @ 1:33 pm

    We had to some extent – the same problem in 1980 – it was solved by Bush agreeing that Reagan and he should unite the party, some holdbacks joined Anderson which almost derailed Reagans first election.

    There are only 2 paths to Republicans winning the legislature and the White house

    Trump stands aside and supports whole heartedly the candidate

    Trump picks DeSantis as his VP (or whoever is leading if DeSantis doesnt run which is looking like that’s going to happen – is he’s happy where he is)

    Hillary lost because Bernies supporters stayed home (all she had to do was pick him for VP)

    Bush Sr lost by not picking Perot

    Romney had his choice blew it on his VP

    VP’s important

    Election winners in divided electorates

    EPWJ (650a62)

  93. 90.

    4. Trump supporters acting like morons

    EPWJ (650a62) — 11/19/2022 @ 8:23 am

    They were acting? Give them all Oscars!

    norcal (a1f318) — 11/19/2022 @ 12:34 pm

    Nobody is that stupid. They hoped voters were ignorant and misinformed. But not enough were.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

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