Power Shift in Washington Could Signal “Day of Reckoning”

By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
Staff Journalist

Conservative leaders are signaling that big wins this fall could mean investigations ijnto many of the Administration’s shady antics, from bailouts and dropped charges in the Black Panthers voter intimidation case to ACORN funding and offering candidates’ jobs to keep them out of key Congressional races.

Politico is reporting that a day of reckoning may be on the horizon for liberal lawmakers should conservatives win back control of the House and possibly the Senate. 

Representatives Darrell Issa (R-CA) of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and Lamar Smith (R-TX) are said to be “quietly gearing up for a possible season of subpoenas not seen since the Clinton wars of the late 1990’s.”

Kurt Barella, a spokesman for Rep. Issa, said conservatives will look for the president’s cooperation should these investigations get underway.

“How acrimonious things get really depends on how willing the administration is in accepting our findings [and] responding to our questions,” Bardella said.

Even though the West Wing is not saying so in public, they’re understandably worried.

Lanny Davis, a deputy White House counsel during the Clinton era, believes the coming investigations will be even worse than those he lived through. “I actually think it will be even worse than what happened to Bill Clinton, because of the animosity they already feel for President Obama,” he told Politico.

To date, there are six possible committee investigations that could go forward if conservatives win back control of the House in November.

First, there’s the Sestak case in which the White House tried to force Democratic Senate candidates Joe Sestak from a race against long-time incumbent Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania. Although the Administration blamed former President Bill Clinton for the attempted bribe of Sestak, Clinton has since denied this. Rep. Issa wants the whole affair investigated and has already called upon Attorney General Eric Holder to do so. They will also investigate a similar attempt to dissuade Andrew Romanoff from running in Colorado.

Second would be all the bailouts, the one investigation that could the most political danger to Obama because of the public’s hatred of these policies. Issa plans to look into the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), the AIG bailout, the Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae fiasco that led to the financial meltdown as well as the takeover of GM and Chrysler.

If anything, these investigations will open up the possibility of accessing thousands of the Administration’s e-mails which could uncover all kinds of potential headaches for an unpopular liberal president running for re-election of a conservative-leaning nation. 

Issa will also investigate the sweetheart deals made between Countrywide Mortgage and other government officials, a situation that led to the involuntary retirement earlier this year of Senator Chris Dodd. Even if these investigations turn up deals between the mortgage giant and conservative lawmakers, Issa plans to get to the bottom of it.

The dropping of charges against the New Black Panther Party for voter intimidated that took place during the 2008 Presidential election is also high on the list of demands for further investigation. Even though video tapes clearly show members of the party waving police batons at incoming voters at a Philadelphia polling station, Attorney General Eric Holder dropped all charges. Not long afterward, insiders at the Justice Department came forward to allege that racially motivated policies were behind the decision to toss out the case.

Another possible investigation concerns the infamous community organizing group, ACORN, which is linked to Obama and his 2008 presidential campaign. Even though ACORN has since gone out of business, many members of Congress are looking for an all-out investigation into the organization.

An investigation into the Minerals Management Service (MMS) is also high on the list.  Some reports hint that MMS employees may have been having affairs with the workers they were supposed to oversee and Interior Secretary Ken Salazar has already admitted that the agency was “asleep at the switch” in monitoring BP’s Deepwater Horizon platform before it blew up last spring. Issa wants to know which officials were responsible for the mess ups and why the response and clean-up effort took so long to get underway. 

None of these investigations will bode well for an Administration hoping to convince the American people to re-elect them to another term.

But some say there could be a downside to all this. “If Republicans go on an investigative witch hunt when and if they gain power in November, then their power will be very short lived,” said Mark McKinnon, a former George W. Bush adviser sympathetic to Obama. “The American public wants Congress to work together, not to investigate each other.”

© All Rights Reserved, Living His Life Abundantly®/Women of Grace®  http://www.womenofgrace.com

Comments are closed.