- Posted April 27, 2012 by
Watertown, New York
This iReport is part of an assignment:
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Republicans Blame Obama for Their Obstructionism
"Do not ask what good we do. That is not a fair question, in these days of faction." Special interests? Yes, Congress had them in 1796 as well.
Robert Draper's new book, "Do Not Ask What Good We Do", exposes the GOP conspiracy against President Obama.
" 'Do Not Ask What Good We Do' takes its cue (and title) from a bitter moment very long ago. “Do not ask what good we do: that is not a fair question, in these days of faction,” U.S. Representative Fisher Ames wrote in 1796, after concluding that four terms in the House was plenty.
Fed up with congressional partisanship, Ames served his last term, threw in the towel and, presumably, hired the quickest mode of dispatch the late18th century could offer to his home in Massachusetts.
Maybe it’s comforting to know that the acrid politics of the 112th Congress have a precedence in the bickering that took place some two centuries ago. Or maybe not: many Americans are fed up with the adherence to ideology that trumps compromise in modern-day Washington.
And despite minute-by-minute political updates in the news, there seems to be a vast confusion in our country about why Congress has failed to pass much meaningful legislation.
Draper’s peek-behind-the-curtain portraits of members of Congress hint at why the House is so stalled.
The revelations Draper, a contributing writer for The New York Times Magazine, unearths include the infighting among Boehner and his deputies, such as Eric Cantor; the internecine battles among Tea Party freshmen and their colleagues who are just as new to the House but already fed-up with the Tea Party’s refusal to compromise; and the lengthy behind-the-scenes negotiating the White House attempted in the effort to raise the debt ceiling.
For all of Boehner’s understandable public assertions that the freshmen were in line, Do Not Ask What Good We Do proves how much time Boehner had to spend handling the freshmen who, like Idaho Republican Raul Labrador, believed the very institution they had recently joined “needed a thorough delousing.”
Draper profiles firebrands like Florida’s Allen West, a former Army lieutenant colonel who attempts to induce his draconian brand of military discipline on America’s finances and security apparatus. West is also the only Republican member of the Congressional Black Caucus.
West comes across as someone whose mouth gets him in trouble (he recently nabbed coverage for labeling 81 of his House colleagues communists, and then got more coverage for refusing to back down from the accusation); his hand-wringing paranoia would have more bite if it weren’t so nostalgic.
It’s clearly the Tea Party freshmen who interest Draper the most in Do Not Ask What Good We Do. “I thought it would be really interesting not just as a work of political journalism but as a human enterprise to see these self-styled Mr. Smiths come to Washington with the belief that things needed to be changed and to see how they would fare not only in the Capitol city but in a body of 435 individuals who represent all these different swaths of America,” he says.
In other words, Draper isn’t that interested in power. It’s the hidden side of power, the uncertainty of the people who have it, the aspect politicians try to keep secret, that he’s after. "
By Claiborne Smith, The Daily Beast
Draper exposed the hidden agenda, the coordinated effort to destroy Obama's Presidency despite what harm they did to the U.S. The irony of this GOP plan? Now, Republicans blame Obama's policies for our slow recovery and job creation.
Romney says it's Obama's failed policies we have to blame. No.
We need to ask why those policies failed and who was responsible for their failure.
As Senate Minority leader said, "My main job here in the U.S. Senate is to make President Obama a one term president." This GOP conspiracy is nothing short of treason. Certainly, not "politics as usual".