As all of us know, President Obama picked a fight with the GOP this week over recess appointments. The question now is—what’s the smart way to respond?
At first blush, I’m in agreement with Ace, from Ace of Spades, posted the day Obama threw down the gauntlet:
Basically Obama is running for President and he wants his opponent to be “Congressional Republicans”. Sometimes the best strategy is to skip a fight you want to have and should have simply because simply engaging in it is a win for your opponent.
Think of it as ignoring a comment troll. It’s unsatisfying but effective.
Let the GOP candidates take this fight to Obama while the House actually focuses on things like the tax bill that’s coming up in 2 months.
Today the WaPo weighed in on Obama’s side:
Obama’s justifiable ‘power grab’ on recess appointments
“UNPRECEDENTED.” “A power grab.” “A flagrant contempt for the rules.” Such were the howls from many on the right after President Obama this week used recess appointments to install a new director at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and to reconstitute the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) with three new members.
Republicans may well be correct that Mr. Obama is playing politics with these appointments. He announced the Cordray appointment during a stump speech in swing-state Ohio, where he railed against Republican obstructionism. His supporters in organized labor will no doubt be pleased that he filled the slots on the NLRB.
But so what? Both the consumer bureau and the labor relations board are agencies of the U.S. government, created by Congress, and it is inexcusable that congressional obstructionism would leave them unable to function. If Republicans don’t like the structure or purpose of either agency, they should try to alter them through legislation. Meanwhile their filibustering against qualified nominees to make political points or extort concessions from the White House cripples government and discourages good people from serving. That is the real poisonous practice, in which both parties have engaged. Until there is a de-escalation, the country will continue to pay a high price.
To be sure, there’s enough plague-on-both-of-your-houses language in the editorial for the Post to claim that it’s not being biased. But, when you read the whole piece, the tone is clearly pro-Obama and dismissive of the Republican position on this issue.
(I must give credit to the Post: they didn’t become active in the Obama re-election campaign on a Saturday, when everyone was watching the NFL playoffs. They did it in the middle of the week).
Nevertheless, this is a problem for the House GOP. President Obama wants a fight and undoubtedly is willing to play rough. He knows he can be loose with the facts, because the MSM badly wants him to win in November. (How else can you explain the overall tone, to include the headline, of the WaPo’s for-record position on the recess appointments?)
Recess appointments are an inside baseball issue, and most Americans are still following football…literally AND figuratively. Obama badly needs a GOP public relations/perception misstep and the MSM clearly wants to help.
What are your thoughts, Redstate readers, on how the GOP should play this?