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Obama Administration Overreach


neutrinosalad
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Back this up. (probably should go in a new thread) You don't get to claim this without support.

 

I will back it up. I am going to broaden it though since this is a new thread and this will just be a collection of things that have been done by the Obama Administration that have led me to dislike his presidency. A lot of these things are what I see as overreach or distasteful rather than purely being "rule by executive fiat". I will add some commentary, but otherwise I will leave it to people to judge for themselves. Also, I will pre-empt this by saying that I am currently ideologically inclined to be critical of the Obama Administration, so everything is going through that filter.

 

Obama's move on deferring enforcement of immigration is unconstitutional:

 

 

The President’s claim of prosecutorial discretion in immigration matters threatens to vest the Executive Branch with broad domestic policy authority that the Constitution does not grant it. For if a President can refuse to enforce a federal law against a class of 800,000 to 1.76 million individuals, what discernible limits are there to prosecutorial discretion? Can a President decline to enforce federal laws barring that class from voting in federal elections? Can a President decline to enforce the deportation statute against all illegal immigrants because of a belief in an “open borders” policy? Can a President who wants tax cuts that a recalcitrant Congress will not enact decline to enforce the income tax laws? Can a President effectively repeal the environmental laws by refusing to sue polluters, or workplace and labor laws by refusing to fine violators?

 

Source: https://www.law.yale.edu/system/files/area/conference/ilroundtable/ILR13_CDDavidDelahuntyJohnYoo.pdf

 

Source: http://cis.org/Obama-Deferred-Action-Amnest-Executive-Action-Unconstitutional

 

The interesting thing here is that on the basis of the law, what Barack Obama is doing is unconstitutional, but it could be "made" constitutional if you stack the courts with people who are ideologically inclined to agree with his actions.

 

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Using the IRS to suppress political dissent:

 

 

Beginning in March 2010, the IRS more closely scrutinized certain organizations applying for tax-exempt status under sections 501©(3) and 501©(4) of the Internal Revenue Code by focusing on groups with certain words in their names.[33][34][35] In May 2010, some employees of the "Determinations Unit" of the Cincinnati office of the IRS, which is tasked with reviewing applications pertaining to tax-exempt status, began developing a spreadsheet that became known as the "Be On the Look Out" list.

The list, first distributed in August 2010, suggested intensive scrutiny of applicants with names related to a number of political causes, including names related to the Tea Party movement and other conservative causes.[35] Eventually, IRS employees in at least Cincinnati, Ohio; El Monte, California; Laguna Niguel, California; and Washington, D.C.[36] applied closer scrutiny to applications from organizations that:[37][38][39]

  • referenced words such as "Tea Party", "Patriots", or "9/12 Project", "progressive," "occupy," "Israel," "open source software," "medical marijuana" and "occupied territory advocacy" in the case file;[34][35]
  • outlined issues in the application that included government spending, government debt, or taxes;
  • involved advocating or lobbying to "make America a better place to live";
  • had statements in the case file that criticized how the country is being run;
  • advocated education about the Constitution and the Bill of Rights;
  • were focused on challenging the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act—known by many as Obamacare;
  • questioned the integrity of federal elections.

Over the two years between April 2010 and April 2012, the IRS essentially placed on hold the processing of applications for 501©(4) tax-exemption status received from organizations with "Tea Party", "patriots", or "9/12" in their names. While apparently none of these organizations' applications were denied during this period,[Note 2] only 4 were approved.[41] During the same general period, the agency approved applications from several dozen presumably liberal-leaning organizations whose names included terms such as "progressive", "progress", "liberal", or "equality".[41][42]However, the IRS also selected several progressive- or Democratic-leaning organizations for increased scrutiny. An affiliate of the liberal group Emerge America had its request for tax-exempt status denied, leading to a review (and the eventual revocation) of the larger Emerge America organization's tax-exempt status.[40] The conservative National Review states that a November 2010 version of the IRS's BOLO list indicates that liberal and conservative groups were in fact treated differently because liberal groups could be approved for tax-exempt status by line agents, while tea party groups could not.

 

The IRS targeted political groups opposed to the Affordable Care Act or associated with the Tea Party and gave them increased scrutiny. Obama was not directly implicated in this, but the IRS does fall underneath the executive branch and its behavior was politically aligned with what he wanted.

 

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IRS_targeting_controversy

 

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Racial bias in the handling of voter intimidation:

 

The New Black Panther Party voter intimidation case is a political controversy in the United States concerning an incident that occurred during the 2008 election. The New Black Panther Partyand two of its members, Minister King Samir Shabazz and Jerry Jackson, were charged with voter intimidation for their conduct outside a polling station in Philadelphia.

The Department of Justice later narrowed the charges against Minister King Shabazz and dismissed the charges against the New Black Panther Party and Jerry Jackson. The decision to dismiss the charges has led to accusations that the Department of Justice under the Obama administration is biased against white victims and unwilling to prosecute minorities for civil rights violations. These charges have been most notably made by J. Christian Adams, who in May 2010 resigned his post in the Department of Justice in protest over the Obama administration's perceived mishandling of the case, and by his former supervisor Christopher Coates.

Counter-accusations were made, including claims that the actual incident was relatively minor but had been blown out of proportion by individuals and groups with political motives. Then-AG Eric Holder rejected claims that his Justice Department considers the race of an alleged victim when deciding which cases to pursue. The case and its handling by the Department of Justice is currently being investigated by the United States Commission on Civil Rights. The Justice Department reportedly carried out its own internal investigation into the handling of the case.

 

The AG, Eric Holder, was selected by Obama.

 

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Black_Panther_Party_voter_intimidation_case

 

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Working to silence political dissent from journalists:

 

On May 17, 2013, the Washington Post reported the United States Department of Justice had monitored Rosen's activities by tracking his visits to the State Department, through phone traces, timing of calls and his personal emails.[4]

To obtain the warrants, the Justice Department labeled Rosen a "criminal co-conspirator" with Stephen Jin-Woo Kim.[5]Attorney General Eric Holder personally signed off on the search warrant of Rosen, who was labeled a "flight-risk" to keep from being informed of the ongoing surveillance.[6] The Justice Department's "aggressive investigative methods" have caused various analysts[7][8] to express concern their "investigative methods of classified leaks by government officials are having a chilling effect on news organizations' ability to play a watchdog role". Fox News contributor, Judge Andrew Napolitano, commented: "This is the first time that the federal government has moved to this level of taking ordinary, reasonable, traditional, lawful reporter skills and claiming they constitute criminal behavior."[9]

 

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Rosen_(journalist)

 

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Engaging in overt (and unconstitutional) partisan attacks on Republicans:

 

WASHINGTON—The Supreme Court on Monday unanimously threw out the corruption conviction of former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, a striking reversal that could make it harder for prosecutors to pursue public officials for an array of bribery and corruption offenses.

The ruling was a notable undoing of a high-profile corruption case. It had been largely expected since April when the justices sharply questioned Mr. McDonnell’s conviction in oral arguments, but its unanimity and strong wording sent an unusually clear message of concern about prosecutorial overreach.

The court, in an opinion by Chief Justice John Roberts, said that the Justice Department’s theory of the case, and the instructions given to the jury, were so broad they could criminalize ordinary constituent service and other conduct that politicians engage in routinely.

Mr. McDonnell, a Republican, was indicted just days after he left office in January 2014. A jury that September found him guilty of 11 corruption-related counts, and a judgesentenced him to two years in prison, though he remained free while the case was on appeal.

Prosecutors alleged that the former governor and his wife, Maureen, secretly accepted more than $175,000 in gifts and loans from a wealthy businessman who sought favorable consideration from the government for his dietary supplement company, Star Scientific. Ms. McDonnell was also convicted in the case.

The Supreme Court, in a disapproving tone, cited the gifts in detail, including a luxury watch, designer clothes and the former governor’s borrowing of fancy sports car.

“There is no doubt that this case is distasteful; it may be worse than that,” Chief Justice Roberts wrote. “But our concern is not with tawdry tales of Ferraris, Rolexes and ball gowns. It is instead with the broader legal implications of the government’s boundless interpretation of the federal bribery statute.”

The Justice Department alleged that Mr. McDonnell agreed to legitimize, promote and seek research studies for the company’s products. Among other things, the former governor arranged meetings for the businessman, Jonnie Williams, with government officials, and he hosted and attended events designed to encourage state university researchers to initiate studies of a Star product, the department said.

The central issue was whether Mr. McDonnell engaged in official acts in exchange for Mr. Williams’ largesse.

Mr. McDonnell argued he didn’t take any formal government actions on Mr. Williams’ behalf and didn’t pressure others to do so. Arranging meetings and attending events are commonplace activities that public officials do as a matter of course for constituents, Mr. McDonnell’s attorneys argued.

The Supreme Court agreed. Chief Justice Roberts said that under the Justice Department’s expansive interpretation of the law, a politician could find himself in legal trouble if he accepted anything from a lunch to a campaign contribution and later did almost anything on the giver’s behalf.

 

What makes this one worse is the hypocrisy of it.
There is an article that has evidence that Obama has taken money for appointments before, implicating him in direct corruption:

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Obama trying to bypass Senate approval for appointments, which was struck down as unconstitutional:

 

 

The Supreme Court unanimously struck down as unconstitutional the Obama administration’s “recess” appointments to the National Labor Relations Board, which were conducted while the Senate was formally in session.

The “decision marks the 12th time the Supreme Court unanimously ruled against the Obama administration on the issue of executive power,” Heritage Foundation legal expert Elizabeth Slattery explains.

The Constitution allows the President to make appointments during a Senate recess. President Obama’s appointments, which bypassed Senate approval, were made during a period when the Senate convened pro-forma sessions every three days. The Supreme Court held that recess appointments can only be made during breaks of “sufficient length.”

 

Source: https://www.myheritage.org/news/unanimous-supreme-court-rules-against-the-obama-administrations-unconstitutional-power-grab/

 

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Here are couple more sources that list off some overreach:
And here is one from factcheck:

 

 

Adam Winkler, a professor of law at UCLA, told us that Goodlatte “overreaches a bit.” However, he says, “it’s clear the Obama administration, like the Bush administration before it, has been aggressively expanding presidential authority. This a worrisome trend — sufficiently so that exaggeration and misrepresentation aren’t necessary.”

 

Source: http://www.factcheck.org/2014/07/obama-and-executive-overreach/

 

The growth of executive authority is a part of a larger trend, so it may not all be Obama.

 

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I realize this is a lot of information in one post, but I wanted to put up enough information so that people could take in a broader scope of a more contrarian view (for this forum) of the Obama administration. Just putting this out here more for informative purposes where one can decide how to see the information rather than to argue a point.
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Obama trying to bypass Senate approval for appointments, which was struck down as unconstitutional:

 

 

Source: https://www.myheritage.org/news/unanimous-supreme-court-rules-against-the-obama-administrations-unconstitutional-power-grab/

 

I haven't read through all the links, but how many are going to be like this one, an attempt to circumvent the blockades on judicial appointments the Republicans have only erected against this one president? How many of these accusations are going to be simply your right-skewed perspective on how Obama had to fight upstream through two terms to get the respect every other POTUS has been given as part of the job?

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I will back it up. I am going to broaden it though since this is a new thread and this will just be a collection of things that have been done by the Obama Administration that have led me to dislike his presidency. A lot of these things are what I see as overreach or distasteful rather than purely being "rule by executive fiat". I will add some commentary, but otherwise I will leave it to people to judge for themselves. Also, I will pre-empt this by saying that I am currently ideologically inclined to be critical of the Obama Administration, so everything is going through that filter.

Just to note that your original claim was (emphasis added)

For the last eight years, Barack Obama has openly defied the constitutional boundaries of the presidency

 

Obama's move on deferring enforcement of immigration is unconstitutional:

An executive order, which most (if not all) presidents have issued, and the challenge went through the courts. Just as the constitution dictates.

 

 

Using the IRS to suppress political dissent:

 

 

The IRS targeted political groups opposed to the Affordable Care Act or associated with the Tea Party and gave them increased scrutiny. Obama was not directly implicated in this,

(emphasis added)

 

'nuff said. If you can't link this to the president then it's a BS accusation. Though as I recall, it was revealed that liberal groups were investigated too. No targeting.

 

Racial bias in the handling of voter intimidation:

 

 

 

 

The AG, Eric Holder, was selected by Obama.

We discussed this, back in the day

http://www.scienceforums.net/topic/50244-obama-withdraws-lawsuits-against-blacks/

 

The decision not to file criminal charges and instead pursue a civil action was the decision of the Bush administration, and the person doing the intimidation (wielding a baton) was punished. In post #43, I point out that "the Bush DoJ declined to pursue a similar case in 2006, even though it involved a gun at the polling site, not a baton."

 

Once case is not evidence of racial bias anyway, and you have presented no evidence that this was at the behest of the president.

 

 

 

I may or may not debunk the rest of these later on. Thus far it looks more like you just don't like the president, and are looking for excuses. Nothing so far that rises to showing he has "has openly defied the constitutional boundaries of the presidency"

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I haven't read through all the links, but how many are going to be like this one, an attempt to circumvent the blockades on judicial appointments the Republicans have only erected against this one president? How many of these accusations are going to be simply your right-skewed perspective on how Obama had to fight upstream through two terms to get the respect every other POTUS has been given as part of the job?

 

So it is okay for a man to circumvent our laws because the other side is being quote unquote "too difficult"?

 

This kind of circumventing of the rules bends the separation of powers and consolidates more power underneath the executive branch exactly like I talked about.

 

Also, if this was not struck down as unconstitutional it would set a precedent for a Republican president to do the exact same thing where he (or she) could load up the judicial branch with people who are ideologically aligned with them with absolutely no opposition to question the appointments.

 

Edit:

 

(emphasis added)

 

'nuff said. If you can't link this to the president then it's a BS accusation. Though as I recall, it was revealed that liberal groups were investigated too. No targeting.

 

Ahh, but here's the thing. Since the IRS exists within the executive branch, underneath the president's leadership, the president bears part of the responsibility. Is this not how we view our leaders today?

 

It is the same for Steve Job's at Apple. When Apple was failing in the 80's Steve Jobs took the brunt of the blame and when it succeeded, he took the brunt of the accolades even though he had a large team working underneath him.

Edited by Capayan
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So it is okay for a man to circumvent our laws because the other side is being quote unquote "too difficult"?

 

This kind of circumventing of the rules bends the separation of powers and consolidates more power underneath the executive branch exactly like I talked about.

 

Also, if this was not struck down as unconstitutional it would set a precedent for a Republican president to do the exact same thing where he (or she) could load up the judicial branch with people who are ideologically aligned with them with absolutely no opposition to question the appointments.

 

Seems par for the course lately, Republicans sludging up the works and then pointing at the POTUS for not getting things done (I've watched them do this ever since Reagan - mess up the system, then claim the system is messed up). I don't think much of your evidence for "circumvent[ing] our laws". It seems as though procedure has been followed, if respect on both sides is lacking.

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Ahh, but here's the thing. Since the IRS exists within the executive branch, underneath the president's leadership, the president bears part of the responsibility. Is this not how we view our leaders today?

 

 

So does the job I have. Is it reasonable to hold him personally responsible for the job I do? Do you really think the president has the time to micromanage the federal government at that level? That he has a knowledge of what goes on in an office in Cincinnati? Further, the implication here is that he ordered them to do what they allegedly did.

 

 

Which is moot in light of the fact that liberal/progressive groups were investigated, too. From your quote, "referenced words such as "Tea Party", "Patriots", or "9/12 Project", "progressive," "occupy," "Israel," "open source software," "medical marijuana" and "occupied territory advocacy"

 

Since when has the GOP advocated for medical marijuana? Of these search terms/phrases, 3 are associated with conservative causes and 6 with liberal. But somehow you are contending that conservatives were singled out.

 

In fact, the three that were denied tax-exempt status were liberal organizations

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/21/business/advocacy-groups-denied-tax-exempt-status-are-named.html?_r=1

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So it is okay for a man to circumvent our laws because the other side is being quote unquote "too difficult"?

 

This kind of circumventing of the rules bends the separation of powers and consolidates more power underneath the executive branch exactly like I talked about.

 

Also, if this was not struck down as unconstitutional it would set a precedent for a Republican president to do the exact same thing where he (or she) could load up the judicial branch with people who are ideologically aligned with them with absolutely no opposition to question the appointments.

 

Edit:

 

 

Ahh, but here's the thing. Since the IRS exists within the executive branch, underneath the president's leadership, the president bears part of the responsibility. Is this not how we view our leaders today?

 

It is the same for Steve Job's at Apple. When Apple was failing in the 80's Steve Jobs took the brunt of the blame and when it succeeded, he took the brunt of the accolades even though he had a large team working underneath him.

What you are claiming President Obama has done violates the law. Under Article 2 Section 4 of the constitution these would be impeachable offenses if you are correct. Yet the Republican control house and Senate hasn't moved on impeachment. The reason they haven't is simple; President Obama has not broken the law. You are ignoring the checks and balances in our system. Ignoring that there are processes by which a Presidents actions are determined to be unconstitutional or not. The fact that President Obama have never been proven to have violated the constitution despite court proceedings and legislative branch challanges debunks all of your claims.

 

An action being legal doesn't automatically make it good. Arguing that many things President Obama has done hurt the economy, security, or etc of the nation is a very different conversation than claiming he violated the constitution. In my opinion you discredit your own points by overreaching.

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So it is okay for a man to circumvent our laws because the other side is being quote unquote "too difficult"?

 

This kind of circumventing of the rules bends the separation of powers and consolidates more power underneath the executive branch exactly like I talked about.

 

Also, if this was not struck down as unconstitutional it would set a precedent for a Republican president to do the exact same thing where he (or she) could load up the judicial branch with people who are ideologically aligned with them with absolutely no opposition to question the appointments.

 

 

Was it struck down as unconstitutional? The ruling was that three days was an insufficient length to count as a recess, but recess appointments are constitutional. (Article II section2. "The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their next Session.") Unless there was some precedent being violated, this was a case of the court making a vague statement about what constitutes a recess clearer.

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So does the job I have. Is it reasonable to hold him personally responsible for the job I do? Do you really think the president has the time to micromanage the federal government at that level? That he has a knowledge of what goes on in an office in Cincinnati? Further, the implication here is that he ordered them to do what they allegedly did.

 

 

Which is moot in light of the fact that liberal/progressive groups were investigated, too. From your quote, "referenced words such as "Tea Party", "Patriots", or "9/12 Project", "progressive," "occupy," "Israel," "open source software," "medical marijuana" and "occupied territory advocacy"

 

Since when has the GOP advocated for medical marijuana? Of these search terms/phrases, 3 are associated with conservative causes and 6 with liberal. But somehow you are contending that conservatives were singled out.

 

In fact, the three that were denied tax-exempt status were liberal organizations

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/21/business/advocacy-groups-denied-tax-exempt-status-are-named.html?_r=1

Lost in the IRS stuff is that Political Action Commitees/ Super PACs are new to our election system. They are born out of the Citizens United ruling. It only makes sense the IRS would investigate new forms of multi million dollar political funds. They looked at both liberal and conservative ones. Nothing controversial about it in my opinion.

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Lost in the IRS stuff is that Political Action Commitees/ Super PACs are new to our election system. They are born out of the Citizens United ruling. It only makes sense the IRS would investigate new forms of multi million dollar political funds. They looked at both liberal and conservative ones. Nothing controversial about it in my opinion.

 

 

This was a different case, though. Tax-exempt organizations that are not supposed to get more than minimally involved in politics. People got hung up on the fact that they started with "Tea Party" for additional scrutiny, because that's the name of a political movement, and ignore that they rapidly expanded. Why ruin a perfectly good conspiracy theory with facts?

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Engaging in overt (and unconstitutional) partisan attacks on Republicans:

 

Source: http://www.wsj.com/articles/supreme-court-throws-out-corruption-conviction-of-ex-virginia-gov-bob-mcdonnell-1467038338

 

What makes this one worse is the hypocrisy of it.

It's a case of corruption against former governor McDonnell. How is that a partisan attack by Obama? It's the DoJ, and he took the money and favors, and there was enough evidence to convict him. The problem was apparently with how the judge framed the instructions to the jury. (A judge appointed by Reagan, BTW) Oh, and the governor was no longer in office when the case was brought.

 

So what all does this have to do with Obama?

 

There is an article that has evidence that Obama has taken money for appointments before, implicating him in direct corruption:

 

Source: http://nypost.com/2016/07/24/mogul-accidently-gave-100k-to-group-run-by-obamas-brother/

Oh, please. The donation was made after the appointment, the man said it was not solicited, and perhaps you can tell me what legislative, judicial or executive power a trustee for the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts holds?

 

(All of the living first ladies are honorary chairs. So does that make their husbands corrupt, too?)

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There are legitimate concerns regarding the Obama administration. They include, NSA surveilance, deportations, benefiting from citizens united, and the drone program. Maybe if people on both sides could focus on legitimate concerns, and not dismissing legitimate concerns, there could be an honest discussion regarding politics. I'm finding it difficult to discuss politics here because both sides are so extreme, either explaining everything away as normal, or presenting trumped up garbage regarding things that are a stretch.

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As it has been referenced in this thread, for everyone's reading pleasure, the Investigator General's report on the IRS controversy:

 

https://www.treasury.gov/tigta/auditreports/2013reports/201310053fr.pdf

 

Additionally, a decision in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals relevant to the case:

 

http://www.opn.ca6.uscourts.gov/opinions.pdf/16a0069p-06.pdf

 

This is one place where I think the Obama administration has severely overreached. People are reacting to this case with good reason - the IRS is an important organization with the full power to ruin any person or business, so any even slightly substantiated allegation that the IRS is being partial should be investigated fully and transparently. Here, the IRS seems to be stonewalling at every opportunity - that's not just my opinion, that's the opinion of the Court. I'd suggest that Obama should direct the IRS to give whatever information is necessary.

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As it has been referenced in this thread, for everyone's reading pleasure, the Investigator General's report on the IRS controversy:

 

https://www.treasury.gov/tigta/auditreports/2013reports/201310053fr.pdf

 

 

 

See footnote 16. "We did not review the use of other named organizations on the BOLO listing to determine if their use was appropriate. "

 

So this can't be used to show that this was used in a biased fashion. All you can conclude is that using keywords is not a proper strategy for filtering for potential political activity. Because they missed organizations that should have been flagged.

 

"We determined that two (2 percent) of 94 approved applications had indications of significant political campaign intervention and should have been forwarded to the team of specialists.21

Based on our statistical sample, we project an estimated 44 merit closure applications were not appropriately identified as potential political cases during this time period.22 "

 

 

Also, I didn't see any indication that this was directed by the president, so in the context of this discussion, it's moot.

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There are legitimate concerns regarding the Obama administration. They include, NSA surveilance, deportations, benefiting from citizens united, and the drone program. Maybe if people on both sides could focus on legitimate concerns, and not dismissing legitimate concerns, there could be an honest discussion regarding politics. I'm finding it difficult to discuss politics here because both sides are so extreme, either explaining everything away as normal, or presenting trumped up garbage regarding things that are a stretch.

Read an intresting example online the other day and it went something like this:

 

Eve - Obama's Affordable care act has many issues that must be addressed and is arguably a failure, the collateral damage from Obama's drone attacks may be war crimes, and our civil liberties are haven't been protected.

 

Adam - Plus Obama is a Muslim.

 

Eve - No, he isn't Muslim.

 

Adam - He wasn't even born in this country.

 

Eve - No, he was born in this country

 

Adam - He wants to take everyones guns.

 

Eve - No, heisn't trying to take everyones guns.

 

Adama - All you do is defend Obama. This conversation is going no where.

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http://www.opn.ca6.uscourts.gov/opinions.pdf/16a0069p-06.pdf

 

This is one place where I think the Obama administration has severely overreached. People are reacting to this case with good reason - the IRS is an important organization with the full power to ruin any person or business, so any even slightly substantiated allegation that the IRS is being partial should be investigated fully and transparently. Here, the IRS seems to be stonewalling at every opportunity - that's not just my opinion, that's the opinion of the Court. I'd suggest that Obama should direct the IRS to give whatever information is necessary.

 

 

A problem here is that you are equating the actions of career civil servants with "the Obama administration". The bulk of the IRS employees are not appointed by any administration. They are not involved in policy whatsoever. They are there before any given president takes office and stay after the president leaves (other than normal attrition and hiring).

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There are legitimate concerns regarding the Obama administration. They include, NSA surveilance, deportations, benefiting from citizens united, and the drone program. Maybe if people on both sides could focus on legitimate concerns, and not dismissing legitimate concerns, there could be an honest discussion regarding politics. I'm finding it difficult to discuss politics here because both sides are so extreme, either explaining everything away as normal, or presenting trumped up garbage regarding things that are a stretch.

 

I fully understand your concerns, and there has been a lot of "trumped up garbage" presented in the OP. But so far, I don't see anyone "dismissing legitimate concerns". This objection isn't happening here, not the way you're describing. Concerns based on assumptions and misinformation are being corrected, and so far nobody is saying it's all "normal".

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There are legitimate concerns regarding the Obama administration. They include, NSA surveilance, deportations, benefiting from citizens united, and the drone program. Maybe if people on both sides could focus on legitimate concerns, and not dismissing legitimate concerns, there could be an honest discussion regarding politics. I'm finding it difficult to discuss politics here because both sides are so extreme, either explaining everything away as normal, or presenting trumped up garbage regarding things that are a stretch.

 

 

It's not that things are normal, per se, it's that one is singling out one administration for criticism of something that happened under another, too, or aiming criticism at the administration for things beyond its control, or just being wrong about the criticism. NSA surveillance and use of drones did not start in 2009. Regarding the latter, Obama has invited congress to formulate laws that would restrict their use. Have they acted? Citizens United was a supreme court decision, and any action to change laws relating to it requires congress to act. Obama has deported more people than any other president. Is that the concern you are talking about?

 

And, of course, what started all of this was the hyperbole that Obama is routinely acting outside the scope of the constitution, which is a different kettle of fish than having concerns about policies and actions, and things that could be fixed within (and using) the system if only elected officials were interested in fixing them.

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It's not that things are normal, per se, it's that one is singling out one administration for criticism of something that happened under another, too, or aiming criticism at the administration for things beyond its control, or just being wrong about the criticism. NSA surveillance and use of drones did not start in 2009. Regarding the latter, Obama has invited congress to formulate laws that would restrict their use. Have they acted? Citizens United was a supreme court decision, and any action to change laws relating to it requires congress to act. Obama has deported more people than any other president. Is that the concern you are talking about?

Good points. Some argue that for Obama speak out against Citizens United while also benefiting from it on the campaign trail is hypcritical. In my opinion that is not a fair criticism because one must follow the rules of a game till such time those rules change. He has appointed the type of judges and campaigned for the type of politicians who might do something about those rules and that is the limit of his influence on the matter. On his drone use I feel there is some fair criticism however many of his alternatives are arguably worse. If the attitude is more diplomacy and less drones I am for that. If it is more troops on the ground and less drone I need many more details.

 

Presidents don't start with clean slates. The come into office with an already full operational system in place. Presidents also aren't kings. The executive branch is merely one of 3 branches. So any criticism that attempt to blame a president for not catching all the ghosts which already exists in the machine is flawed from the start in my opinion. There are many constraints which prohibit a president from making broad sweeping changes alone written into the constitution.

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Read an intresting example online the other day and it went something like this:

 

Eve - Obama's Affordable care act has many issues that must be addressed and is arguably a failure, the collateral damage from Obama's drone attacks may be war crimes, and our civil liberties are haven't been protected.

 

Adam - Plus Obama is a Muslim.

 

Eve - No, he isn't Muslim.

 

Adam - He wasn't even born in this country.

 

Eve - No, he was born in this country

 

Adam - He wants to take everyones guns.

 

Eve - No, heisn't trying to take everyones guns.

 

Adama - All you do is defend Obama. This conversation is going no where.

I gave you a positive here. I hope you aren't saying I'm presenting bs criticisms, but that the defence against bs can be seen as apologetics. My point is that it does go both ways, paricularily in the Clinton defense, separate from this topic.

 

While I agree Obama did some great things, he also did some pretty damaging things.

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A problem here is that you are equating the actions of career civil servants with "the Obama administration". The bulk of the IRS employees are not appointed by any administration. They are not involved in policy whatsoever. They are there before any given president takes office and stay after the president leaves (other than normal attrition and hiring).

The action I'm talking about is one that I believe could be directed by Obama - simply stop stonewalling in this lawsuit and disclose relevant information. I could be wrong, but I think the President can at least give directives for litigation strategy by executive agencies.

Edited by uncool
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That's the problem with politics...

You don't have to be great ( or even good ),

You just have to be better than the opposition.

 

So who would you rather have had as president ?

( although I do like J. McCain )

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