The Republicans in the last few decades have come to the conclusion that they are so obviously right, and the Democrats so obviously wrong, that when Democrats win a presidential election, there must have been something illegitimate about it. The GOP has only managed to break 50 percent once in 24 years of presidential elections – Bush managed a piddly 50.7 percent as a wartime incumbent against a weak opponent – but they still believe that the only way a Democrat could reach the Oval Office is by some evil miscarriage.
So now they are following the same formula as in the Clinton era: try to de-legitimize Obama, and then block everything he tries to pass, and then try to stop his reelection, and then as a last resort, start talking up impeachment. The problem is that Obama’s administration has been extraordinarily scandal-free, one of the most honest administrations in a century.
The Republicans are fishing around for dirty information about Obama’s campaign financing, with no results. They are trying to peddle the idea that Obama has made the economy worse, which the American electorate knows is nonsense: Obama keeps drafting proposals to create jobs and Republicans keep trying to block them for partisan political reasons. And despite that Obama managed to create five million private-sector jobs.
They are trying to raise a lynch mob regarding Obama actions which have already been declared legal in court, such as Obamacare and the individual mandate, and actions which were not only legal but were pursued by Bush and other Republican presidents: recess appointments, executive orders, imprisoning prisoners of war, using weapons to flush out Mexican drug dealers, appointing issue “czars”, and suggesting that the Constitution be altered.
And of course they are trying to breathe new life into conspiracies that have been debunked and laughed out of town, such as voter fraud and ACORN, Obama’s birth certificate, Solyndra, Obama giving “amnesty” to immigrants, Obama establishing an electricity monopoly, Obama rigging the auto bailout in favor of the unions, Obama violating the War Powers act in Libya, a dozen conspiracies regarding Dodd-Frank, and of course Obama stopping help from getting to the Benghazi consulate and lying about it. All of which have been proven untrue, here in the real world.
None of this has any basis in reality. But the fascinating thing is that some of the people yammering about Obama’s non-existent crimes are the same people who eagerly helped cover up the very real crimes of Obama’s predecessor. These rightwing loons cheered as George Bush violated Article I of the Constitution by violating Congress’s prerogatives, by lying to them to get us into a war, blackmailing them into funding unnecessary troop deployments by threatening to put the troops in danger, defying subpoenas, and using illegal signing statements and administrative actions.
These rightwing cheerleaders applauded as Bush committed endless violations of Article II, perverting the executive branch into a partisan political weapon, illegally prosecuting Democratic politicians and firing Democratic attorneys, directing government offices to spread dishonest political propaganda, failing to uphold Article II responsibilities by keeping or financial system safe or enforcing product safety laws, sending thugs to disrupt officials from counting votes while screaming “don’t count the votes!”, and trying to convert the Vice Presidency into a fourth branch of government with no oversight.
They turned a blind eye as Bush repeatedly trampled over Article III by violating the prerogatives of the courts, by defying orders to preserve emails and concealing evidence. Bush’s violations of the Bill of Rights include illegal spying and secret prisons and torture against the innocent, and lying about it all.
And of course they ignored the garden-variety violations of federal law and other high crimes and misdemeanors: Bush killed thousands of innocent people in the Middle East, allowed other terrorists to destroy the World Trade Center without holding them accountable, turned a blind eye as Iran and Korea built the nuclear weapons which could destroy our cities, inflicted so much damage on our military that PTSD and suicide are skyrocketing, made America hated around the world, endangered a CIA employee and intelligence operations by exposing the employee’s identity, made it easier for aliens to enter the country across the Mexican border and through our ports, and put thousands at risk of disease and death after Katrina.