If you can take anything away from yesterday's vote, it should be that the office of President has very little clout without the backing of Congress. While it showcases democracy in action, it also emphasises that democracy doesn't always make sense or work efficiently. If a President can't get a gun control bill passed in this climate, he is basically powerless. It's going to be a very long 3 years, my friends.
The United States government was designed specifically so that the President would have very limited powers. He's not supposed to be able to override Congress or bully them into complying with his wishes. Although he's the figurehead of state he's just another elected official like the members of Congress. And if people choose to fill Congress with obstreperous ideologues who take their marching orders from ALEC and the NRA, they have every right to do so, but they have to live with the consequences. It's not up to Obama to make everything right.
But you have to learn how to crack heads together. Obama is conciliatory by nature.
Obama was hardly conciliatory on this issue R2. The problem is that the NRA has gone over the edge - at one point it was in favor of more background checks but now won't budge on anything in order to prove its power.
That and the Senate had all the backbone of a bowl of Jello.
If anything, this is another reason why there should be mandatory term limits on all elected positions: national, state, and local. It's amazing the kind of leadership and guts you'll get when politicians don't continually worry about being re-elected.
90% of the people support this. A Representative Republic is supposed to represent the people. They failed 90% of us.
Those who voted against it should be recalled.
Again.... this is what you get from staying at home in 2010. We told you. We begged you. We pleaded with you. You didn't listen. You didn't vote. This is the result. Don't go around yelling lame duck. You did this.
Let's see if people get out and vote in 2014. The NRA won this one, against the will of the American people. Except the American people do not get out and use their power. Less than a third of elibible voters below age 30 vote today- and less than half of the general population. In my generation (baby boom) it was at about 80%. Ask yourself what has happened?
Congress is more conservative than the country, and even more important is the K Street system which is more powerful than the electorate. The NRA can block the re-election of Senators and Congressmen basically- as well as get their people elected. Special interests in 2013 trump the electorate on more issues than just gun control- that is an apathetic electorate, particularly among the young. It really is peculiar. In Europe the young vote- not here.
I wonder how many young posters here who rale away about Obama get out and vote in all elections? The numbers say a minority of you do. Thus we get what we deserve.
R6, keep the blame on the Republicans where it belongs.
And in just over a year we can turn Republicans out en masse, allowing us to potentially have two years of progress.
The election of 2014 began yesterday.
[quote]If you can take anything away from yesterday's vote, it should be that the office of President has very little clout without the backing of Congress.
It took yesterday's vote for you to realize that? Wait until you learn about the THIRD branch of government, what we call the Supreme Court.
I'm R6 from "Stop fucking blaming Reid and Obama, and VOTE THE GODDAMNED REPUBLICAN MORONS OUT!"
Unlike some claiming otherwise, I don't believe the president is all that limited. As destructive as George W. Bush was -- and that we'll feel the impact of his presidency at least for the remainder of this decade -- he did get a lot of what he intended. And the Democrats helped him.
Most of this is about [italic]policies[/italic]. The Democratic party has used and abused their base -- liberals -- and it's no wonder his beginning point on negotiations is consistently center-right. And it's interesting how people excuse him for it as we are to still believe he's "a bad poker player."
Now that this gun background-checks bill failed, thanks in part to the Senate Democrats not reforming the filibuster rules ("60"), I look to seeing social security [cuts] as the next example of "betrayal" and failure. That there will be enough Senate Democrats who will get on board for [italic]that[/italic].
Bush would have gotten it through. He wouldn't have been intimidated by the filibuster threat.
Nor would have been concerned with what Congress wanted. Hell, he would have tacked it onto another bill as a "Signing Statement."
Our president is a pussy, and that's deliberate.
[quote]As destructive as George W. Bush was -- and that we'll feel the impact of his presidency at least for the remainder of this decade -- he did get a lot of what he intended.
He had a very cooperative congress for SIX YEARS, idiot.
Obama has faced unprecidented abuse of the filibuster and unprecidented obstructionism from the entire Republican party.
Why do you so enjoy comparing apples to oranges?
You're just wrong. Cluelessly so in fact.
You're putting all the blame on all the wrong people. The REPUBLICANS are to blame for filibustering. Not Reid or Obama.
What made them "cooperative" dumbass? Bush made the cooperative.
I don't think that will matter.
The Democrats are just playing a role that makes them [italic]appear[/italic] to be pussies. They made the decision, in the early-1980s, to compete with Republicans for corporate cash. That naturally changed their approach to governing. That's why so many of them may as well be Republicans. That's why the centrists, corporatists, Blue Dogs, et al.
Bush did not have a supermajority or Republicans in the Senate. The House doesn't call for [italic]that[/italic]. But the Senate Democrats got on board with the Senate Republicans. Certinly enough to give us the war in Iraq, including 2004 presidential nominee John Kerry of Massachusetts and 2008 contender Hillary Clinton of New York.
What r1 said
[quote]What made them "cooperative" dumbass? Bush made the cooperative.
This is the stupidest post in this thread.
The Republican Party fell in line behind the Republican President and defended him at every turn. Bush didnt' "make" them do anything.
You don't have the slightest grasp of reality or history.
[quote]Bush did not have a supermajority or Republicans in the Senate.
Democrats also didn't decide to abuse the filibuster so that every vote required 60 'yes' votes to even be held. What the GOP is doing is UNPRECIDENTED IN HISTORY. What part of that do you not understand?
You don't understand Republicans R16 if you think they weren't made to what they did.
Do you think Karl Rove sat around on his ass waiting for them to "fall in line"? I'll wager most of them had their lives threatened over quite trivial assertions of independence.
[quote]Do you think Karl Rove sat around on his ass waiting for them to "fall in line"?
You don't understand Republicans. He didn't have to wait around. Republicans are authoritarian. They had their white leader and they fell in line. It's their nature.
"But you have to learn how to crack heads together. Obama is conciliatory by nature."
When Obama is conciliatory, he is faulted for not being commandeering. When he is commandeering, he is faulted for not being conciliatory.
In this instance, he was conciliatory, finding what should have been common ground and seeking to get it past, it was hardly an activist approach to the problem, and he failed.
Had he taken a harder stance, demanding an assault weapon ban, or even stronger background check legislation, he would have also failed. And he would have been faulted for cracking heads together and not getting anything accomplished.
The fault is not with Obama, it's with the huge volume of milquetoast knuckleheads in Congress. We can only pray that in this instance, they might have made too big a blunder and will get fucked for it.
Only I wouldn't say 'milquetoast' ... the problem is with corrupt Republicans in Congress.
Well you'd be wrong R19.
No, R22, I'm not. Karl Rove (who was never President you notice... so again, you're blaiming Obama for not being Karl Rove? Really?) may have knocked some heads on some votes, but that's not the point. Republicans controlled everything. And they were all "on the same team". They were gloating about the win and drunk with their power.
Bush did NOT have to fight his own party in the least. Bush did NOT have to be conciliatory to the Democrats. At all.
You're comparing apples and oranges.
The conservative nature is authoritarian... followers following leaders, a believe in hierarchy not equality. Look at all the "unanimous" party line votes the GOP has given. They march in jack-booted lock-step. This is just a fact.
When the Democrats didn't all get on board for the public option...
Why do you suppose President Obama had Bill Clinton go to Arkansas, in 2010, to save U.S. Sen. Blanche Lincoln (who nearly lost her renomination bid to Lt. Gov. Bill Halter)?
Lincoln was opposed to the public option.
President Obama's 2008 election campaign, for a healthcare bill, included the public option.
Why do you suppose the Democratic party was so adamant that Lincoln win re-nomination -- when it was clear she was going to become unseated with the general election. (And she did become unseated, by Republican challenger and then-congressman John Boozman, and she failed to nab 40 percent of the vote after winning in the midterm of 1998 with 55 percent and in 2004 with 56 percent.)
Do you know why it was important that Blanche Lincoln get re-nominated in 2010?
Respectfully disagree, r20.
With this issue Obama had the wind at his back. The majority of Americans want more stringent gun legislation. The President should have taken his cue from LBJ, who "cracked heads" to get the Civil Rights Act passed in 1964. But as usual, even when he has the GOP in a corner, he wants to make nice and play conciliatory patty-cake. If he had given the impression of a passionate, progressive ball-buster - and even if he still lost - he would have increased his standing with Americans while making the GOP (and all of Congress) look even slimer and beholden to the NRA than than usual.
At times I think "Milquetoast" should be Obama's middle name.
Lame and weak.
Yeah, because Obama doesn't have an "Angry Black Man" stereotype to worry about his entire life.
Yes, presidents can barely affect anything.
Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts, and Samuel Alito.