Steve's Blog

The Memo; DACA; and Another Shutdown?

I’m going to try to cover three important matters this week, in what I hope will be a clear, concise, comprehensive, and maybe even interesting manner. Of course you’ll be the judge of that. Here goes.

First, the infamous memo released last Friday by the House Intelligence Committee. I had read it several weeks ago, but since it was classified “top secret”, I couldn’t talk about it. (That didn’t stop some Members of Congress from yapping pretty openly about it on various political talk shows.)

Anyway, now that the Intelligence Committee voted to make the memo public, and the White House subsequently declassified the memo, I can now talk about it. Here’s my analysis of what the memo tells us that matters. In the last election, Hillary Clinton’s campaign, and the Democratic National Committee, paid a foreign spy, to do opposition research on Donald Trump. This person compiled a dossier, probably with help from the Russians, containing what even James Comey described as “salacious and unverified” information. That dossier, along with press reports that came directly from the dossier itself, were used by the Obama FBI and Justice Department, to obtain a FISA warrant, to spy on an American citizen. The FISA court was kept in the dark that it was, in essence, the Clinton campaign paying for opposition research to use against the opposition, the Trump campaign.

In my view, this amounts to the weaponization of the FBI and the Justice Department by the Obama Administration and its ally, the Clinton campaign, against their opposition, the Trump campaign and Trump Administration. It reminds me a lot of the weaponization of the IRS under Lois Lerner, when the Obama Administration IRS targeted conservative groups to keep them busy defending themselves against government attacks, and therefore made them ineffective in trying to unseat Obama in 2012. This should never happen. But it has.

Okay, second issue – DACA. President Obama had famously told illegal immigrants: “I am not king. I can’t do these things just by myself. I can’t just bypass Congress and change immigration law myself… that’s not how a democracy works.” Then he did exactly that, with DACA, by executive order.

President Trump then suspended DACA for six months, asking that Congress pass legislation by March 5th. The President recently put forward his own plan, one far more generous even than DACA. He would triple the number of people who could stay under DACA and include a pathway to citizenship. In return, the President wants his wall, an end to chain migration, and an end to the visa lottery program.

The Democrats’ response to the President’s offer? “No – and you’re a racist.” Why have the Democrats given President Trump the back of their collective hand – to an offer that many conservatives believe is far too generous in the first place? Because, Congressional Democrats don’t really want to find a solution to the problem – they want the issue. They want to paint Republicans, and President Trump, as uncaring, and mean-spirited, and well, as racists. It’s cynical, and it’s hypocritical, and – it might just work.

Finally, issue three – will the government shut down again this week? In my view – no. Why? Because for once, Democrats got the blame for the last shutdown. The Schumer Shutdown really was his fault, as well as the fault of his Democrat cohorts. Congressional Democrats had been presented with a spending package that had in it pretty much all the things that they wanted, including children’s healthcare (CHIP) and they voted against it anyway, because they demanded that DACA be added to the mix.

Republicans didn’t bite; Democrats shut the government down; and Democrats blinked pretty quickly. The government re-opened, and I can’t imagine Democrats are going to want to go through that again. So I predict, no shutdown this week.

Anyway, that’s the way I see it. Let me know what you think.

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