The Ten Hardline Conservatives Pulling the Strings of the GOP Shutdown

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Rep. Tom Graves, R-Ga., center, speaks at a news conference with conservative Congressional Republicans who persuaded the House leadership to include defunding the Affordable Care Act in legislation to prevent a government shutdown at the end of the month, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013. From left to right are Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., Rep. Mark Meadows, R-NC, Rep. Tom Graves, R-Ga., Rep. Matt Salmon, R-Ariz., Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA), center, speaks at a news conference with conservative Congressional Republicans who persuaded the House leadership to include defunding the Affordable Care Act in legislation to prevent a government shutdown, at the Capitol in September. From left to right are Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA), Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT). (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Much of the coverage of the government showdown has focused on a relatively small group of hardline conservatives within the Republican caucus who have backed their party’s leaders into a fight they didn’t want.

As Ryan Lizza noted in The New Yorker, these lawmakers mostly represent very safe, heavily Republican and disproportionately white districts that don’t look much like the rest of the country. Many of those on the front lines are recent arrivals to Capitol Hill, and they’re pushing a leadership they see as having been too willing to compromise with Democrats in the past.

It’s an important angle. Yet it also obscures what should be an obvious question: Since when do freshmen senators or one- or two-term reps push their congressional leadership around? Historically, it’s been the reverse. And since when does a newcomer to the Senate such as Ted Cruz (R-TX) have the right to tell House Republicans what to do? If there’s only a relatively small group of lawmakers who think defunding the law is a dandy idea, why has every budget resolution with such a provision won more than 200 Republican votes in the House of Representatives during the showdown? Why is this supposedly silent majority of Republicans so docile? Why don’t they push back?

illustrations by Joe Fournier

View Interactive: Who's pulling the strings? Illustrations by Joe Fournier

The answer lies in the clout wielded by an extensive web of non-governmental conservative groups supported by mountains of dark money. Those groups see the Affordable Care Act as an existential threat to their worldview and their party and have waged a multipronged campaign to kill it in its cradle. Theirs is the ultimate inside/ outside strategy: They fund primary challenges from the right by upstart candidates against incumbents they view as insufficiently pure. When those true believers get into office, these groups promote them relentlessly to the party’s activist base – filling their re-election coffers with donations by portraying them as courageous mavericks fighting against ossified “RINOS” (Republicans in Name Only). They mount “public education” campaigns and buy ad blitzes, and they coordinate messaging among friendly voices within the conservative media.

According to a report by Sheryl Gay Stolberg and Mike McIntire in The New York Times, a coalition of these groups has been plotting a budget crisis to shut down Obamacare for months.

Shortly after President Obama started his second term, a loose-knit coalition of conservative activists led by former Attorney General Edwin Meese III gathered in the capital to plot strategy. Their push to repeal Mr. Obama’s health care law was going nowhere, and they desperately needed a new plan.

Out of that session, held one morning in a location the members insist on keeping secret, came a little-noticed “blueprint to defunding Obamacare,” signed by Mr. Meese and leaders of more than three dozen conservative groups.

It articulated a take-no-prisoners legislative strategy that had long percolated in conservative circles: that Republicans could derail the health care overhaul if conservative lawmakers were willing to push fellow Republicans — including their cautious leaders — into cutting off financing for the entire federal government.

With a broad, well-funded campaign, these groups have effectively shifted the balance of power in conservative Washington away from Republican leaders on the Hill and onto a cadre of true believers who will go to any length to destroy a modest set of health care reforms that, just 20 years ago, the very same conservative movement was itself advancing.

So just looking at the rank-and-file members of the “suicide caucus” isn’t enough – it’s like focusing on the marionette rather than the puppet-master.

Check out our interactive feature to meet some of the key people pulling the strings.

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  • Hans Meyer

    The Ten Hardline Conservatives Pulling the Strings of the GOP Shutdown

    It could also be called The Ten People Responsible For The Destruction Of America.

    Every American should know who these people are, and what they’re doing to our great country.

  • Anonymous

    They are just sleeping, waiting …Remember the abortion clinic bombings of past. The rhetoric by the same politicians fuel the fire of the radical right.

  • Danny Hatch

    Ross, I agree, but I think it is much more sinister than even that. This is bringing ideology into the discussion of hate, murder of Children, hopeless homeless people that can’t help it, the working poor, the elderly, and every minority group that exists. I am a Red Letter Christian and I don’t see anything that Christ said that has one thing to do with any of this. This is so radical that even some of the money could be pulled for the Tea Party faction by haters like the Koch Brothers because it could hurt their business soon. This country needs to wake up and stop this. Start voting. One other thing, they may so radical that you might have the “Values Party”, the Republican Party, and the Democratic Party. That will put an end to this straight away.
    Danny

  • michele

    “red letter Christian!” Thanks. I am too, but i never knew what to call it.

  • Muncie Voice

    We’ve been trying to educate the folks in Indiana and the Midwest about this, but the problem is quite frankly, the media.

    Governor Mike Pence started attacking Hoosiers right to have access to health
    insurance before he even took office. He refused to setup a health exchange, and now our AG is suing to federal government to remove subsidies from Hoosiers making up to 400% of poverty line in an attempt to make Indiana even more business friendly than it currently enjoys.

    Do you see anything in the Gannett owned newspapers which rule Indiana? How about Fox news?

    Nope.

    The hard right has done their homework on the demographics of listeners/viewer/readers and cater to their views on white supremacy, racial prejudice, bigotry, hatred, backward thinking, etc.

    Based on Gallup polls, it must be around half of those who declare themselves as GOP, or 14% of registered voters.

    Corporate owned media which accounts for 80% of all media in this country will not hold them accountable since it doesn’t serve their interests. Fox viewers consider anything left of their beloved Fox to be liberal, so they will never have an open mind to objective truth.

    The only hope is to point out to the Christian right, who are caught up in the U.S. terrorist attacks by the American Taliban, is their leaders are devotees of Ayn Rand – an atheist who made a religion of self-centeredness having a pure hatred toward altruistic movements, or the antithesis of Christianity.

    The GOP will have to hold these extremists accountable for what has happened to their party and expose the extremists. It will require leadership and sacrifice, like maybe Boehner losing his position, but it’s imperative that changes must come from inside existing GOP leadership – starting with the Chairman of RNC.

  • Steve

    How does this activity fail to meet the definition of seditious conspiracy? Why aren’t these folks already in jail?

    http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/2384

  • Joanne Lindsley

    I respect nearly everyone on CNN, but if Newt Gingrich continues on “Cross Fire” my time watching it will be less. There are some very intelligent people out there who could easily make it a much more enlightening show. When it comes on we turn off CNN.

  • Lee Brown

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I change channels whenever Newt appears.

  • No Name

    Exactly! How can your impartially comment on the problem when YOU and your poor politics are part of it?

  • Doretha Reeves

    Collusion.

  • RoseMariWaterlow

    I have always said that the real key to change is in limiting campaign funding so that the average Joe and Jane who truly wants to serve the country and its people has a chance to make it to a seat in congress. As long as the only people that can get into office are rich people backed by rich companies who promise to make the candidate richer while pushing their agendas forward are the only ones who can get elected, the destruction of America will continue. There is nothing wrong with being wealthy, but there is definitely something wrong with using it to suppress and enslave others. Unfortunately, the media is now as corrupt as the government; puppets to puppet masters. The truth has very little hope of making it to the masses when the messages are selective and skewed so deliberately. Together with this extremist Tea Party, this cocktail of greed is breeding hopelessness in the common man while the bullies gain power. It doesn’t have to be this way. We The People CAN still make a difference but it will take people who genuinely care about this country to stand united and inform and expose truths such as those stated in this article. I think the extremists should have their pictures posted a la “Most Wanted” posters on every webpage, Post Office, TV Channel, etc. They are the worst kind of criminals and should be treated as such. These people are far more destructive to this country than any terrorist group.

  • Steve

    In Seven Days in May, the conspiracy was secret, and the tacit assumption was that it would end when exposed because the nation would be appalled. In the present situation, it’s right out in the open and the nation, for the most part, seems not to care.

  • Emerald Griffin

    I looked into this, and it appears that this law was enacted in the late 1700s (1798) and expired in the early 19th century (1801). The citation on the Cornell website is a fragment of the actual bill, and many constitutional scholars agree that today this law would be deemed unconstitutional. While, on the one hand, I’d love to see these insurgent Republicans jailed, on the other hand it’s probably better that we don’t jail dissenters to American policy. American policy has seen its ups and downs, and in this age it is going through a dark period. Hopefully we get through this era and it’s legacy will be only an interesting chapter in American history books–similar to the McCarthy witch hunts–and Americans in future generations will heed its lessons.

  • Leslie Todd

    Its going back to the way it was when George Washington was voted in to office , only 200 people voted because they were property owners .

  • Leslie Todd

    We didn’t let them do anything ……. they bogard their way around in politics thanks to W.Bush AND HIS RUNAWAY DICTATORSHIP .

  • Emerald Griffin

    This is something that, ultimately, the Republican Party is going to have to work out. A small faction is coercing the body of the party into wild contortions. I suspect that the phenomenon has to do with a little discussed issue called “Bush denial.” The entire party has had to run for office against Bush. They don’t want to talk about Bush, much less acknowledge their errors and take responsibility for Bush. Discussion of Bush has been taken off the table–it’s Obama’s economy and those wars became Obama’s wars after the arbitrarily-determined ninety days. There needs to be an intervention. There needs to be some admissions and acceptance of culpability. Lessons need to be learned. They’re going to have to do some house cleaning and cast the Tea Party off into the wilderness. If the Republican party doesn’t redeem itself it is either doomed by irrelevancy or doomed by its mounting grotesqueness.

  • Matilda Gregory

    I feel the same way about Rush Limbaugh.

  • Emerald Griffin

    It’s going to take some hard work by people like you and me.

  • Anonymous

    The root cause of this shutdown problem is the Kings in The Supreme Court and the creation of their Citizens United Law that they installed. They ordained that Corporations would now become “People” and that their vast corporate money would become their “Speech”. Thus, they installed their next in line who I call the “Counselors of State” and I refer to as the “Plutocrats”

    The Plutocrats then installed a Cabinet to distribute their vast sums of money,
    that was supplied and furnished by the “Counselors of State”, to buy Politicians, who I call the “Subsidiary”, who in turn would do their Corporate Bidding. The
    “Cabinet Members” are The Heritage Active Group, Freedomworks, The Affordable Care Act and The Club For Growth.

    The “Counselors of State” had an enormous fear of a rising up and threat to their kingdom of their medically insured, who I refer to as the “Tortured Insured”. This threat was called “Obamacare”. They were and are petrified of it! They knew that very early on in Obamacare that they would lose 7 million of their “Tortured Subscribers”. So, in turn they instructed the “Cabinet” to write “Blueprint Letters and Orders to Defund Obamacare” and send them to the “Subsidiary”. The Koch Brothers alone spent $200 million alone for this “Defunding Campaign”. The “Subsidiary” including the “Tea Jerkers” said yes to their “Owners” and that they would do everything they could to defund Obamacare including a “Government Shutdown”. The “Subsidiaries” motivation to do what their masters want, of course, is being primaried by their “Owners” the “Counselors of State”.

    The rest of this story we are all living right now. “The Shutdown”. Look at the number of people who are suffering without incomes, medical treatment, emergencies or settlements because of this. And, Judge Scalia, the “Intellectual Fruad” wrongfully sits on that bench in the Supreme Court, smiling over his good work. There you have it. The Supreme Court. They and they alone are the architects of this shutdown problem.

  • Douglas Baker

    Have to ask who really benefits from destroying faith and trust in the United States of America’s ability to be economically viable as a government and why would this invisible behind these string pullers hang faith in America?

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Really? 5 years and no budget is somehow the minority’s fault? 8 BI-PARTISAN budgets sitting on Reids desk where he forbids a vote on them is someone else’s fault? How about Obama’s own words, “I will not negotiate”-these words having been uttered by he, Reid and Pelosi for those 5 years. And how about Obama’s bully words finally saying that he is indeed wanting to see regular folks suffer and continue suffering. The gross dishonesty is appalling and finally crippling this nation. At your core mr. Moyers is a deep dishonesty that props up these bizarre perversions of truth-kinda like mushroom clouds and flowers.Here is a quote from obama to think about. Only a malicious bully would have said something like this:

    CBS’ Mark Knoller asked Obama if he was “tempted” to sign the numerous funding bills passed by the GOP-led House intended to alleviate the pain of the shutdown.

    Republicans have passed bills that would reopen parks, fund cancer trials for children at the NIH, and to keep FEMA and the FDA going through this partial shutdown, Goldberg added, but the White House — now being called the #SpiteHouse on Twitter — has threatened to veto those bills.

    “Of course I’m tempted” to sign those bills, Obama told Knoller. “But here’s the problem. What you’ve seen are bills that come up wherever Republicans are feeling political pressure, they put a bill forward. And if there’s no political heat, if there’s no television story on it, then nothing happens.”

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Treason to want democracy to work? Treason to protect individual rights and freedoms? Are you mad? Do you think it is moral to create the kind of debt our children and grandchildren will be saddled with and never see the benefit of? What do yo want? A dictatorship? That is exactly what you are being pushed towards and you will go willingly because the system has bee nso perverted and undermined-and you voted for it.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    With what money-our childrens?

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Out of control debt and economic growth of .09 is what is killing our viability. This is a Carter redux of epic proportions and people don’t seem to learn from history as we march towards failure-ensured socialism.

  • Kyle W

    They lost the vote on the Affordable Healthcare Act and are responding by dragging their feet and our country through needless hardship. The candidates are running as anti government and true to their word are proving worthless as legislators.

  • Anonymous

    wolf – pac dot com?

  • Anonymous

    Indeed, you must own 30 tv stations 5 newspapers and 100 oil fields to vote :)

  • Brandon Magoon

    The ACA was passed after the Democrats lost the House. They were trying to overturn the results of an election. More to the point a basic understanding of math and human nature would tell you that the scheme won’t work.

  • Brandon Magoon

    The Republicans didn’t “shut down” the government, the Democrats did. Obama decided what would be closed and what wouldn’t be paid for. There are many things you can criticize the Republicans for but this isn’t one of them.

  • Brandon Magoon

    Of course it’s grassroots. You people are funny.

  • Brandon Magoon

    Single payer here would be a disaster just like every where else and Obamacare is going to result in fewer people having insurance. MATH!

  • Enraged

    The Republicans are the only ones at fault concerning the government shut down. They have been more disrespectful to our President than any other in history and when they disrespect him, they disrespect those who support him. The gerrymandering of districts, schemes, secret meetings and lies show that Republicans will go to any lengths to achieve their own personal gain and selfish ends at the expense of the Nation. The world has changed, Republicans need to change with it and stop being so hateful towards people who don’t share their point of view.

  • Anonymous

    Where were you when Reagan and Bush Junior were racking up huge debts during booming economies?

    ::crickets::

    Obama HAD to save the tanking economy by spending our way out of the economic tailspin. He at least had a legitimate reason.

  • Cliff W

    Citizens United and C.U.2 is the SCOTUS approved avenue to a Coup d’etat…by a relatively small hand-full of the American populace. Will the rest of us allow it to happen?

  • Skip Moreland

    That is totally wrong. The people who pay the bills told congress that their computers are not set up to just pay who the president wants. The government is shut down, and cuts to all agencies are put across the board. That is why fema, homeland security, etc, have all had to furlough employees. Which is what the park service did. And that was 90% of the employers who were furloughed.

  • Skip Moreland

    It’s called astro-turf when the ‘grassroots’ are being paid by someone to shill for them. Many of the tea parties are funded by outside groups.

  • Skip Moreland

    um, Single payer means everyone is covered, which is what occurs in most of the civilized world except here. That means everyone gets health care. You don’t need insurance. And it has been working for those other countries quite well. For instance our infant mortality rate is higher than the civilized countries. And red states have infant mortality rates of somalia.

  • Skip Moreland

    They are going to pay no matter what we do, so why not make that bill smaller? By the red states refusing to accept federal help for medicaid, they are trying to uphold the system before ACA. Which costs us twice what every other industrialized nation pays in health care. Because when people don’t have insurance they can’t afford doctors, which means they use ERs. And ERs cost 10 times as much as preventive care.
    Which means that single payer would save us money by allowing everyone to have health care because it would cut down ER use to the unavoidable problems instead of like today, is being use as preventive care by many people. And since ERs don’t do preventive care, the people keep coming back when their problem comes back.
    That is why the studies done show that single payer would be far cheaper for us, than what we have now.
    At least ACA addresses that problem by giving those who can’t afford insurance the way to get health care. That way, they don’t have to use ERs unless it is an unavoidable emergency. Which cuts down on the far costly ER (10 times) with preventive medicine. Thus less cost to the taxpayers who foot the bill anyhow.
    So by having single payer we save money so our children won’t have as much to pay. Or otherwise we can continue to use the republicans’ plan which is to deny health insurance and coverage to people and pay far more in ER care. Let’s see continue wasting money on ER care or save money with health care for all. Because the former is what you are proposing.

  • http://www.globalexplorerclub.wordpress.com/ globalexplorer1

    Out of control debt and slow economic growth definitely undermines our economic viability. Calling it a ‘Carter redux’ is pure fantasy. We all know that GW Bush drove our economy off a cliff with two unfunded wars and a tax hike for the wealthiest Americans. As for economic growth, it is disingenuous in the extreme to pin that on a president that annually pleads for a jobs bill in his State of the Union Address from the Republican-controlled House.

    Carolyn, I know you think socialism is a bad thing, but there is nothing that supports your contention that socialism ensures failure. Funding programs like FEMA is only a bad idea until a hurricane or tornado strikes your state. Funding food stamps is only a bad idea until you lose your job. If you personally have no need of those programs, I am happy for you.
    We can all be thankful for the ‘socialist programs’ that fund our local police and fire departments, our public libraries, public schools, public parks, public transportation, port authorities, and the most socialist of all programs, the U.S. military.

  • http://www.globalexplorerclub.wordpress.com/ globalexplorer1

    Carolyn, it is time to turn off Fox News. It is all to obvious where you are getting your talking points.

  • http://www.globalexplorerclub.wordpress.com/ globalexplorer1

    Maybe we could use some of the $2.5 billion/day spent by the Defense Department, and that’s just on the projects we know about.

  • http://www.globalexplorerclub.wordpress.com/ globalexplorer1

    Skip, I respect your efforts and agree with your comments. Unfortunately, you are trying to convince someone who believes only what is reported by Fox.

  • littlelizard25

    You can twist and spin this all you want, but this is all on the Repubs/baggers. The DoD said in hearings before the shutdown what they would be able to pay and not pay, so did other agencys. The baggers didn’t care. The POTUS does not set fiscal policy, nor does he fund the govt. The House, controlled by baggers does that. POTUS should never negotiate with extortionists, and thats who these people are. If he gives in, whats next? In ten weeks they demand something else or they shut the govt down again? You call that negotiations?

  • littlelizard25

    They don’t want democracy to work. Baggers are doing everything they can to circumvent the democratic process. What they couldn’t do by legislation they are trying to do with extortion. Please list what freedoms and individual rights you have lost?

  • littlelizard25

    I agree with global. You are wasting your time trying to explain anything to a bagger. They really don’t have the ability to grasp anything that Fox, Beck, or Rush tells them to ignore. They alwasys scream about small govt, spending, etc. but when you ask them about specifics, they turn to name calling and and refuse to answer. Becouse they haven’t been told by thier masters what the answer should be. Just ignore them, they are a waste of time, and a waste of space and air on our planet.

  • http://americafirstnetwork.com/ IndependentExtremist

    I love reading from “compassionate”, “diverse” and “tolerant” lefties who fight for the minorities and the “1%ers”–anti-establishment occupiers! They support free-thinkers and those against wall street and corporate welfare! Oh wait–the case here is reversed!? hmmm….hypocrisy!?

  • Iceneedle

    So you probably feel an IED is perfectly suited as a tool to protest?

  • http://www.uncommonsensecommentary.blogspot.com/ BlueDeacon

    Astro-turf — fake grass, no roots.

  • Anonymous

    The mendacity of your comment is dully noted.

  • Anonymous

    Oy vay.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Pitching a fit too! You want to pigeonhole me because it makes you feel more entitled to the mistake you know in your heart you are making by supporting the current, horrendous administration. The willful dishonesty is appalling in a nation where freedom to pursue truth still makes the truth open for anyone to seek and find.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    NO MONEY

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Uhm, there have been deep cuts in the military and ahem, the military is Constitutionally mandated for very logical reasons.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    It was OBAMA and REID who said they will not negotiate. How many good budgets that represent the will of the people have to sit on Reid’s desk before you get honest? 5 years??

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Really? Do you really think that is the truth? Are you so blind that you cannot see your rights being perverted and undermined by the current administration whose president said-and i quote-”I believe the Constitution to be a flawed document in need of revision”. The flaw? YOUR rights-he believes you have too many and the executive not enough. HE is taking your rights away and you bleat and baaah your loyalty to the wolf while others warn and warn and warn.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    I gave you FACTS, reason and logic and you offer this? Utter silliness again. EVERY international news source is telling americans more than any silly US news corporation. Read leMonde, France 24, ALL the UK papers, Russia Today, Der Spiegel-all are warning, warning, warning of the corruption and perversion of the rule of law, the catastrophic trade failures of this administration, the inability to pass a real budget (8 of them sitting on Reids desk for 5 years), and the gross assault on the Constitution and your rights by this administration. Open your eyes and commit yourself to valuing what is truly important-your rights and our children’s future.

  • Tom Carter

    You should know your enemy

  • Carolyn Schuster

    We were still solvent then but he did assault our budget. Does that make this current unpayable debt acceptable? When China will no longer loan money and Obama was literally locked out of trade meetings at the asian summit last january, theere is a deep and soon to be catastrophic problem. The Chinese literally called him to his face “reckless” and “irresponsible” for not negotiating a reasonable budget for (then) 4 years. You have no idea how bad it truly is because you are in a determined bubble-world. Propaganda and fact-hiding is only going so far with the media and those who blindly support this madness. The longer this all goes on the more the truth will out. The rising tide of fascism is on your side and you are advocating it-wait and see what happens in the next 3 months-greater abuse of the system, greater loss of freedoms, and greater willful and purposeful creation of divisions meant to marginalize and then oppress those who are committed to truth without compromise. Ask yourself which side you are on.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Moyers takes the skinf othe truth and packs it with a toxic mix of half-truths and lies. His observations rarely pass the logic and reason muster when the facts are laid out-and he knows it which makes it all the creepier.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Weird and toxic. next you’ll be saying things like teapartiers have hooked noses and like to take your money. I smell a rising tide of oppression and even persecution coming.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    No twists, no spins. REID has 8 BI partisan budgets on his desk and has a stack from the last 5 years HE refuses to allow votes on. Yo don’t get it-this is a problem that the majority has allowed and even promoted for the kind of power you submit to-abusive and bullying. The budget ideas for the last few weeks have been overwhelmngly BI-partisan and still we are hearing, “I will not negotiate”. The dishonesty is killing this nation.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    Actually, not quite. My daughter works for a shipyard and the money was already allocated and waiting. The admiinistrators said “no” you can jsut sit and look at the money sitting there. And the willful malice to make people suffer was articulated and quoted by a senior park official who was told to “make it as painful as possible”. This is willful oppression and bullying added on top of the problem. There is no excuse to keep the White House (OUR house btw)closed yet this malicious executive is gleefully keeping the doors locked. He is poison through and through and you submit to it. Apples do not grow on orange trees and this man’s actions have been to hurt not help this nation.

  • Carolyn Schuster

    This president has disdained the people in so many ways it’s insane. He has used the IRS to target people illegally (now proven beyond a doubt), has used the EPA andthe DOL to abuse and ruin farmers and ranchers for not signing away their water and soil rights to the government, has violated MY rights under the Constitution, and has closed MY and YOUR White House to hurt the least. You don;t get it. You cannot bully and lie and get a result that is good for people and yet you support him.

  • http://www.freewebs.com/compuaid/index.htm Ather

    So it’s not the black man in the white house destroying America, it’s the white men in the House (& Senate). It’s not Affordable care Act destroying America, it’s the attempts to stop it. The very people who are our saviors were the ones who engineered all the problems they’re now trying to save us from. Which is only making things worse.

    They have zero plans in place for this. Dems weren’t supposed to let the Gov shut down, because the people would naturally blame the Dems. But they did, and we aren’t. Their plans thwarted, there’s nothing but scrambeling and panic ensueing because they have no idea what to do. it never occurred to them they’d ever need a Plan B. Rather than learn from their mistake, our saviors are doing the same thing, and expecting a different outcome. Which will only result int he end fo the republican party. The Tea party will not rise from their ashes, but slowly fade into irrelevancy. The 2nd half of the 21st century shall be politically interesting as we see who arises to take their place. Hopefully the Green Party.

  • Kathryn Guillaum

    Tell me again; What is the definition of Treason?

  • Anonymous

    The Dems submitted a budget in April

    and ask for conference 19 times.

    1. 4/23 Reid asked to go to conference, Toomey blocked.

    2. 5/6 Reid asked to go to conference, Cruz blocked.

    3. 5/7 Murray requested to go to conference, McConnell blocked.

    4. 5/8 Warner asked to go to conference, McConnell blocked.

    5. 5/9 Murray asked to go to conference,McConnell blocked.

    6. 5/14 Warner asked to go to conference, McConnell blocked.

    7. 5/15 Wyden asked to go to conference, McConnell blocked.

    8. 5/16 Murray asked to go to conference,Lee blocked.

    9. 5/21 Murray asked to go to conference, Paul blocked.

    10. 5/22 Kaine asked to go to conference, Rubio blocked.

    11. 5/23 McCaskill asked to go to conference, Lee blocked.

    12. 6/4 Murray asked to go to conference, Rubio blocked.

    13. 6/12 Kaine asked to go to conference, Lee blocked.

    14. 6/19 Murray asked to go to conference, Toomey blocked.

    15. 6/26 Murray asked to go to conference, Cruz blocked.

    16. 7/11 Murray asked to go to conference, Rubio blocked.

    17. 7/17 Murray asked to go to conference, Lee blocked.

    18. 8/1 Durbin asked to go to conference, Rubio blocked.

    19. 10/2 Murray asked to go to conference, Toomey blocked

  • Anonymous

    “We, the People of the United States of America, do solemnly swear that we will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies,
    foreign and DOMESTIC; that we will bear true faith and allegiance to the
    same; that we take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation
    or purpose of evasion; and that we will well and faithfully discharge
    the duties of the office upon which we are about to enter. So help us God.”

  • http://www.globalexplorerclub.wordpress.com/ globalexplorer1

    Asked and answered. I am on the side of rational thinking. You do know that it is the Constitutionally-assigned task for Congress to draft a budget, right?

  • http://www.globalexplorerclub.wordpress.com/ globalexplorer1

    The only budgets that sit on Reid’s desk are those that have been referred to as the ‘Ryan Budget.’ Rep. Paul Ryan, Chairman of the House Budget Committee has put forth nothing but the Tea Party agenda, and backers of this budget with its draconian cuts are what put us into this gridlock in the first place.
    You say you offer facts, but you only name sources. You have not sited one source for your ideas or quoted any facts in any of your rants. To quote the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, ‘You are entitled to your own opinions. You are not entitled to your own facts.’
    Give us readers something, anything other than your well-rehearsed spiel. If you can offer anything credible, I will consider your views as something other than a tirade or conspiracy theory. Am I worried about our children’s future? Yes. Have you offered anything in the way of a viable course of action? Not yet.

  • Anonymous

    Liar!

  • damun5

    “And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Matt.:19:24

  • Anonymous

    But yet YOU support the bullying that is currently being done by your beloved GOP to the ENTIRE COUNTRY???? Can’t have it both ways ya know.

  • Anonymous

    she may KNOW it but based on her posts doesn’t CARE!!! Doesn’t suit her slant

  • Mark Throckmorton

    The lesson of John Boehner would, but for hubris and the tempting promises of power, be instructive to the small, unrepresentative cadre that have seized power in the House. Boehner wanted to be the Speaker he thought he had been denied a chance to be after Newt. He made a deal with these Ten Devils and their minions to hold onto power in 2010. Now he is a husk of himself, an impotent figurehead trotted out to “negotiations” he has no authority to bring to the House floor, much less to see passed. The blame and shame are heaped upon him, and he has no escape.

    This will also happen to Cruz, to Cantor, to Palin, and to all who seek to rise on today’s strategic issue of the corporate uber-class – only to fall into humiliating obscurity when the next attack on democracy and equality is chosen by their masters. Yes, the people can be fickle, but these puppet-masters are out and out conniving.

    It was Milton’s Lucifer who said, “‘Better to reign in Hell than to serve in Heav’n.” What sad irony to have the supposed Christian right wing following that doctrine.

  • Mark Throckmorton

    The voters of districts that look almost nothing like the vast majority of America, or even American house districts. In days gone by, either that freshman representative would have worked to see some benefit for his/her district instead of grandstanding and bringing a nation to its knees (and each other’s throats). In short, he would accomplish something, while the nation as a whole was represented. What has happened instead is a terrible lesson of what will happen when this country becomes “majority-minority”: a faction of whites will behave just as they (wrongly) feared non-whites in power would behave. These ultra-conservative “safe” districts are the breeding ground for a radicalism that respects neither law nor reason. They are, in fact, the “dangerous” districts. The trajectory to their demise no later than the 2020 census redistricting is being etched in stone.

  • Mark Throckmorton

    Do you support the doctrine of not negotiating with terrorists? That is the essence of Obama’s response. This government shutdown sham threatens to complete the work of 9-11: the end of democracy, prosperity, and dignity in America. Osama bin Laden is smiling broadly in his watery grave; American Republicans have done the work his followers could not.

  • Mark Throckmorton

    Actually, Carolyn, the IRS targetting conservative 501(c)(4)s matter has been proven an utter misrepresentation of fact “beyond a doubt”. The rest of your claims are also Fox-ian blabber. Obama has negotiated more with the GOP legislators than his predecessor did with Dems. Name a specific constitutional right of yours that has been violated (I will grant you NSA violations of 14th amendment, but you will have to take it from there). This cadre within the House GOP membership has, in fact, taken away the constitutional rights and basic human rights from our citizens through the refusal to allow settled law to take effect and by selectively starving populations they consider to be left-leaning. Your clinging to right wing myths without justification by fact is the bullying and lying that is bringing America to its knees.

  • Mark Throckmorton

    Let us imagine, for a moment, the outcry had the president ordered the spending of monies that the congress had cut off. I don’t think you get this one both ways, Mr. Magoon: saying Obama is a dictator and law-breaker one day, then claiming he is responsible for the shut down because he followed the law. How can the right wing make both of these claims?

  • Mark Throckmorton

    If you really care to see, there is no gleefull-ness in the POTUS these days. He is weary. He is concerned. He has a job to do, which is to not sell out all Americans in order to let a radical minority faction off the hook for the epic fail of their ill-conceived strategy. It is not a pleasant task for a man who was elected by the largest majority in a long, long time, but because of his commitment to all Americans he has to find a way to contain the damage and yet, like another president from Illinois, bring his enemies back into the fold of the nation. Those enemies (and they have identified themselves as such by their failed “one term president” pledge) must want to be a part of America again, but the door is open when they do. Pass a clean CR, reopen America to Americans, and then the grown-up work of governing can begin.

  • Mark Throckmorton

    Debt can be managed and repaid. The damage to democracy is being done by those who are willing to morally indebt themselves to the rich backers of their campaigns, not the monetary debt of our federal treasury. If you dispute this, tell me one way the national debt negatively impacts you today.

  • Patrick S. Lovell

    Brilliant! Most effective presentation of the story behind the scenes that I’ve seen yet! Well done.

  • Anonymous

    The take-over of Congress is check. While we fight about that, the Trans Pacific Partnership will be mate.

    There’s a hell of a cleanup on our plates.

  • Anonymous

    “The President’s Fiscal Year 2014 Budget was posted on the Congressional Budget Office website earlier this year and the CBO analyzed it and published its findings online. “

    The budget process is outlined in the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 with a calendar of deadlines to keep the process on track for completion before the fiscal new year on October 1. You can find that on the Budget Committee page for the House and Senate. The required deadlines were very important to the Republicans in January and they introduced the No Budget No Pay Act because they wanted strict adherence on the deadlines. It was passed in the House and Senate and the President signed it. The House and Senate passed their budgets by the deadline and what happened after that? Why weren’t the rest of the deadlines on the calendar completed?”

    “The House and Senate have to go to conference to reconcile the differences between their two budget resolutions. When Reid tried to get the process started in the Senate, the usual suspects from the GOP rose one by one with objections. This was a charade that went on for weeks. They made it clear that they wanted the Democrats consent agreement in advance on all of the elements in the Ryan budget passed by the House or there would be no conference. They were the ones who didn’t want to negotiate. Read the verbatim transcripts in the Congressional Record from April 24 to May 15. The Republicans never even appointed conferees to the conference because they didn’t want to negotiate. Instead they let the clock run out on the fiscal year knowing that they made no appropriations for the new fiscal year. They didn’t even reauthorize 2013 spending to avoid disruptions on October 1. They thought it would be easier to extract concessions from the Democrats once they were faced with the urgency of a government shutdown. The President is wise not to negotiate with Republican extortionists. “

  • Anonymous

    Ha! Boehner is the KING of tabled legislation, even from his own party.

  • Anonymous

    Only K0CH one thing K0CH missing K0CH from the article. The K0CHs finance K0CH virtually every one K0CH of the rightwing “think tanks” that K0CH pump out the K0CH plans and the talking points K0CH for their crazy followers. And they K0CH have spent at least K0CH a billion dollars over the K0CH last decade on the K0CH plan to defund the Federal Government.

  • Anonymous

    Ummm that is not the bible that the Christian K0CH Taliban reads.

  • Anonymous

    “K0CHBagger”

  • Anonymous

    Pushing the voters agenda? Well over a million and half more voted for Dems in the house.
    Obama won decisively.
    So why are the baggers going against the will of the majority?

  • Anonymous

    the Dems got more votes in the house than Baggers did. But do to gerrymandering you got it anyway.
    the president won handily.
    So the people have spoken. If they didnt want the ACA they would have voted Robme in.
    And the math problem is yours. the ACA is working and will work according to every sane economist.
    the reason you and your ilk are so scared is because you know it will work.

  • Anonymous

    Wrong no matter how many times you clones post it.

  • Anonymous

    Carolyin you are truly hopeless. But dont worry we will make sure your grandchildren do not grow up to be fodder for the K0CH Brothers.

  • Anonymous

    Carolyin you are lying. Obama was not locked out of the meetings. LOL Try a new tact that is fact based.
    And he is not responsible for the budget not being passed. You have been shown the facts over and over and you keep regurgitating the lies of whichever radio show you listen to.

  • Anonymous

    People like Ted Cruz were not elected to sit down, listen to their leadership and do as they were told. They were elected because the people who elected them disapprove of the direction that the GOP leadership is going in and wants a change. Primary challenges give the electorate a true choice. Yes, the people funding them are conservative. So what? Who’s strategizing for and funding the Democrats? George Soros and other such left-wing individuals and special interest groups.

    You must think that voters are mindless sheep. Financing enables a candidate to get media time so that people know about him or her, but that doesn’t mean that they are forced to vote for him. A bundle of money gets you on TV, but all that does is put them on an equal footing with the GOP establishment incumbents for face time. It doesn’t walk into the voting booth and pull the lever. Heck, I thought that Democrats were pro-choice. Maybe Democrats vote for whichever candidate has the most money, but conservatives are a bit more discriminating.

  • Anonymous

    The House is not forcing the country into default. First, there is no law that stops the President from simply continuing to use current tax revenues to pay the public debt; revenues outstrip what’s necessary to pay Treasury bonds, etc. about 13 to 1. If he fails to do that he should be impeached and removed from office for deliberately damaging the country’s credit rating for political reasons. As Chief Executive his responsibilities to the country outstrip his responsibilities to his party or any one piece of favored legislation.

    Second, they House has passed bills – multiple ones – that would save the country from default. They’re not passing the Senate because the President wants to save his pet project. Let the Senate pass the bills without the ACA, let the President sign them, and then let the House and Senate debate the ACA.

  • Anonymous

    Here’s what the people who wrote the Constitution said about the purpose of giving the House the sole power to originate tax and appropriation bills, how they thought they should and could use it and how they thought the Senate and President would react. This is from Federalist Paper 58:

    “The House of Representatives cannot only refuse, but they alone can propose, the supplies requisite for the support of government. They, in a word, hold the purse that powerful instrument by which we behold, in the history of the British Constitution, an infant and humble representation of the people gradually enlarging the sphere of its activity and importance, and finally reducing, as far as it seems to have wished, all the overgrown prerogatives of the other branches of the government. This power over the purse may, in fact, be regarded as the most complete and effectual weapon with which any constitution can arm the immediate representatives of the people, for obtaining a redress of every grievance, and for carrying into effect every just and salutary measure. But will not the House of Representatives be as much interested as the Senate in maintaining the government in its proper functions, and will they not therefore be unwilling to stake its existence or its reputation on the pliancy of the Senate? Or, if such a trial of firmness between the two branches were hazarded, would not the one be as likely first to yield as the other? These questions will create no difficulty with those who reflect that in all cases the smaller the number, and the more permanent and conspicuous the station, of men in power, the stronger must be the interest which they will individually feel in whatever concerns the government.

    Those who represent the dignity of their country in the eyes of other nations, will be particularly sensible to every prospect of public danger, or of dishonorable stagnation in public affairs. To those causes we are to ascribe the continual triumph of the British House of Commons over the other branches of the government, whenever the engine of a money bill has been employed. An absolute inflexibility on the side of the latter, although it could not have failed to involve every department of the state in the general confusion, has neither been apprehended nor experienced. The utmost degree of firmness that can be displayed by the federal Senate or President, will not be more than equal to a resistance in which they will be supported by constitutional and patriotic principle.”

  • Anonymous

    To sum this up:

    1) Holding the power of the purse over the House of Lords and the King enabled the House of Commons, which started from very humble beginnings, to become more powerful than either the House of Lords and the King.
    2) Giving this power to the House of Representatives was intended to give them the same power over the Senate and the President.
    3) It had been seen in England that the House of Lords and the King always in the end realized that it was in the best interests of the country to defer to the House when it was resolved in such a matter rather than endanger it’s status in the world or by halting all public business.
    4) The Founders thought it was obvious that the Senate and the President would see that such was in the United States’ best interests as well.

    The problem isn’t 1) and 2) – that’s working as planned. The problem is that when the House has held to principle the Senate and President are acting against the country’s best interests, which the Founders did not anticipate.

  • Anonymous

    Yes, the president has been shamelessly sitting back and letting the most infantile of voices (Harry Reid) to impugn and name call in the most slanderous ways. The House has been good people of high principles and values. I’m giving my contributions to those people, the ones who care about us and the future. Those pandering to illegals while disgustingly calling others racists and similar need to get a real job. Shame on Moyers. He does not speak for me.

  • Anonymous

    It has been too bad that Ted Cruz, Rubio, Paul, Labrador, Lee, et al have not been given fair treatment by the media. They are great Americans. The country has been badly divided by the liberals who have no clue about real people. Bill Moyers has always been blind to the real nature of American life.
    A little like the Obama person we currently have in the WH.

  • Anonymous

    The Christians are still here, despite the Muslims’ persecution of Christians.
    You and your ilk who are intolerant but preach intolerance for anti American values are dearly deprived of any understanding of fact that Americans treasure their freedom. As for your criticisms of Cruz and others. They are our future. Obama will be the one going down in flames in the history books — he transformed the US yes — by dividing and blaming and name calling. His lack of dignity will taint his term in office. Just a mouthy scammer, not a patriot, or even a concerned citizen. Wearing the lapel flag means nothing. Open the reams of files on this guy — he fought against American values, not for them.

  • Anonymous

    Very cute and stupid thing to say. You must be on Obama’s freeby rolls — welfare, subsidized healthcare, need not register to vote, etc.

  • Anonymous

    Why did the media not cover the waivers that Obama gave to his many friends / contributors? They don’t get obamacare. You don’t really know anything other than the Democrats’ talking points, do you? Try listening to C-Span or doing some research. Your ignorance is astounding.

  • Anonymous

    Obama chose to avoid any negotiations. He is the first president to be so arrogant, self-absorbed and Anti American to do so. We are in big trouble when people who are so ignorant go along with such dictatorial methods to divide and conquer and to end the rights of Americans. He hates the Constitution. And, it is slowly but surely disappearing from America, thanks to his demands.

  • Anonymous

    Nj Hill, You are truly mixed up. It’s the Democrats who own and control the media and it’s the people who are trying to stop the train wreck known as BARRACK HUSSEIN OBAMA.

  • Mark Throckmorton

    Yes, the Christians are still here: I am one of them – an ordained minister of the Word and Sacrament in the church that has its roots in the first church in the New World other than the Catholics of Spain and Portugal. I am the son of a minister who served faithfully and well for decades. I know the Bible and treasure its precepts, honor its message, and lovingly serve the God who is revealed within.
    -And I am a passionate student and defender of what America stands for and what makes this nation great. Certainly, our freedoms are principal among these values, especially the freedom from imposition of particular religious values and institutions by the state upon the people. Of all our freedoms, I believe this is the one God also holds dearest, for the most ungodly and unChristian things are done in the states that contend that they rule in the name of God. God is glorified by those souls who choose Him, not those forced by the pressure of government to bow down to the official religion of the state. Mr. Cruz and his “Christian” ilk wish to use the name of Christ to acheive personal power, not the “Kingdom of God” where none exaults himself over another.
    -I have been at worship in a body of Christ with the very man who is now our president, the man you imply is a Muslim in your coded first lines. You bear false witness against him when you do this. Is that acceptable for a Christian in your book? If so, your allegiance to Cruz et al is understandable, for neither you nor he stand with the Gospel or the Law. Is lying about a man’s faith, his record, or his heart for his country the way of Christ? That is what you are doing, plain and simple, and you would say yourself that those who do these things will not prosper in God’s sight.
    -So do not carelessly wave a finger at liberals and Democrats to say they are not good Christians like yourself. There are many of us out there who are righteously angry at your haughtiness, and we are ready, as I have just done, to open a whole can of Gospel on y’all. When the walls fall, as they are around the haters that claim to be followers of the God of Love, the Bible says repentance is a good idea; a great deal more pleasing in God’s sight than pride.
    -Jus’ sayin’…

  • Mark Throckmorton

    Can there be no check against the House when it abuses its authority? And what if the House itself is not the agent of withholding the “purse”, but an unelected minority interest like Heritage Action? What is the check on the power of the purse wielded by corporate interests more powerful proportionally than was the East India Tea company in December of 1773? This House has made it increasingly difficult for the citizens to rise against the corporations that – then and today – exert undue and unaccountable control over the governing process.
    The crime of this House of Representatives is that they have made it more attractive and seem more feasible to overthrow a law-abiding president elected with an impressive majority than to bring a law-breaking oil company or military contractor to trial for its offenses. THAT is not what the Founders of our nation planned, by any means. That is Treason by legislation and distraction; Sedition by bribe and conflict of interest.

  • Anonymous

    It’s interesting to read Moyers and Company. He masqueraded as a journalist for decades despite his extreme liberal views. The disservice done to Americans by a person who used the media to promote and provoke with biased reporting caused a huge amount of damage. All those years that we all believed what we read in the papers and saw on TV have now been exposed as the era of dishonest, agenda driven, and even malicious preaching from the friendly faces we saw and trusted on TV. Pathetic that Moyers maneuvered us into trusting his reports on every aspect of American politics instead of realizing that his ideology was basically pure socialism.
    Extra disappointment for me is that he was born in Hugo, OK. My relatives in Antlers used to think it was “nice” that a good ol’ boy from OK had “made it.” Not so anymore…..he has been revealed to be more socialist than pro American values.

  • Iceneedle

    Not at all. Simply calling them as seen. Why would you have a continuing resolution with the defunding of the ACA? Because, the Republicans knew it would not pass the Senate and the result would be closing of the Federal government. If it did pass, then Social Security or Medicare or Medicaid could all be defunded as easily.

  • Curtis Merida

    how morass

  • JonThomas

    Yeah, I shouldn’t have posted after I saw the comment had been deleted. It was a doozy. It was fun though and I had spent too much time working on my reply to just toss it. I figured the mod might still have a copy or remember it enough to get a kick. lol.

  • Curtis Merida

    thanks for the cool reply!, I just couldn’t follow exactly what your point was, then I read some of your other comments which were lucid and that I agreed with, so, yeah, the other one I commented on you said you wrote off the top of your head, and this one you spent a lot of time on, I guess sometimes we can all be guilty of a preponderance of ponderance

  • Will Sync

    I feel the same as you about our nations future…to put it bluntly our children and their children are screwed. To me the guy who was capable of stopping the madness was JFK. We dont get a vote in our nations money/credit/debt creation… Remember December 23, 1913? no living person does. The international bankers got their hooks in deep. A parasite was attached to the nation. 1913… the Federal Reserve act and the 1st Federal income tax (that didn’t get overturned by the Supreme Court) funny how that worked out. So…here we are…100 years later…I ask you Carolyn…Do you want to strike at the root…or the branches? All i’m saying is redirect you fire at the real problem. Focus on what stay the same…Presidents come and go…what remains unchanged?

  • Will Sync

    Solutions? I have one…or two…#1 Strike at the root. #2 follow the money. http://www.webofdebt.com/

  • Anonymous

    Ramen. :)