Coburn: 2013 Marked ‘Unwinding of Country’s Founding Principles’
Senator Tom Coburn says the power grab by Democratic leaders in Congress, not to mention the Obama administration’s apparent disdain for the rule of law, made 2013 one of the nation’s worst years.
“In both the executive branch and Congress, Americans witnessed an unwinding of the country’s founding principles and of their government’s most basic responsibilities,” Coburn wrote Monday in an op-ed piece carried in The Wall Street Journal.
“The rule of law gave way to the rule of rulers. And the rule of reality . . . gave way to some politicians’ belief that they were entitled to both their own opinions and their own facts.”
“It’s no wonder the institutions of government barely function,” the Oklahoma Republican added.
Coburn described the launching of Obamacare as one of the most devastating blows to the rule of law and he accused President Obama of changing his signature achievement “according to whim” without regard to any legal or constitutional constraints that might be involved. He also wrote that the most troubling aspect of the president’s behavior in pushing the law on the American public was his promise that people would be able to keep their current insurance plans and doctors.
“We now know that the administration was aware that these claims were false, yet Mr. Obama continued to make them, repeatedly,” Coburn said.
Even though the president “apologized in part for his statements,” it sent a message to politicians that “message discipline” is the name-of-the-game if it helps “to win an election or achieve a short-term political goal.”
“When a misleading message ultimately clashes with reality, the result is dissonance and conflict,” the Oklahoma senator argued. “In a republic, deception is destructive.”
Coburn took a hard swipe at Democrats in Congress as well, calling Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s successful effort to do away with the 60-vote threshold for moving most presidential nominations an outright power grab “to undo 200 years of precedent that requires a supermajority to change Senate rules.”
“To speed the approval of executive appointments and judicial nominations, Sen. Reid resorted to raw political power, forcing a vote (52-48) that allows the Senate majority to change the rules whenever it wants,” Coburn complained. “In a republic, if majorities can change laws or rules however they please, you’re on the road to life with no rules and no laws.”
Coburn concluded by noting that if Americans are truly fed up, as he is, with the way Washington works these days, then they should make use of the elections this year to make some changes.
“If you don’t like the rulers you have, you don’t have to keep them,” he wrote.
Last year brought us more scandals and broken laws than we’ve seen in two decades. Things that used to make people gasp in shock are now every day occurrences with this administration. Decadent behavior and lifestyles are now celebrated instead of mentioned only in whispered gossip. Lying and defaming others is acceptable so long as it’s followed with an apology. 2014 looks to be more of the same.
Senator Coburn is one of the good guys because he speaks the truth, but it would be nice to see him do more than talk. It would be nice to see our legislators take some action, instead of leaving it up to us at election time. We need more than merely replacing a few bad apples. This government needs a deep cleaning from the top down.