Rahm Emanuel, Obama’s former Chief of Staff and the current mayor of what many consider the Murder Capitol of the U.S., once credited his success at getting unpopular legislation passed to his ability to take bad news and turn it into a tool–kind of like a hammer and sickle, if you know what I mean–to accomplish his objectives.
“You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”
While Obama has been exhibit A in proving how successful this philosophy can be, Mitch McConnell and his gang of RINOs in the Senate are out to prove that they can be just as effective.
In the aftermath of the Orlando massacre, we have already witnessed four anti-Second Amendment votes in the Republican-controlled Senate. Those votes all went down in “defeat,” but that was most likely an intentional outcome in order to pass something else a little later once the pressure is off, such as the bill announced yesterday by Senators Jeff Flake (R-AZ) and Susan Collins (R-ME).
According to Collins, the bill will still use the error-prone no-fly list to identify those individuals who should be denied the right to buy or own a gun, but it will contain an “appeals process” for anyone who finds themselves on the list to use in order to be removed from the list and have their rights restored.
Collins claims that the appeals process will protect the “due process” rights of Americans that previous anti-Second Amendment efforts have tried to ignore, but in actuality, it proves her ignorance and/or disregard of the Constitution. Our constitutional rights mean we are innocent until proven guilty; her bill means we are guilty until proven innocent. The bill does provide for reimbursement of any legal fees if the appeal is victorious–which means taxpayers will pay for abuses and errors made by the government–but with appeals likely to take years, the nightmare this would create for innocent Americans is almost impossible to imagine.
But wait! There’s more!
The Senate voted yesterday on another “crisis” piece of legislation, this one a Republican-backed proposal that drastically expands the FBI’s surveillance powers. The legislation makes it easier for the bureau to conduct warrantless searches of electronic communications, including: email time stamps, email recipient and sender information, websites visited and social media log-in data.
The final tally was two votes short of the required 60, but just as it was with the gun-control votes, this defeat was a procedural maneuver, as we see in McConnell’s “no” vote — done to allow him to bring it back at a future date.
And bring it back he will! Because Mickey loves him some government spying!
Last year McConnell and his crew did everything they could to defeat the “USA Freedom Act,” a bill that reigned in the abusive bulk collection of data–obtained without a warrant–by the National Security Agency (NSA). While his efforts to allow the agency to continue their violation of our Fourth Amendment right against “unreasonable search and seizure” failed, he emphatically let his colleagues know that the nation would be “less safe” as a result.
Never let a crisis go to waste? It worked for Obama in his “fundamental transformation of the United States of America,” and it’s working equally well for the Republicans who put their political ambitions ahead of our constitutional rights.
David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative, your source for opinion that’s politically-incorrect and always “right.” His articles can also be found on RedState.com.
His daily radio commentary is nationally syndicated with Salem Radio Network and can be heard on stations across America.