About Those Tax Returns: We’ve Seen This Tactic Before
With the current debate instigated by the Democratic Party and David Axelrod and Barack Obama regarding Romney’s tax returns, this strategy is nothing new. Two points are immediately obvious. First, as long as Obama’s obedient media keeps harping on the issue, it will be kept in the forefront. Second, Mitt Romney is under no legal or moral obligation to release ten years worth of tax returns. Because Bush or Clinton or whoever did, including his father 44 years ago, is inconsequential. Therefore, it would behoove certain Republicans who are falling in line with the liberal media in calling for release of those tax returns in the name of “clearing the air.” These pleas serve no purpose other than to play into the hands of Axelrod and the media. Who are any of them, let alone fellow Republicans, to demand this?
More importantly, we need to look at a little recent history to see that this tactic is nothing new by Obama. In 2004, in his run for Senate, while Saint Barack sat above the fray, his cronies in the Chicago media- instigated by campaign operatives- demanded release of his opponent’s sealed divorce records. That Republican opponent was Jack Ryan who had divorced actress Jeri Ryan. The records, as well as the custody records of their child, were sealed by order of the Los Angeles Superior Court. That same court took the unprecedented step of unsealing the divorce records despite neither party- Jack or Jeri Ryan- requesting a court to do so. In any divorce proceeding, one of the biggest casualties is truth along the way. In this particular instance, we are unsure if the Ryans ever did have public sex in clubs in New York, New Orleans, or Paris, only that Jeri Ryan insinuated this in the divorce proceeding. Like the present case, while the battle over Ryan’s divorce records were being fought out in a court 1,500 miles from Illinois, Republican Party leaders in that state leaned on Ryan to “just release the records.” Never mind the fact that a child’s welfare was involved. So when I hear Democrats talking about Mitt Romney’s tax returns, I automatically think Jack Ryan! Again- this is a tried and true tactic of Obama: make the accusation or insinuation, usually not from Obama himself, then force the opponent to prove otherwise. One can only hope Romney does not fall for this trap and that fellow Republicans do not advise Romney into this trap.
Which brings me to another hypocrisy of Team Obama and again we need to look a little further back in his electoral history. When he first ran for state senate in Illinois, it was to fill the seat of Alice Palmer who was running in the Democratic primary for US Senate. Obama was Palmer’s hand-picked successor. Unfortunately for Palmer, she finished a distant third in that primary and wanted her old state senate seat back. However, Obama felt that Palmer was going back on her word to him. She managed to get the requisite number of signatures on a petition within the time period allowed by state law to get her name on the primary ballot. Team Obama then went into overdrive and challenged names on that petition as well as other opponents in the primary to the point they fell below the legal threshold for number of signatures. In effect, Obama ran in the primary unopposed.
Now for the hypocrisy. According to Team Obama in 2012, this time more scary because he has the office of the Presidency and the Executive Branch as his disposal, attempts by states to enact voter ID laws are nothing more than a subtle conservative, Republican ploy to disenfranchise minorities. The states argue that the laws are necessary to combat voter fraud, yet the Administration contends that voter fraud is a myth and non-existent, or that there are so few cases that voter ID laws are not justified. They cite tons of statistics, generally relying on the Brennan Center for Justice. Yet, wasn’t it Team Obama, in his bid for state senate, that uncovered enough examples of voter fraud to have practically the entire Democratic slate of opponents in the primary wiped off the ballot? Clearly, as the squeaky clean Illinois court system determined, these signatures on Palmer’s petition were fraudulent and they were disallowed. In other words, Obama had uncovered an example of election fraud, one big enough to get Palmer kicked off the ballot. How can they now try to blunt voter ID laws designed to deter or eliminate election fraud when they themselves uncovered such allegedly non-existent fraud years ago? Think of it this way: what if those signatures on Palmer’s petition were not challenged and she was placed on the ballot and won the primary. Wouldn’t she have gotten there by fraudulent means in the first place?
And ironically, that is the gist of the Obama strategy this time out. He and his campaign staff realize that they cannot run on their record. Hence, they are trying to reframe the choice and define the opponent and that definition is that Mitt Romney is worse than Obama, not that Obama is better than Romney. There is a huge difference. By framing it this way, he is hoping that conservatives and fence-sitters will simply sit this one out. And quite frankly, most of the fence sitters are white. In other words, he is attempting to politically suppress the white vote and turnout, especially in swing states.
Which brings me to the third prong of the Obama strategy- the race card plus. In every election where he had a serious challenge- state senate versus Alice Palmer in the primary (a race he probably would have lost had he not uncovered that “fraud”), his failed bid for Congress against Bobby Rush, and his US Senate bid against Alan Keyes, he ran against a fellow African-American. He could not trot out the race card (except by calling Keyes a “carpetbagger,” which he realistically was). But, when his opposition was Hillary Clinton or John McCain, he had no compunctions against using the race card. Lyndon Johnson signing the Civil Rights Act (an historical fact) was racist because it minimized Martin Luther King, Jr. Attacks on his youthful drug use was racist because, as we all know, only black youth use drugs. The historical fact that Jesse Jackson won the South Carolina primary in his Presidential bids became a racist sentiment. Comments such as he does not look like anyone on the dollar bill or in speeches in Berlin that he does not look like other Americans who gave speeches there is Obama himself playing the race card. In a Jacksonville fundraiser and later in Missouri, he alleged that the Republicans were trying to “scare” voters because of his color or his “funny name.” As recently as 2010, in response to the phenomena of the Tea Party, Obama told a White House group at a private party that it was racially motivated. It has even been suggested in some liberal quarters that even using the phrase “race card” is white American code for the “N” word.
In 2012, it will be even worse and likely start with surrogates suggesting racial motivation. But before this campaign ends, Obama himself will not stay above the fray because his political back will be against the proverbial wall. Less than 100 days out from the election, he knows he should be ahead by a large margin, yet it is still considered a dead heat. Instead, knowing that he has the black vote sewn up, the goal will be to instill and build upon “white guilt” with white voters.
Not only will race enter the discussion with gloves off- which is bad enough- but mark my words today August 6th, 2012. At some point, some surrogate will subtly drop the Mormon bomb which will be taken up by a willing liberal media. The whole design of this is voter suppression and is targeted at staunch conservative, evangelical voters. Obama realizes he cannot win that vote. He may have bamboozled a certain segment of it in 2008 because he was a relative unknown, but he loses that advantage this year. Instead, by casting doubt on the legitimacy of Romney’s religion, he hopes that this segment of the populace will just sit it out. In this way, his coalition of minorities- blacks and Hispanics- with some urban white liberals will make the difference in close states like Virginia, Colorado, and Ohio, all states he knows he must retain if he has any chance of winning.
This year will be no different than any other Barack Obama political campaign. It is the only way a candidate with a thin resume can win, or an ineffective President can win. We have seen this strategy before. If you have nothing to hide regarding your marriage and divorce, then prove it; unseal your divorce papers. If you have nothing to hide regarding your taxes, then prove it: release 10 years of tax returns. If you are really not a racist country, then prove it: vote for Barack Obama for another four years. This is what the strategy of our first alleged “post-racial” President has become and it is pitiful. Just end the misery and fire Barack Obama in November. This country and the world will be a better place if we discard the last four years on trash heap of history.