In his Opinion, Clyde R. Steele, Nov. 30 Explorer, page 8, made sure we knew he was a supporter of Pres. Barack Obama. Unfortunately, this prevented him from being objective. He claims that there were 300 more Bills than any other Congress that were filibustered. Since he did not tell us, I do not know which Congress he was referring to. There were four Congresses during Pres. Barack Obama’s tenure: the 111th Congress: 2009 and 2010; the 112th Congress: 2011 and 2012; the 113th Congress: 2013 and 2014; and the 114th Congress: 2015 and 2016. He seems to want to blame Republicans for the filibusters, but this is misleading. Filibusters are long discussions. They end when a Cloture Motion is voted on which is either passed or rejected. During the first two years, the Democrats were in the majority in both the House and the Senate. The Senate had 60 Democrats until Sen. Kennedy was too ill to be present. If there were any Cloture Motions that were defeated during these two years, it was because all 60 Democrats did not vote YEA. The following four years, the Republicans were the majority in the House while the Democrats were the majority in the Senate. Because the Senate did not have 60 Democrats, Sen. Reid chose not to bring up many of the Republican House-sponsored Bills for a vote. Some of the House Bills were sponsored by Democrats and were supported by both parties. During the 114th Congress, both the House and Senate had a majority of Republicans. For a Cloture Motion to be passed, all Republicans had to vote YEA along with five Democrats. If Republicans voted YEA to bring the Bill up for a vote and all of or most of the Democrats voted NAY, Democrats were responsible for the Cloture Motion’s not passing, not the Republicans.
Barack Obama’s mentor while he was in Hawaii was Frank Marshall Davis, a very active communist. In his autobiographies, Barack Obama claimed to choose his friends carefully, mentioning that he chose among his friends, the communist professors at Columbia University. He sat in a pew listening to a radical anti-American pastor for many years. He promised, in his campaign, “hope and change”, without explaining at all what he really planned to do. Because of the foregoing, Republicans believed he planned to take the country much farther to the left than the majority of Americans wanted. This is why they chose to vote against the far-left changes he was making.
Unfortunately, Pres. Barack Obama did not introduce Bills that the Republicans’ constituents supported. Republicans did support a few bills that originated in the Congress during Pres. Obama’s administration, because their constituents supported them as well.
Oil drilling did not become “Energy Independence,” for the reasons stated in the opinion. We are now, on private lands, getting a lot of oil and gas because of fracturing, so we have become energy independent. Less oil is now drilled from public lands than in 2008.
Mr. Steele mentioned that “Inheritance Tax” became “Death Tax.” There is no Federal Inheritance Tax in America. There is an “Estate Tax,” which means the estate of the deceased person is taxed before it distributed to those who inherit it. Actually, “Death Tax” is a more accurate name for the ‘Estate Tax” than “Inheritance Tax.”
You cannot “Tax the Rich” without deducting more of their income in taxes, so “Take from the Rich” is accurate.
Health insurance was reformed, not health care. Government decides what the insurance should include, not the person insured. The Government did “take over” and decide what had to be covered: the decision was not made by the insured person, whose only decision was whether they would have a bronze, silver or gold plan. Plans that the President called “Junk Plans” were no longer allowed. The plans were popular, along with a catastrophic plan, among those who were young and had lots of college debt. Not all of these people are covered under their parents’ plans. These people are now uninsured because they cannot afford the only plans they are allowed to buy. This Bill has not had the support of the majority of Americans.
Capitalism allows economic freedom; socialism does not.
Since in the 115th Congress, Republicans do not have 60 Senators, the results of this Congress will be much like those of the 114th Congress. Some types of Bills, including the Budget Bills, only need 50 votes in the Senate; they will be Passed, but those that need 60 votes to bring them up for a vote which requires 50 votes to pass will probably be in trouble.
One cannot expect Republicans to support policies their constituents do not agree with. It seems that Mr. Steele believes Republicans should go against their constituents’ wishes to vote with Democrats. Unlike Mr. Steele, I do not expect Democrats to go against their constituents’ wishes.