Since Obama won the 2008 election the Republican leaders have had one goal; make President Obama a one-term president. Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell has repeatedly said his mission is to remove Obama from office. He believes this is more important than solving problems like record unemployment, growing income disparity, multiple wars overseas and a healthcare system in need of serious reform. Even with these problems McConnell and the rest of the Republican leadership still feel making Obama a one-term president is top priority.
So what does this mean? It means any success Obama does have is in direct contrast with the goals of the Republicans. This is why we continue to see congress doing nothing and threatening to shut down the government over normal routine legislation i.e. raising the debt ceiling. However, even with the Republican leadership’s anti Obama campaign the President has had many significant accomplishments – the passing of healthcare reform, the removal of 2 dictators and a steady return to normalcy in the economy.
The economy is returning to normal. The most recent jobs report has the unemployment rate down to 8.5%; the lowest rate since early 2009. Along with the improving economy, Obama’s approval rate has steadily been going up since December. The Republican plan is not working.
The consequences of their plan not working and the fact it is now officially the election year means congress will be more stubborn and try to prevent even more proposals. In the coming months there are important issues at hand like the payroll tax cut that could have a significant affect on businesses and individuals. It is not going to be any surprise come late February when the Republicans will be attempting some block to extend the tax cut for a full year. So all the politics we have seen in congress is going to be amplified. And unfortunately this is being done strictly to make Obama look ineffective.
So this is why I am okay with some loophole government policies. Obama has been put in a tough position where Republicans are angry he is not doing enough yet continue to reject anything he proposes. Therefore I am in favor of his most recent recess appointment of Richard Cordray to be head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. I admit this move is unprecedented and very political. But I also believe the CFPB is important to our economic recovery. A huge contributing factor to the Great Recession was sub-prime mortgages, which were written in a complicated and convoluted manner. People then signed those agreements without truly understanding them and then ultimately saw their homes foreclosed on. The CFPB is there to prevent exactly that. It is there to help consumers and prevent a future crisis. The CFPB was part of the Dodd-Frank Act and it is good to see that it is finally being put into practice. Republicans have been trying to stop this appointment of Cordray for months now. So I am glad Obama used this loophole. The President may have to find more loopholes if he really wants to get something accomplished in this coming year.