Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Iran: This is a war we can prevent; I call(ed) the GOP a bunch of babies that act like Bam, Bam From The Flinstones

Forty-seven Republican senators sent a letter to Iran this week in an effort to derail diplomacy and put the United States on a path toward yet another war.

You can read what I have written about on the Morning Joe Recap, but this is so calculated to be so political that its insulting to humans with brains. I described it to be like that bam, Bam character on the Flinstones and I maintain that the POTUS will out any deal on the table for the Congress to approve or disapprove. This letter sent to the Iran Ayatollah (the same one that tweeted that they want to decimate Israel mind you) was childish. It was sophomoric as someone on the show (Morning Joe) said today. Its a farce. Its a joke. If you want to debate the deal, wait for the deal to get done. 

Click here to email your senators your view.

Instead of asserting their authority to end existing wars, they claimed the power to undo any agreement reached between the U.S. and Iran. They pointed out that, while U.S. presidents serve no more than 8 years, senators can hold an "unlimited number of 6-year terms."

Click here to let your two senators know whether you prefer diplomacy or war with Iran.

The last thing the United States or the world needs is yet another war. Congress is in the middle of debating whether to "authorize" some of the existing wars. This is not the time to be sabotaging negotiations with Iran in any way. Senator Corker's bill (S. 615) to allow rejection of a deal and the Kirk-Menendez bill (S. 1881) to impose still harsher sanctions must be rejected.

Click here to tell your senators that they should assert their authority to end wars, not to provoke new ones, and that senators who do that will be more likely to earn our support for an "unlimited number of 6-year terms."

After sending the emails to your senators, please forward this message to your friends. You can also share it from the webpage after taking the action yourself.

Cheney: Congress must not interfere with the president's Iran policy

In less than a week, congressional Republicans have taken two unprecedented steps to undermine the foreign policy of a sitting American president. Last Tuesday, they offered Capitol Hill as a global stage to a foreign leader—Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel—to sabotage the U.S.-led nuclear talks with Iran. And this weekend, 47 GOP senators sent a letter to the leadership in Tehran warning the Islamic Republic that Congress—or the next president—could blow up any nuclear deal at any time.

But one Republican leader—Dick Cheney—furiously condemned congressional interference with the president's policy toward Iran. Condemned it, that is, provided the president was Ronald Reagan and the issue wasn't limiting Iran's arsenal, but enhancing it.
That's right. In the wake of the arms-for-hostages scandal that engulfed President Reagan in 1986, the minority Republican response to the congressional Iran-Contra investigation declared that Congress, not the White House, had done something wrong. Joined then by Utah Senator Orrin Hatch (who also signed this week's letter) among other GOP leaders, Cheney didn't just denounce the majority's findings as "clearly cast in such a partisan tone," but insisted President Reagan had the constitutional authority to ignore the congressional ban on aid to the Nicaraguan Contras:
"Judgments about the Iran-Contra Affair ultimately must rest upon one's views about the proper roles of Congress and the President in foreign policy. ... [T]hroughout the Nation's history, Congress has accepted substantial exercises of Presidential power -- in the conduct of diplomacy, the use of force and covert action -- which had no basis in statute and only a general basis in the Constitution itself. ... [M]uch of what President Reagan did in his actions toward Nicaragua and Iran were constitutionally protected exercises of inherent Presidential powers. ... [T]he power of the purse ... is not and was never intended to be a license for Congress to usurp Presidential powers and functions."
The Iran-Contra scandal, as you'll recall, almost laid waste to the Reagan presidency. Desperate to free U.S. hostages held by Iranian proxies in Lebanon, President Reagan provided weapons Tehran badly needed in its long war with Saddam Hussein (who, of course, was backed by the United States). In a clumsy and illegal attempt to skirt U.S. law, the proceeds of those sales were then funneled to the contras fighting the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. And as the New York Times recalled, Reagan's fiasco started with an emissary bearing gifts from the Gipper himself.
Head below the fold to read how.
A retired Central Intelligence Agency official has confirmed to the Senate Intelligence Committee that on the secret mission to Teheran last May, Robert C. McFarlane and his party carried a Bible with a handwritten verse from President Reagan for Iranian leaders.
According to a person who has read the committee's draft report, the retired C.I.A. official, George W. Cave, an Iran expert who was part of the mission, said the group had 10 falsified passports, believed to be Irish, and a key-shaped cake to symbolize the anticipated ''opening'' to Iran.
But in his November 18, 1987 press conference unveiling the minority report, Cheney rejected any notion of wrongdoing by the Reagan administration. "The bottom line, however, is that the mistakes ... were just that," Rep. Cheney announced to the nation, "mistakes in judgment, and nothing more."
There was no constitutional crisis, no systematic disrespect for ''the rule of law,'' no grand conspiracy, and no Administration-wide dishonesty or coverup. In fact, the evidence will not support any of the more hysterical conclusions the committees' report tries to reach.
In 1989, the future defense secretary and vice president made it clear that his objection to Capitol Hill butting into the president's constitutional powers to conduct diplomacy applied to every issue and every occupant of the Oval Office. As he put it in an address to the American Enterprise Institute:
[C]ongressional overreaching has systematic policy effects. It is important to be clear at the outset that my argument is about systematic effects, not individual policy disagreements. For example, Congress' efforts to dictate diplomatic bargaining tactics, as well as the efforts by individual members to conduct back channel negotiations on their own, make it extremely difficult for the country to sustain a consistent bargaining posture for an extended time period, whomever the President and whatever the policy. [Emphasis original.]
Fast-forwarding to 2015, it's no wonder Democratic leaders are outraged by what White House Press Secretary John Earnest decried as "the continuation of a partisan strategy to undermine the president's authority." And if was an honest man, Dick Cheney would be outraged, too.



The Republican Freshmen Bankrolled by AT&T and Verizon

A comic by Tom Tomorrow

"Congressional Republicans: Your attempts to usurp and undermine the administration's foreign policy engagements amount to sabotage and show a profound and shocking disreprect for the Office of the Presidency. You're out of line. Show some damn respect!"
We get it already. Republicans don’t like President Obama. Never have, never will. And hey, they don’t have to -- that’s their prerogative.
But they DO have to show adequate respect for the Office of the Presidency and the Executive Branch’s authority to, among other things, conduct American foreign policy.
Congressional Republicans are showing profound disrespect for the president’s office in their attempts to sabotage the U.S.’s delicate foreign affairs engagements.
First, led by John Boehner, they went around President Obama to allow Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu to use America’s Congress as a political backdrop for his case against the U.S. administration’s diplomatic efforts with Iran. Now, 47 Republican senators have sent an open letter to Iran trying to poison diplomatic talks by warning that any deal struck with the U.S. would likely have an expiration date of when this president leaves office.
Enough already. Don’t mince the words that come to mind when all of us read or hear about this news.
From BloombergView:
Organized by freshman Senator Tom Cotton [of Arkansas] and signed by the chamber's entire party leadership as well as potential 2016 presidential contenders Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Rand Paul, the letter is meant not just to discourage the Iranian regime from signing a deal but also to pressure the White House into giving Congress some authority over the process.
"It has come to our attention while observing your nuclear negotiations with our government that you may not fully understand our constitutional system … Anything not approved by Congress is a mere executive agreement," the senators wrote. "The next president could revoke such an executive agreement with the stroke of a pen and future Congresses could modify the terms of the agreement at any time."
Could you imagine if 47 Democratic senators had pulled this kind of stunt under President Bush? Republicans, Fox News and the entire right-wing movement would have led a nationwide freak out beyond imagination.
The New York Daily News already labeled the 47 GOP senators who signed the letter "traitors" on its front page.

Add your name now with one click. Tell Republicans: Show some damn respect!

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