Editor's Choice

Beyond Obamacare and into the abyss

Obamacare was won not on June 28, 2012 (the day the Supreme Court upheld the individual insurance mandate) or on March 23, 2010 (the day President Obama signed it into law), but rather on November 4, 2008—the day Obama won the presidency.

It’s a cliché to say that elections have consequences, but it’s a cliché for a reason—because it’s demonstrably true. First-term presidents usually achieve at least one major legislative victory.

Obama ignored the economy, failed to pass Cap and Trade and did almost nothing legislatively to pass an immigration bill. But he achieved his main goal: the government take-over of one-sixth of the economy through Obamacare.

Some conservatives are blaming Chief Justice John Roberts for siding with the court’s liberals in affirming Obamacare. But as Chief Justice Roberts wrote in the majority opinion, “It is not [the court’s] job to protect the people from the consequences of their political choices.”

All three branches of government have now put their seal of approval on a law that doesn’t have the support of most Americans. According to a CBS/New York Times poll conducted before the court’s decision was announced, 24 percent of Americans thought the court should uphold the entire law.

The court’s ruling should send a message to any conservatives still deciding whom to vote for, or whether to vote at all: get over it. Mitt Romney may not be your ideal conservative candidate, but the only remaining path to getting rid of Obamacare involves electing Romney and a Republican Senate he can work with.

But just in case conservatives need additional reasons to vote against Obama on Election Day, let’s take a look at what a second Obama term might bring.

Earlier this year, Obama was overheard telling Russian President Dmitry Medvedev that he’d have more “flexibility” to act on a nuclear weapons deal after the election. The implication was

that if Obama wins reelection, he’ll work to implement an unpopular agenda.

Indications are that Obama will indeed pursue a more radically ideological agenda in his second term once he’s free from the moderating influences of a looming election.

In a June 2012 New Yorker article, Ryan Lizza spoke with many top Obama aides and concluded

“Obama has an ambitious second-term agenda.”

First on the agenda: climate change legislation. Lizza reported that Obama “has said that the most important policy he could address in his second term is climate change, one of the few issues that he thinks could fundamentally improve the world decades from now.”

Another item: immigration reform. Of course, Obama has been rebuked legislatively on both climate change and immigration reform. But he’s implemented key parts of both those bills through executive fiat.

Also, as Lizza points out, “If Obama wins, his immediate task will be to settle more than a decade’s worth of deferred arguments about how big the government should be and who should pay for it.”

Less than two months after Election Day—on January 1, 2013—the largest tax increase in American history is scheduled to take place. A month later there will be a replay of the summer 2011 debate over the federal debt ceiling, as the president and Congress will again debate whether or not to raise the amount of money the federal government can borrow.

Many conservatives cannot seem to decide whether Obama is out of his depth, an “amateur,” as Edward Klein suggests in his current best-seller about Obama by the same name, or if he’s an “evil” genius outsmarting Republicans at every turn to implement his socialist agenda. In truth, he’s a little of both—too weak in standing up for America as the world’s sole superpower and yet all too successful and savvy in advancing his radical domestic agenda.

In a second term, Obama would be able to reinforce the laws he signed and the policies he put in place in his first term. He’d be able to continue to fill the federal bureaucracy with Obamites who will remain long after Obama leaves office.

A second term would bring follow up measures, supportive appointments to federal agencies and the courts, and vetoes of any repeal attempts, Obamacare first and foremost.

A second Obama term would be an affirmation of his first term, and a mandate and license to continue to “fundamentally transform” the country.

The imperial president would be emboldened to continue to use the executive branch to implement by fiat pieces of his agenda that Congress will not, including, perhaps, same-sex marriage.

The country is on the brink of a complete loss of the American idea; a second Obama term would push us “forward” (as Obama’s campaign slogan promises) into the abyss.

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