If you thought the polarization and resentment that characterized Barack Obama’s relationship with the GOP Congress would end with this year’s election, think again.
Republicans are expected to retain control of the House of Representatives, and should Hillary Clinton win in November the roughly 40 members of the ultra-conservative House Freedom Caucus are planning to make the Democrat’s life nothing short of miserable.
From the Associated Press:
They’re promising to keep investigating Clinton’s email issues even if she ends up in the White House. Some conservatives are even saying openly that impeachment hearings should be an option against Clinton.
“There probably ought to be,” said Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala.
Clinton, of course, has spent plenty of time in Congress’ crosshairs over the last several years. There was the committee that for two years investigated her actions as secretary of state surrounding 2012 Benghazi attack and more recently a series of high-profile hearings looking into her off-the-books email server.
The AP highlights the competing pressures that could confront a President Clinton and House Speaker Paul Ryan, who’s expected to retain his gavel in January:
Their relationship faces deep constraints even before it begins, in part because of a single group of people — the several dozen deeply conservative lawmakers who are keeping Ryan on a short leash and who are among the Republicans pushing for ongoing investigations of Clinton.
“If Hillary Clinton is elected president this Congress has to reassert itself in the path that the founding fathers imagined,” said Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, echoing a frequent observation from House Republicans who lament that Congress has ceded its constitutional authority under President Barack Obama.
Even before the election, the Freedom Caucus is inducing headaches for Ryan. The group is looking to force a vote to impeach the head of the IRS and they’re urging the speaker to reject a joint government spending-Zika deal that’s beginning to take shape in the Senate.
Others just wish the Republican nominee would change the subject.
From The Washington Post:
Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) said that Trump’s comments were distracting voters from the message that marks the Republican nominee’s “high ground,” which is talking about “the failures of Hillary Clinton’s reset [with Russia] and what that did.”
Clinton headed up the State Department when the Obama administration attempted to refresh relations with Russia in a 2009 “reset” that most agreed had failed by the time Russia annexed Crimea in 2014. Perdue said Trump should focus his message more on “what we didn’t do in Ukraine, what we didn’t do in Crimea, and what we haven’t done in Syria” than on his personal affinity for Putin.
“I remember literally telling him, ‘It should be an easy day.’
With the 15th anniversary of 9/11 fast approaching, a new trove of information is providing a new window into how President George W. Bush and his closest aides responded in the immediate aftermath of the attack.
Here’s a snippet from Yahoo:
Flooded with inaccurate reports — of a credible threat to Air Force One, of a car bomb at the State Department, of an airliner crashing near Camp David, of a “high-speed object” screaming toward his Texas ranch — Bush pressed intelligence officials for information and resolved to try to reassure Americans even as security concerns kept him away from Washington, D.C., for most of the day.
Speaking of this weekend’s anniversary, the Georgia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations announced it will join with interfaith partners to co-host a memorial service for the victims of the biggest terror attack on U.S. soil in Decatur on Sunday.
“As Georgians of diverse faith traditions, we feel a special obligation to unite as one and pray for the thousands of men, women and children who lost their lives on 9/11,” said Edward Ahmed Mitchell, executive director of the Muslim civil liberties group.
The event comes fresh off the group’s bare-knuckle fight to protect a proposed mosque in Newton County that’s drawn national and international headlines. County commissioners put the plans on hold, and CAIR said federal prosecutors have taken the first step toward opening an investigation into the vote.
New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker will be headlining a fundraiser for Hillary Clinton in Atlanta in October after skipping out on a similar event last month.
More details can be found here.
State House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams and former gubernatorial candidate Jason Carter will be on hand this Saturday as Democrat Darryl Payton kicks off his campaign for the 111th state House district in Henry County, where he’s challenging Republican state Rep. Brian Strickland.
We’ll have more details for you later this morning.
Georgia Senate candidates Johnny Isakson and Jim Barksdale have largely hesitated to throw personal barbs at one another or the opposing party’s nominee for president on the campaign trail, so the their parties are stepping in to do it for them.
Take a look at the competing emails from the Georgia Republican and Democratic parties yesterday:
The former took aim at Barksdale’s Bernie Sanders-esque rhetoric:
“If Georgia voters are looking for Bernie 2.0, they can look elsewhere. The liberal moneyman who made millions off of Wall Street, defense contractors, and the same big corporations that Democrats decry is merely putting on a show. The only agenda he’s looking to advance is his own.”
Meanwhile, DuBose Porter, Georgia’s Democratic Party chair, slammed Isakson and the state’s GOP for refusing to disavow Donald Trump:
“The Georgia GOP can’t keep straddling the fence. Their silence has become a seal of approval. If the top of your ticket praises foreign dictators yet insults our own military, push politics aside and do the right thing. They should denounce Donald Trump now.”
We told you yesterday about Newt Gingrich’s upcoming town hall at Kennesaw State University, which led our colleague to point out that this isn’t the onetime Georgia lawmaker’s first brush with the university.
A peek into the AJC’s archives show that Gingrich taught a course there back in 1993 that caused some at the time to wonder whether he planned to run for president … in 1996.
From Jill Vejnoska’s story dated Nov. 28, 1993:
Frankly, a lot of people aren’t quite sure what to make of Professor Gingrich, whose “Renewing American Civilization” concluded with Saturday’s final exam.
He’s fought tooth and nail (and against the heavily Democratic appointee state Board of Regents) to keep the class going, to the point of moving it to northwest Cherokee County and tiny Reinhardt College beginning in January…
Gingrich said, early on, he hoped the class would generate by the 1996 presidential election some 200,000 political activists committed to ending what he views as the “failed” welfare state. Some political observers think Gingrich may even have a specific candidate in mind, namely, Newt Gingrich.
How’s that for a time capsule?