To say the United States of America is politically polarized is an understatement.

People are divided over government and the role it should have in our society. The big issue is the debate over “less government”. It is a fair questions to ask about how large a role government plays in our lives.

Why then has this become an issue of good versus evil?

Answering that question is like peeling layers of onions to get to the heart of it all. Despite all the discomfort, we still like onions. They make your eyes water. The smell will be on your hands no matter how many times you try and wash it off. The odor will be in the air long enough for you to know an onion has been cut.

Despite how horrible this question is, we should be willing to examine it.

There are some who believe this country was founded on religious principles, and seek to impose their beliefs as law on the rest of Americans (looking at you, Mike Pence).

That does not sound like “Freedom of Religion” as established in the First Amendment. This is Religious Right saddling their views on those that are supposed to have the freedom to choose. This resembles more of a “broader use” of government power, not less.

That is just one example of evil and who owns it.

How Children Act

Anyone that raises children knows how they act. The one common attribute parents can expect from their offspring is they will get away with anything they can. Morals and a sense of good character must be instilled in them so they make the correct decisions.

A common tactic for children use to avoid punishment is to lie and place blame elsewhere. Remember the childhood friend that threw the rock an broke the window but blamed someone else? That is a strategy straight out of the Republican playbook.

One example of this is the war in Iraq. The administration of George W. Bush invaded Iraq in 2003. ISIS was born from this invasion, yet Republicans try to blame President Obama for Bush’s invasion and the birth of ISIS. Barrack Obama was elected five years later in 2008. Republicans own the creation of ISIS.

There are many more examples like this, and we will expose them. By the conclusion of this screed, it should be obvious who threw the proverbial rock.

History will illuminate that this is the modus operandi of the GOP. There is a pattern of their behavior that has existed since Richard Nixon-R employed the “Southern Strategy” to win the White House in the 1968 election.

Fact over Fiction

This past week, Attorney General William Barr-R ignored the House Judiciary Committee. He was to be questioned regarding “The Mueller Report“, which detailed the findings on the investigation on the Russian involvement in the 2016 Presidential Election. It also reports on Donald Trump’s involvement in this affair.

Barr’s reason for snubbing his nose at the committee was because Chairman Jerrold Nadler-D brought in staff attorneys to question him. In my lifetime, Congress has relied on this method numerous times. Staff attorneys were used in the Watergate investigations. They were used by Republicans during the confirmation process of Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Claiming that this method is improper is insane. Even Sarah Sanders should feel stupid for defending this was a disrespectful move.

The ranking member of the House Judicial Committee, Doug Collins-R claimed Democrats did not want Barr at the hearing because they brought in staff attorneys to question the AG. This guy is not afraid to show his stupidity. Not only has this theory been debunked by history, it is illogical to hold a hearing if you do not want the witness to appear.

Let me just state that Mr. Collins is a moron and his behavior is childish.

What the two sides of the coin resemble

Since the 2016 midterm election, there have been a multitude of issues of importance to the voters. These are significant challenges facing our nation like climate change, living wages, income inequality, citizens united and “me too“. This last issue is of importance because it has taken on a partisanship life of its own.

#MeToo was born from the experiences of the millions of women who have been victimized by bosses, authority figures, friends and lovers. Violating another human being is possibly the worst act one can commit. As a society, cannot allow an entire segment to be marginalized. This issue has become a dichotomy between Republican and Democratic politics.

Several women accused Sen. Al Franken D-MN of sexual misconduct. The elected Democrats in Washington D.C. called for him to resign amid these allegations. While he succumbed to the pressure, he maintains his innocence.

On the Republican side, there is a totally opposite approach to this issue. During the campaign trail leading up to the 2016 election, over 20 women came forth alleging the Republican Presidential candidate had acted inappropriately. He denied it, and Republicans never acted as if this were inappropriate. Republicans lambasted Bill Clinton-D over similar issues.

During the Special Election in Alabama for the vacant Senate seat, Doug Jones-D and Roy Moore-R were on the ballot. Eight women came forward accusing Moore of sexual misconduct while they were under the age of legal consent. Donald Trump supported Moore claiming, “he strongly denies it”. No accountability.

Brett Kavanaugh-R was nominated to fill a vacant seat on the United States Supreme Court. When he was nominated, a prominent doctor, Christine Blasey Ford, came forth with her allegations against Kavanaugh. During the hearings on his nomination, Dr. Ford was permitted to present testimony on this issue. When Kavanaugh’s opportunity to speak before the Senate Judiciary Committee, he went on a political tirade, demonstrating his hatred and contempt for the Democratic Party.

The Playbook

Looking at these examples, an obvious contrast in the approach to this issue emerges. Democrats have addressed the issue with much less tolerance than Republicans. The #MeToo Movement endorses more Democrats than Republicans on the campaign trail because of this difference.

Republicans on the other hand use another approach. Their platform relies on evasive maneuvering through the practice of denying, lieing and misleading. The women who have spoken against Republican candidates have been treated with disgust, labeled as manipulative and framed as a suspect. These are bully tactics.

To the elected officials on the right, power and control are all that matter. Laws are for suckers, or a way to stack the odds against the competition. The GOP does not adhere to the rule of law outlined in our Constitution.

The fact Merrick Garland never had confirmation hearings is the perfect example. Obstruction has become another tool used by Republicans. Never in the history of this country was a Supreme Court nominee denied this process, until Republicans did it under Mitch McConnell’s watch.

All or Nothing

Election cycles bring candidates and their parties into focus. It can elevate the best, or strip bare the worst. Both parties makes their case for why they deserve our vote. Campaigns also use negative tactics to stomp an opponent. The problem is, truth is not a requirement in campaign advertising.

It is laughable to believe a Presidential candidate would run a criminal enterprise from the basement of a pizza joint that had no basement. Yet daily there are those “Chicken Little” minded people believing it. The sky is not falling, but they insist on claiming it will.

With all the dissemination of rhetoric and propaganda, who are we to believe?

One topic of conversation is who played more golf, Obama or Trump. Follow the reporters that are on the ground reporting the story. Not the ones paid by television networks, but local reporters that work for print media. These journalists write hoping to have their articles made public. Those are where local stories become national, like the water crisis in Flint, MI.

By the way, Trump has played more golf than Obama.

Initial ballots will be cast in Iowa in less than a year. The stakes are truly all or nothing at this point.

Majority Leader McConnell-R said on the Senate floor that the Mueller case is closed. This is putting partisan politics on display. Over 400 former federal prosecutors that have read the redacted Mueller Report are in agreement on one thing. Chapter two of the report illuminates the case of Obstruction of Justice against Trump. (700 former prosecutors at the time of this edit)

The only reason the report did not make the case for indictment is explained in the first two pages. Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) prohibit legal charges being levied on a sitting President. Mueller was explicitly instructed not to conclude chargeable offenses per these guidelines. Mind you these are not law. Under current Republican power, this issue will not be addressed.

If Republicans continue to hold power in the Senate, there will be no checks and balances in government. McConnell proved he will protect his party over the Constitution. Donald Trump commits impeachable offenses daily refusing to acknowledge the demands from Congress conducting their constitutional responsibility of oversight. .

Donald Trump and Republicans think this only applies when they have the gavel.

Truth and Justice are the soul of America

Weighing the evidence, it is clear Republicans are solely concerned with power. Those that seek power corruptly will corruptly use that power once obtained. Mitch McConnell proved this with Merrick Garland. Donald Trump continues to prove this daily with the lies he tells the American people. And now William Barr has given the middle finger to the House of Representatives.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is guilty of this, too. In his letter to the Secretary, Chairman Neal gives the statute for his authority to make this request. There is no ambiguity in the law. Mnuchin refuses to acknowledge authority from Democrats.

Don McGahn, former White House Counsel and now private citizen has been subpoenaed before Congress. The White House is attempting to prevent him from testifying. They are trying to assert “Executive privilege” to block his testimony. The legal problem with this assertion is that privilege was waived when McGahn was given the “green light” to be deposed before Robert Mueller.

What is at stake in America is the soul and character of its reputation in the world. The facts are not partisan. People that “yeah, but what about her emails” are refusing to look in the mirror because they do not want to see the hypocrisy looking back at them.

In November 2020, the United States has the opportunity and responsibility to elect representatives that will uphold the Constitution above a political party.

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Gene Smith

Gene Smith is a Chief Campaign Strategist living in Arizona. He is a Juris Doctor, Democratic Campaign Strategist, Elected Precinct Committee person, and Democratic State Committee Member. Currently, Gene serves on the Environmental Caucus.

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