As a form of political warfare, sabotage varies from acts that require detailed planning utilizing specially trained operatives, to obstruction of legislation based on insignificant logical fallacies. Republicans planned to sabotage the economy on Inauguration Day 2009, and their specially trained operatives, congressional Republicans, deliberately placed obstacles to economic recovery as a means of portraying President Obama as ineffective at reversing the effects of the catastrophic Bush-Republican Great Recession. Subsequently, every measure the President and Democrats proposed to stimulate the economy and create jobs were held up or blocked by inserting unrelated amendments the Republicans knew Democrats would not accept, and their criminal hostage maneuvers preventing a more robust recovery that political observers have known for three years is finally recognized by American voters.
In a recent poll, 49% of all voters believe the Republicans are intentionally “stalling efforts to jumpstart the economy to ensure that President Obama does not win re-election,” and that includes 61% of moderates and 75% of liberals. Republicans telegraphed their agenda when Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said, “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president,” and not create jobs, help struggling Americans, or jumpstart the economy. True to his word, for a change, McConnell and his cohort blocked, obstructed, or added unrelated amendments to legislation Republicans normally support and would definitely hasten economic recovery, and their tactics as a governing strategy have retarded recovery and killed millions of Americans’ jobs.
In early March, in a rare bi-partisan move, Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and James Inhofe (R-OK) collaborated on a transportation bill that will save 1.9 million construction jobs and create 1 million more. The bill will upgrade and repair the nation’s crumbling infrastructure that is crucial for business and Americans to move around the country. Now in the Republican-controlled House, the obstructionist Republicans are complicating passage of the bill by inserting extraneous issues to enrich a foreign oil company, U.S. refineries, and Speaker of the House John Boehner. The Keystone XL pipeline has become an obsession with Republicans whose priority is rewarding the oil industry, and effectively increase the price of gasoline at the pumps, jeopardize critical aquifer supplies, and employ 2,500 Canadian pipeline construction specialists. The benefit to the American people, the economy, and American jobs is negligible, if not non-existent, and besides moving dirty tar sands across environmentally fragile farmland, it redirects oil from the Midwest that will reduce supplies for Americans as Canada’s refined oil is sold on the foreign market. There is no connection between the Keystone XL pipeline and the transportation bill except that Republicans are using it to obstruct 2.9 million American’s jobs unless Democrats join Republicans in repaying the oil industry for supporting Republicans.
Conservatives such as Jim DeMint accused Democrats of creating a “fiscal catastrophe in the near future” with the transportation bill because he considers it “unnecessary federal spending,” and just another “stimulus” to create 2.9 million jobs and get the economy moving forward. DeMint, like all Republicans, claimed the bill shifts federal spending away from creating jobs elsewhere (read – tax cuts for job creators). The current assault on spending on government-funded jobs is in line with Willard Romney and Rush Limbaugh’s assertion that government-funded jobs are a drain on the economy that could be better spent giving wealthy “job creators” greater tax breaks.
For the past three-and-a-half years Republicans have went all out to prevent President Obama from fixing the economic catastrophe they created, and their assault on Americans’ jobs is remarkable for the party that promised their highest priority after the 2010 midterm elections was “jobs, jobs, jobs.” Instead, they voted against, obstructed, or blocked measures like the stimulus that created well over 3.4 million jobs, all of the President’s jobs bills, and worked to kill nearly 800,000 public sector jobs under the guise of creating jobs. Their entire focus has been sabotaging economic recovery and giving the oil industry, corporations, and the wealthy more taxpayer entitlements while going around the country telling Americans President Obama is clueless on job creation. However, the poll showing that Americans are aware the GOP is intentionally obstructing economic recovery may signal that the public will not support another assault on Americans in November.
If Americans think Republicans are only obstructing jobs and economic recovery to prevent President Obama from winning a second term, they are naïve beyond belief. It is true they will use any means to defeat Obama in November, but their goal of eliminating living-wage jobs, decimating social safety nets, and rewarding the wealthy, oil industry, and corporations will increase exponentially if they control both houses of Congress and the White House. Romney proposes giving $10.7 trillion in tax cuts that primarily benefit the wealthiest 1/10 of 1%, and eliminating several government agencies to replace them with for-profit private enterprises. That is part of their reason for obstructing and sabotaging the economy to prevent President Obama’s reelection, because without a Democrat to staunch their agenda, there is no end to the damage they will wreak on the economy and the people.
The Republicans obstructing, sabotaging, and blocking economic recovery should be tried and convicted of treason under Article III, Section 3, where it says a subversive act that “weakens the power of the United States,” is treason, and requires two witnesses for conviction. After over three years deliberately weakening the economy, there is little doubt Republicans are guilty of treason and 49% of voters agree they are purposely obstructing recovery. The legal definition of treason is “the betrayal of one's own country by waging war against it,” and by their own admission, Republicans are campaigning on an anti-government platform. In lieu of trying Republicans for treason, the American people have the ability to do the next best thing and vote every obstructionist, anti-government Republican out of office for their three-year campaign to destroy the economy.