House Republicans rode into the majority on a Tea Party wave in 2010. Americans were rightly unhappy with the crony corporatism of the Obama administration, the overweening redistributionism of a Democratic Congress, and a myopically narrow appeal to the far left by the Democrat-dominated government as a whole. Corruption in particular was a top issue for voters.
In 2012, nothing has changed. According to a June USA Today/Gallup poll, the two top issues on voters’ minds are job creation (understandably, since Obama has failed miserably on that score), and government corruption.
And yet the House Republicans have not launched investigations into the most corrupt and perverse acts of the Obama administration. The House GOP ought to use its power of subpoena to bring before it top administration officials to answer difficult questions about their conduct. Here’s where they should start:
- Libya. The State Department’s disgraceful handling of the security situation at the Benghazi consulate led directly to the death of our ambassador, along with three other Americans. The State Department has stonewalled Freedom of Information Act requests regarding its security procedures, and continues to avoid answering basic questions as to whether unarmed British contractors were in fact providing “security.” President Obama and company continue to maintain the fiction that the attacks in Libya were “spontaneous” and therefore unforeseeable. In the end, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is charged with embassy and ambassador security. If it is found that the State Department had advance warning, that Ambassador Stevens feared that he was on the al Qaeda hit list, and that the State Department did nothing to give him armed protection, she should resign.
- Campaign Violations. President Obama has always blurred the line between administration and campaign. Dating all the way back to 2009, his National Endowment for the Arts was using its sway with artists to stump for support for President Obama. During this campaign, the White House obviously worked hand-in-glove with super PACs to create vicious ads labeling Mitt Romney a murderer, accusing him of killing former GST Steel employee Joe Soptic’s wife of cancer. But in the past few weeks, this tendency to lump together the White House and the Obama campaign has grown intolerable. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius violated the Hatch Act, making openly political statements at a speech before the Human Rights Campaign Gala – and this week, the US Office of Special Counsel admitted as much. Meanwhile, President Obama encouraged donors to hand over $10 million in campaign cash to an associated super PAC – he was asking for more than the allotted $5,000 from donors. Obama has routinely utilized government resources for his own campaign.
- First Amendment Breaches. Back in February 2012, President Obama’s administration and his Democratic allies in Congress mobilized to fight Komen for the Cure, a breast cancer foundation that received no federal tax money. Their sin? They were phasing out association with Planned Parenthood, since Planned Parenthood provided abortions but not mammograms. According to Karen Handel, a top executive at Komen at the time, the organization received a call from Democratic National Committee chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) just days before the media broke the story about the disassociation. Then figures close to the administration bashed Komen relentlessly until they backed down. That’s not unusual. Last week, we saw again the Obama administration’s distaste for the First Amendment when they spent more time, effort and vitriol condemning the makers of an anti-Islam YouTube video than they did condemning the perpetrators of a murderous global assault on our embassies and consulates. And just in case you missed it, the Department of Justice has been coordinating with far-left nonprofit hit group Media Matters for America to target conservative commentators.
- Fast and Furious Coverup. The media claimed today that Attorney General Eric Holder had been exonerated by an inspector general’s report. That was false. The report actually said that the White House stonewalled requests for interviews with key White House officials.
Launching these investigations would represent the pursuit of justice for the American people.