With the government shutdown over, President Obama took the opportunity to lecture his political opposition about the way government is supposed to work: he’s supposed to dictate, and others are supposed to remain silent. Speaking from the White House on Thursday, he paid lip service to the political process:
“I recognize there are folks on the other side who think that my policies are misguided. That’s putting it mildly. That’s OK. That’s democracy. That’s how it works. We can debate those differences vigorously, passionately, in good faith, through the normal democratic process. And sometimes we’ll be just too far apart to forge an agreement.”
But then he got to his punch line: if others disagree with him, particularly on Obamacare, they need to shut up:
“You don’t like a particular policy or a particular president? Then argue for your position. Go out there and win an election. Push to change it. But don’t break it. Don’t break what our predecessors spent over two centuries building. That’s not being faithful to what this country’s about.”
The political process, for Obama, is not about debate. He won re-election, and his re-election is the only election that matters, even though House Republicans and Senate Republicans also won elections. Elections certainly have consequences – but for President Obama, the only consequence to his re-election victory is the ability to ram through his agenda without any serious opposition from those who disagree with him.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the New York Times bestseller “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013).