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Barack Hussein Obama: America’s First Anti-Israeli President? UPDATE: The Australian Says Yes

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Is President Barack Obama the first anti-Israeli President in US history?

On a recent Fox News appearance, retired US Army Colonel Ralph Peters may have been  the initial well-known person in America to claim that President Obama is the “first anti-Israeli President” in US history.  Media Matters, a far left organization funded by billionaire Democrat George Soros, inexplicably posted the video of Peters making the claim and inadvertently feeding oxygen to the narrative.  Here are portions of the comments by Colonel Peters in response to questioning by Megyn Kelly on “America Live” on March 26, 2010:

“This is something about a chip on the President’s shoulder…Israel wants to live in peace with its neighbors, its neighbors want Israel destroyed.  The President refuses to understand that…It’s become a credo of the left…that Israel is always the oppressor and that Palestinian terrorists are freedom fighters…You have to look at the President’s background…. His mother, extremely left, his university chums, on the left, Bill Ayers, left, 20 years with Reverend Wright.  All of their doctrines say the Palestinians are wonderful and the Israelis are basically Nazis…and I think the President has got that by osmosis… Beyond the armchair psychoanalysis, you have to look at what people do, listen to what they say, and this is our first anti-Israeli President.  Its bewildering its astonishing.

Colonel Peters appears to be speaking without an evidentiary basis about Obama’s mother and university chums, as no evidence has surfaced that ties them to anti-Israeli thinking. However, Bill Ayers, who was associated with the President for many years, recently demonstrated his anti-Israeli thinking by being “one of 431 academics to sign a petition calling for divestment, boycott and sanctions against Israel.” The Reverend Wright, who was the President’s “spiritual adviser” for decades, is a longtime strong supporter of well-known anti-Semite Louis Farrakan. Beyond those two individuals, Obama had a long and deep relationship with Palestinian interest groups for many years during his time in Chicago, as epitomized by his close relationship with Palestinian Professor Rashid Khalidi.   Obama’s relationship with Khalidi became a flash point of the 2008 campaign as the LA Times refused to release video it is holding of Obama at a going away party for Khalidi, who was leaving to take a job at Columbia University, where many Palestinian supporters said quite untoward things about Israel.  Here’s the LA Times report on the party:

It was a celebration of Palestinian culture — a night of music, dancing and a dash of politics. Local Arab Americans were bidding farewell to Rashid Khalidi, an internationally known scholar, critic of Israel and advocate for Palestinian rights, who was leaving town for a job in New York. A special tribute came from Khalidi’s friend and frequent dinner companion, the young state Sen. Barack Obama. Speaking to the crowd, Obama reminisced about meals prepared by Khalidi’s wife, Mona, and conversations that had challenged his thinking.

His many talks with the Khalidis, Obama said, had been “consistent reminders to me of my own blind spots and my own biases. . . . It’s for that reason that I’m hoping that, for many years to come, we continue that conversation — a conversation that is necessary not just around Mona and Rashid’s dinner table,” but around “this entire world.” Today, five years later, Obama is a U.S. senator from Illinois who expresses a firmly pro-Israel view of Middle East politics, pleasing many of the Jewish leaders and advocates for Israel whom he is courting in his presidential campaign. The dinner conversations he had envisioned with his Palestinian American friend have ended. He and Khalidi have seen each other only fleetingly in recent years.

And yet the warm embrace Obama gave to Khalidi, and words like those at the professor’s going-away party, have left some Palestinian American leaders believing that Obama is more receptive to their viewpoint than he is willing to say. Their belief is not drawn from Obama’s speeches or campaign literature, but from comments that some say Obama made in private and from his association with the Palestinian American community in his hometown of Chicago, including his presence at events where anger at Israeli and U.S. Middle East policy was freely expressed.

At Khalidi’s 2003 farewell party, for example, a young Palestinian American recited a poem accusing the Israeli government of terrorism in its treatment of Palestinians and sharply criticizing U.S. support of Israel. If Palestinians cannot secure their own land, she said, “then you will never see a day of peace.” One speaker likened “Zionist settlers on the West Bank” to Osama bin Laden, saying both had been “blinded by ideology.”

Rashid Khalidi, former friend of President Obama, has strong anti-Israeli views which may have influenced the President during their many social engagements

Considering the facts laid out by the LA Times above, it is easy to understand why the video of the Khalidi party would have made for interesting viewing, especially to see Obama’s reaction to the virulently anti-Israel statements made there as noted by the LA Times. However, the most important fact from this reporting is that many Palestinian American leaders believed in 2008 that Obama as President would be “more receptive to their viewpoint than he is willing to say” based on “comments that some say Obama made in private” and his long term association with the Palestinian-American community in Chicago. Indeed, considering the recent “humiliation” of Israel’s democratically elected leader, Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu (more on that later), by President Obama at the White House, this 2008 comment by a Palestinian-American leader appears prophetic:

But his presence at such events, as he worked to build a political base in Chicago, has led some Palestinian leaders to believe that he might deal differently with the Middle East than either of his opponents for the White House.”I am confident that Barack Obama is more sympathetic to the position of ending the occupation than either of the other candidates,” said Hussein Ibish, a senior fellow for the American Task Force on Palestine, referring to the Israeli presence in the West Bank and Gaza Strip that began after the 1967 war…. “That’s my personal opinion,” Ibish said, “and I think it for a very large number of circumstantial reasons, and what he’s said.”

In his defense, Obama at the time of the publication of the April 2008 LA Times piece “called himself a ‘stalwart’ supporter of the Jewish state and its security needs” and his chief strategist David Axelrod had this to say:

“Barack’s belief is that it’s important to understand other points of view, even if you can’t agree with them,” said his longtime political strategist, David Axelrod. Obama “can disagree without shunning or demonizing those with other views,” he said. “That’s far different than the suggestion that he somehow tailors his view.”

The video of the Khalidi going away party remains under lock and key at the LA Times to this day, adding an element of mystery to the analysis of Obama’s true feelings towards the Jewish state. However, the recent meeting at the White House between President Obama and Prime Minimster Bibi Netanyahu provides some fresh, direct evidence of the President’s feelings towards Israel, as described by the British press, which is much more willing to honestly report on Obama’s activities than the American media:

For a head of government to visit the White House and not pose for photographers is rare. For a key ally to be left to his own devices while the President withdraws to have dinner in private was, until this week, unheard of. Yet that is how Binyamin Netanyahu was treated by President Obama on Tuesday night, according to Israeli reports on a trip viewed in Jerusalem as a humiliation.

After failing to extract a written promise of concessions on settlements, Mr Obama walked out of his meeting with Mr Netanyahu but invited him to stay at the White House, consult with advisers and “let me know if there is anything new”, a US congressman, who spoke to the Prime Minister, said. “It was awful,” the congressman said. One Israeli newspaper called the meeting “a hazing in stages”, poisoned by such mistrust that the Israeli delegation eventually left rather than risk being eavesdropped on a White House telephone line. Another said that the Prime Minister had received “the treatment reserved for the President of Equatorial Guinea”.

The American media, of course, completely ignored the shameful treatment of the democratically elected leader of Israel by Obama’s White House, although CentristNet did issue a piece comparing the treatment of Israel’s democratically elected leader to the treatment of Saudi’s dictator King Abdullah by Obama.   Apparently angered by Netanyahu’s failure to immediately agree to Obama’s demands for an immediate freeze to construction in East Jerusalem, Obama left the Prime Minister to go have dinner without him, stating that ““I’m still around” and “Let me know if there is anything new” as he left the Prime Minister.

Obviously, this type of extraordinarily harsh treatment of the democratically elected leader of one of America’s closest allies, Israel, in the White House is strong evidence that President Obama may indeed have negative feelings towards Israel, perhaps the most negative feelings of any occupant who’s ever occupied the Oval Office, as theorized by Colonel Peters. Perhaps the many years of hearing from Khalidi, Ayers, Wright and others about the “abuses” of the Israelis and the righteous nature of the Palestinians had an effect on Obama, and led him to the harsh treatment of the Israeli prime minister.

Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu Must Be Troubled by the Failure of the Obama Administration to Take Serious Action to Stop Iranian Nuclear Proliferation Despite Many Assurances

Indeed, from the Israeli perspective, the Obama Administration has been quite disappointing, if not infuriating, regarding its failure to take any significant action to contain or rollback the Iranian push to acquire nuclear weapons. Obama’s first meeting as President with Netanyahu resulted in a pledge to work on negotiations with the Iranians until the end of 2009, and then move towards strong sanctions thereafter if negotiations did not bear fruit. Obviously, Obama has not made such sanctions a priority since the turn of the year, which must be quite unnerving to our Israeli allies. Indeed, Iranian nuclear proliferation is the number one national security threat to Israel, not the Palestinian issue, and Bibi stated as much to then-candidate Obama when the two met in July 2008:

One substantial piece of evidence is the conversation that occurred earlier last week at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem between two men some might think are on opposite sides of the spectrum: the supposedly diplomatic Barack Obama and the uber-hawkish Bibi Netanyahu, head of the Likud Party and a fair bet to return to the prime minister’s office. According to Netanyahu advisor Uzi Arad—a former Mossad official who was present at the 45-minute talk—Obama agreed with Netanyahu that “the paramount and most urgent issue is Iran,” and that “a nuclear Iran is unacceptable not only to Israel but to the United States.”

Netanyahu “also made it clear to him that on the Iranian threat there is no dissension in Israel; this is a national attitude.” In a telephone interview on Thursday, Arad told me that he believed that the Democratic candidate for president concurred with Netanyahu as well about the sequence of events that must occur: On Iran “the clocks and centrifuges are clicking and spinning, and not only is time of the essence but the order of things is as well. Should one fail to neutralize that Iranian threat now, it would undercut anything that would be achieved with the Palestinians, Syria or Lebanon.”

As Arad put it: “If you follow that logic, the current efforts to move on the Palestinian issue are pathetic, because they would not be worth the paper they’re written on if Iran is not contained. If Iran became nuclear it would mean the victory of the militants in Hamas and Hezbollah and undercut the moderates.” Obama, for his part, said he was for the use of “more carrots and sticks” and wanted to have dialogue and engagement policy with Iran before taking any other action, according to Arad.

“Netanyahu reacted by saying that what is essential here are not means but the ends. … They are in agreement about the overall objective. Then Netanyahu added his considered judgment that the more credible the military option, the more likely it is that diplomacy with sanction will succeed.” Obama’s “body language conveyed” that he agreed with that as well, Arad said.

President Obama and Prime Minister Netanyahu in May 2009 During Their First Meeting Since Obama Became President

So Netanyahu clearly expressed his view that the immediate focus of US foreign policy in the Middle East must be Iran, not the Palestinians, and apparently Obama agreed. Netanyahu made this point again, very clearly, when he visited the White House for the first time in May 2009:

U.S. President Barack Obama set a rough timetable for his diplomatic outreach to arch-foe Iran for the first time on Monday, saying he wanted to see serious progress by the end of the year. He also held out the prospect of tougher sanctions against Tehran “to ensure that Iran understands we are serious.”

Obama’s comments came after talks with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in which the new Israeli leader was expected to stress Israel’s concerns about Iran’s nuclear program. Israel believes it is a cover to build atomic weapons. With many Israelis skeptical about his efforts to engage Iran diplomatically, Obama stressed that attempts by the previous Bush administration to isolate Iran had failed, “so what we are going to try to do is do something different.”

Sitting next to Netanyahu in the Oval Office, Obama said he hoped to begin negotiations with Tehran soon, after Iran holds elections next month. Iran’s leaders have so far rebuffed his efforts to reach out to them and toughened their rhetoric. “The important thing is to make sure there is a clear timetable, at which we point we say these talks don’t seem to be making any serious progress,” Obama said.

“By the end of the year we should have some sense whether or not these discussions are starting to yield significant benefits, whether we are starting to see serious movement on the part of Iranians,” he said.

While little to no progress has been made in the Iranian negotiations front, as Iran has dragged out the negotiations month after month but failed to make an agreement, Iran has continued to threaten the existence of the State of Israel on a regular basis, most recently earlier this month:

The Palestinians and the nations of the Middle East will be rid of a “bad omen” once Israel is annihilated, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said on Thursday, in a speech communicated by Press TV. Israel, a foreign presence and a “Western prodigy” in the region, had “reached the end of its road,” Ahmadinejad told supporters in southern Iran. Israel was not as useful for “its masters” – apparently a reference to the United States and Europe – as it was at its inception, he said. Calling Jews who immigrated to Israel before or after the founding of the state “the most criminal people in the world,” he said it was now clear that there was no regime more hated than Israel.

Left-leaning Alan Dershowitz Has Strong Words for President Obama Regarding his recent harsh treatment of Israel

One can only imagine the uproarious outcry in America for an immediate military response if any foreign leader made such comments in reference to the United States.  Even left-leaning US attorney Alan Dershowitz is troubled by Obama’s recent anti-Israeli actions, stating that “Obama has to realize is that he is dealing with Israel, a democracy to which you can not always dictate specific terms” while noting that the Iranians are quite pleased to see Obama aggressively attacking Netanyahu:

How would you advise Obama? I would tell him that the process cannot be unilateral and that there must be mutual concessions. For example, the Obama administration has falsely blamed the naming of a Ramallah square after a terrorist who murdered Jews on Hamas, rather than on the Palestinian Authority.

The Obama administration has to make as substantial demands of the Palestinians as it does of the Israelis. If you think this crisis is severe, you should know it is nothing compared to what could happen with regard to the Iranian issue at some future date. I’m afraid [President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad is one of the happiest men these days thanks to the many incidents between the United States and Israel. [PA Authority President] Mahmoud Abbas, by the way, is also pretty happy.

An overwhelming majority of the members of the House of Representatives are also troubled by Obama’s actions towards Netanyahu, with 327 out of 435 signing a letter to Obama urging him to stop attacking Israel and instead focus on Iran:

327 Members of the US House of Representatives signed a letter to President Obama calling on him to stop attacking Israel and instead focus on the Iranian nuclear threat

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will continue discussions with his senior ministers in the coming days, looking for a way out of the crisis with the US. He received some badly needed support on Friday from 327 congressmen, who signed a letter expressing concern that “the highly publicized tensions” in US-Israeli ties will “not advance the interests” of either state.

Meanwhile, in Washington, 327 congressmen – three-quarters of the House of Representatives – signed a bipartisan letter to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton expressing solid support for Israel and the expectation that differences between Jerusalem and Washington will be smoothed over quickly and in private. “We are writing to reaffirm our commitment to the unbreakable bond that exists between our country and the State of Israel and to express to you our deep concern over recent tension,” the letter read. “A strong Israel is an asset to the national security of the United States and brings stability to the Middle East.

“We are concerned that the highly publicized tensions in the relationship will not advance the interests the US and Israel share. Above all, we must remain focused on the threat posed by the Iranian nuclear weapons program to Middle East peace and stability.”

Regarding the Iranian threat, an Israeli security expert’s comment to Newsweek in July 2008 really brings home the explicit threat that Iran poses to the continued safety of Israeli citizens and indeed the existence of the state of Israel:

As Ron Tira, an Israeli security expert, puts it: “If you look at the really big picture, there’s not only an Iranian aircraft carrier in Lebanon [Hezbollah], but there’s another one 45 kilometers from Tel Aviv in Gaza [Hamas]. With those two Iranian aircraft carriers in place and Iran proceeding with its nuclear program, with the prospect of America withdrawing from Iraq in the next two years, and Iran becoming a dominant force there … Israel is in position where it needs to act unilaterally and pay whatever the cost.” Miller adds that these huge problems will remain the same “not only for Olmert’s successor but for Bush’s.”

Questions have arisen regarding the true feelings of President Obama towards Israel as he chose to publicly bow to the dictator Saudi King Abdullah while choosing to humilitate the democratically elected Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu at the White House last week

Despite this existential ongoing and growing threat to the State of Israel from Iran, Obama has chosen to publicly humiliate the Israeli leader for failing to move on the Palestinian track to Obama’s liking, even though Obama himself has failed to move on the Iranian track as promised to Netanyahu at their first meeting in July 2008, the subsequent meeting in May 2009 and thereafter between lower level officials.  Perhaps all of the anti-Israeli rhetoric pouring out of White House officials and Obama’s treatment of Netanyahu is simply an expression of the widespread left wing ideological thinking that Israel is the wrongful aggressor and the Palestinians are the innocent victims.

However, the optics of a US Administration harshly condemning a close democratic ally like Israel, and even going to far as to humiliate the Israeli leader at the White House, while sending sweet messages of conciliation to the Iranians and bowing publicly to the Saudis, paints a troubling picture of a historically negative state of US-Israeli relations.  Considering all of these facts, from an Israeli perspective or that of an American supporter of Israel like Colonel Peters, it is not hard to conclude that President Obama could indeed be the first anti-Israeli President in American history.

UPDATE: A conservative publication in Australia tends to agree that Barack Obama is the first anti-Israeli President, for much the same reasons listed above:

When Obama met the king of Saudi Arabia, a nation in which no one votes, women are subject to severe and demeaning restrictions and it is against the law to have a Christian church, Obama bowed in deep respect.

When Obama ran into Venezuela’s murderous despot, Hugo Chavez, at a summit, there was a friendly greeting observed by all.

But there is one leader whom Obama draws the line at. He will not be seen in public with Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. Astonishingly, when Netanyahu saw Obama at the White House this week, all photographers and all TV cameras were banned, a level of humiliation almost completely unique in modern White House practice.

You might even conclude that Obama is trying to interfere in internal Israeli politics and bring down a government. This is something post-colonial, post-multicultural Obama would never do with Iran, but with Israel, the US’s longstanding ally, it’s fine.

And what was Netanyahu’s crime, this act of infamy that Obama’s senior staff described as an “affront” to America? It was that the relevant housing authority passed another stage of approval for 1600 Israeli housing units to be built in East Jerusalem in about three years’ time. It was very foolish that the Israelis allowed this announcement to take place while US Vice-President Joe Biden was in Israel. But they apologised to Biden at the time, Biden kissed and made up with the Israelis and was back to delivering fulsome pro-Israel speeches before he left.

After that point, though, the US reaction went into overdrive. Impeccable American sources tell me this reaction was driven by Obama, and to a lesser extent the Chicago mafia around him.

We must ask why this is so, but first let’s get Netanyahu’s infamous crime into perspective.

Last November Netanyahu announced a 10-month moratorium on all building activity in Jewish settlements in the West Bank. Israel has already promised not to take any more land for settlements but there is the question of renovating existing buildings and constructing new ones in existing settlements.

As Hillary Clinton acknowledged in her speech this week to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, East Jerusalem was never part of this agreement. The two main peace offers Israel has made to the Palestinians in recent years were the Camp David/Taba proposals and the accompanying Clinton parameters in 2000, and Ehud Olmert’s offer to Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas in 2008. Both plans offered essentially the same formula. The Palestinians get all of the Gaza Strip, about 95 per cent of the West Bank and a compensating parcel of territory from Israel proper to make up for the small amount of territory in the West Bank that Israel would keep which houses the main Jewish population blocks. The Palestinians also get some parts of East Jerusalem as their capital. This principle of territorial swaps was accepted by Yasser Arafat and Abbas.

East Jerusalem has always had a different status from the West Bank and some Israelis certainly don’t want to give any of it to a new Palestinian state. But everyone accepts that some Jewish neighbourhoods would remain part of Israel. These are mostly neighbourhoods, as Netanyahu pointed out this week, which are five minutes from the Knesset and a couple of blocks beyond the 1949 armistice line. The administration of George W. Bush had formally agreed with the Israelis that these areas would be permanently part of Israel. Bill Clinton had negotiated an offer to the Palestinians in 2000 which accepted this.

It would be a radical change of policy for an Israeli government to decree that no building would ever take place in Jewish areas of Jerusalem. It would also be a change of American policy.

Moreover, no serious analyst could believe that such building is a roadblock to peace. Peace negotiations have gone on with such building taking place in the past. And all the things that truly make peace impossible – Arab and Palestinian refusal to accept the legitimacy of any Jewish state, Palestinian insistence on certain deal breakers such as the right of return of all Palestinian refugees and their descendants to Israel proper, the insistent and violent anti-Semitism of Palestinian and Arab propaganda and the regional ambitions of players such as Iran and Syria – will be completely unaffected by any decision to build apartments in a Jewish neighbourhood in East Jerusalem in three years time. So why has Obama gone into full jihad mode against Israel? Three explanations suggest themselves. Obama has had a terrible year in foreign policy. He has achieved nothing on Iran or China or anything else of consequence. He is too smart to believe this intimidation of Israel will advance peace, but it might get peace talks going again. The Palestinians only made settlements a roadblock after Obama did. They are refusing to join Israel in peace talks, which Netanyahu would be happy to participate in. They have said they might engage in proximity talks – which means not talking to the Israelis directly but to mediators who will shuttle back and forth carrying messages between them and the Israelis. This is primitive and ridiculous stuff, but if such talks get going Obama could claim some kind of victory, or at least progress.

And Obama is showing that his personal popularity, not America’s standing, still less matters of substance such as Iran’s nuclear program, is what motivates him.

This leads to the second explanation of his behaviour, and that is to make himself personally popular in the Muslim world. Beating up on Israel is the cheapest trick in the book on that score and it can earn him easy, worthless and no doubt temporary plaudits in some parts of the Muslim world.

And thirdly, Obama is the first post-multicultural president of America. In his autobiography he talks of seeking out the most radical political theorists he could at university. For these people Israel is an exercise in Western neo-imperialism. Obama makes their hearts sing with this anti-Israel jihad.

Accompanying Obama’s own actions has been some of the most dangerous rhetoric ever to come out of a US administration, to the effect that Israeli intransigence endangers US troops by inflaming extremists in the Islamic world. No serious analyst anywhere believes that Israel is an important source of the conflicts in Afghanistan or Iraq. Using this type of argument comes dangerously close to the administration licensing a mutant strain of anti-Semitism – it’s all the Jews’ fault.

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Post-Obamacare Collapse: Obama 46% Approval Matches All-Time Low in Gallup

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

After last week's historic passage of the Obamacare package, President Obama approval today matches the all-time low of his Presidency: 46%

In another crushing blow to the “conventional wisdom” of the establishment media that because “Americans love winners” President Barack Obama would receive a large, sustained bounce in approval after last week’s passage of Obamacare, today Gallup released its daily approval numbers showing Obama at only 46% approval, with 46% disapproving. Obama’s 46% approval in Gallup represents a matching of Obama’s all-time low in approval. While Obama did peak at 51% mid-week after the passage of Obamacare, he has now lost that entire bounce and is at the low of his Presidency, which completely repudiates the “conventional wisdom” in the establishment media.

Further, Rasmussen’s numbers this morning confirm this dissipation of any alleged “bounce” from the passage of Obamacare, with Rasmussen finding Obama’s approval numbers now at the same level as before the passage of Obamacare:

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Sunday shows that 28% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Forty-four percent (44%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -16 (see trends).

The President enjoyed a modest bounce in the polls following the passage of health care legislation last week. However, his Approval Index rating is now back to where it was last Sunday, just before the House voted in favor of his health care plan. All the bouncing of the past week has come among Democrats. There has been virtually no change in the opinions of Republicans and unaffiliated voters.

White House spokesman is sure to face questions about this post-Obamacare collapse in the President’s approval ratings, as Gibbs himself last week tweeted out the Gallup one-day poll on Obamacare as a truthful and reliable indicator of the public’s views.

This continued collapse in Obama’s approval, with an all-time low of 46% in Gallup and a near all-time high in Rasmussen of 44% strong disapproval today, demonstrates the failure of the Democratic strategy to smear the tea party as racist extremists as well. Indeed, ABC/WaPo’s numbers this morning show the tea party is favorably viewed by the American public, despite this smear campaign by the Democrats and the establishment media. Numbers such as these are sure to encourage the Republicans to continue to attack the Obamacare package as a historic mistake and ensure that the cry of “replace and repeal” is heard in every congressional race across the nation in the leadup to the November 2010 elections.

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Tea Party Kicks off Tour as 20,000+ Rally in Searchlight, Nevada as Reid Supporters Attack Throwing Eggs; UPDATE: AP Admits Huge Crowd, Omits Reports of Reid Supporters Attacks; Breitbart testimony added; UPDATE #2: Politico reports 20,000 in attendance, debunks Palin smear, reports claims of Reid supporter attacks; 2008 Obama Violent Quotes Added

Saturday, March 27th, 2010

Over 10,000 Tea Party supporters rally in Searchlight, Nevada

Building upon a tide of rising of discontent throughout America regarding the recent historical passage of the gigantic Democratic comprehensive health reform plan known as Obamacare, tea party activists held a rally in the hometown of Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) today with at least 20,000 gathering to hear headline speaker Sarah Palin.  In what many are terming a “conservative Woodstock,” Sarah Palin spoke about the need for the federal government to cut its bloated budget and to rollback the massive Obamacare package, a desire held by many across America and perhaps everyone in the crowd today judging by the cheers. Palin’s key moment came when discussing Democratic control of Congress, when she stated that Americans should say in November 2010 that “You’re Fired”.

Many Supporters of Sarah Palin were amongst the tea party folks rallying in Searchlight, Nevada todayThe establishment media, of course, is working to delegitimize and smear the tea party movement in the wake of the passage of Obamacare, with the AP clearly putting out this narrative before today’s rally:

Organizers predict as many as 10,000 people could come to tiny Searchlight, the hardscrabble former mining town where the Senate Democratic leader grew up and owns a home. But a light turnout or disruptions could lead to questions about the emerging movements’ credibility and direction.
….
The rally that’s been called a conservative Woodstock takes place just days after the historic health care vote that ushered in near-universal medical coverage and divided Congress and the nation.

The vote was followed by reports of threats and vandalism aimed at some Washington lawmakers, mostly Democrats who supported the new law.

Police don’t expect problems but the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department is sending dozens of uniformed and plainclothes officers to patrol the crowd.

The AP, of course, fails to mention that the senior Jewish politician in America, GOP House whip Eric Cantor (R-VA), had a bullet hit one of his Virginia offices (as confirmed by Richmond, VA police).  Considering the massive turnout today, clearly exceeding the estimates of organizers, Americans now know that the tea party is far from finished and perhaps still building strength after the passage of Obamacare. Live reporting from the scene on cable reports that the main highway into tiny Searchlight, Nevada is hopelessly jammed with other folks trying to make it to the rally while a mile long line to enter the rally area, as all available parking on the scene is occupied and folks are parking in town and having tour buses drop them off near the rally and heading in on foot.

Despite the establishment media’s claims that the tea partiers are an violent, angry mob, today’s event was marred only by attacks from supporters of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), as about 35 Reid supporters lined the street leading into the rally and threw eggs at the passing traffic, including the Tea Party Express buses. Such conduct is clearly a threat to the safety of those traveling on the street and a sign of the extremism rising on the left, despite what the media may report. Further, other Reid supporters actually attacked conservative media personality Andrew Breitbart, throwing eggs at him and threats of violence according to those on the scene:

Supporters of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid staged a counter-protest today in Searchlight, Nevada, the Senator’s hometown. Reid supporters gathered just down the road from the launching point of the Tea Party Express tour, and when Breitbart happened upon them, he was met with threats of violence. At least one protester threw an egg at Brietbart, missing him. Eggs were also thrown at the Tea Party Express bus.

We expect the establishment media to ignore these violent acts and threats of violence by Reid supporters directed at tea party activists, as such incidents do not fit into the establishment media’s narrative of tea party “extremism”.   At a minimum, the media should demand answers about what Reid campaign officials organized the 35 Reid supporters to show up on the side of the street and whether the highly dangerous tossing of eggs into a motorway was sanctioned by such officials, and if not sanctioned, what did Reid’s people do to stop it, if anything.

Indeed, the level of enthusiasm necessary to pack a town of only 500 registered voters like Searchlight with 10’s of thousands of people is unlike anything seen in America in many decades.   Considering that President Obama’s approval has again begun to decline, dipping back under 50% after a brief post-Obamacare bounce, the conventional wisdom of the establishment media and all Democratic politicians that the passage of Obamacare would lead to a substantial jump in Democratic fortunes appears to be collapsing, one rally and one poll at a time.

UPDATE: The Associated Press this evening filed a story about the tea party rally today in Searchlight, Nevada, and as expected, did not report the fact that Reid supporters pelted passing cars and tea party buses with eggs from the side of the motorway and threatened Andrew Breitbart, as documented by Breitbart’s radio appearance later in the day. Considering the AP’s reporting of the phantom racial slurs in DC that no one in America has any video or audio evidence actually occurred, despite the presence of many network cameras and folks’ video phones that day in DC, it is unsurprising that the AP refuses to report the Reid supporters’ conduct. Amazingly, the AP did report on the Reid supporters’ presence in the area, but did not report on their activities of throwing eggs at passing vehicles or their threats of violence towards conservative activist Andrew Breitbart:

Reid supporters set up a hospitality tent Saturday in the parking lot of a Searchlight casino, about a mile from the tea party rally. The Senate leader planned to spend part of the day at a new shooting range in Las Vegas with National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre.

Luis Salvador, 55, an unemployed fire sprinkler fitter, drove down from Las Vegas to support Reid, who he said has done a lot for the state and doesn’t deserve the protest brought to his hometown.

“You don’t come to a man’s house and start creating a ruckus,” said Salvador, a registered independent. He and several others taped signs saying “Nevada Needs Harry Reid” to the side of a truck near the highway that runs through town.

Another Reid supporter, Judy Hill, 62, said she doesn’t understand the hatred of Reid. The longtime Democrat from Searchlight said she thinks people just don’t know the man she calls a friend.

“They listen to the rhetoric. I think he’s very misunderstood and under-appreciated,” she said.

It is beyond question that this AP reporter, Michael R. Blood, had access to the internet and could have, and probably did, read the release of the tea party organizers which reported the violent activities by the Reid supporters. The AP’s Blood could have easily talked to Breitbart or listened to his radio appearance, or talked to Levi Russell, who issued the release for the Tea Party Express describing the violent conduct of the Reid supporters, and then interviewed others who were on the tea party bus that was attacked. However, the AP’s Blood chose not to pursue this angle of the story, as it would have been damaging to the Democratic Party, which the AP has sworn undying fealty to in all of its reporting, apparently.

Sadly, this cover up of the violent activities and rhetoric of the Democratic Reid supporters, as testified to by Andrew Breitbart, is just another chapter in the biased and slanted reporting of the establishment media, explicitly demonstrating the double-standard employed by the establishment media of always downplaying or omitting any untoward activities by liberals while inventing or exaggerating any untoward activities by conservatives. Indeed, reporter Blood seems somewhat perplexed that there was no violence amongst the tea party’s 10,000+ crowd, saying that the event “appeared peaceful“.

Andrew Breitbart, seen here in a more relaxed setting, today was reportedly threatened with violence by Reid supporters near the tea party rally

Further, the AP’s Blood makes a curious point in reporting on Breitbart’s speech:

Conservative columnist Andrew Breitbart disputed accounts that tea party activists in Washington shouted racial epithets at black members of Congress amid the health care debate, although he didn’t provide any evidence.

“I know you’re not a racist group,” he told the crowd.

Unmentioned by the AP’s Blood is that the Democrats did not “provide any evidence” that any tea party protester “shouted racial epithets at black members of Congress” other than their own “testimony” in front of the cameras. Indeed, also unmentioned by AP’s Blood is the fact that Breitbart offered a $10,000.00 donation to the United Negro College Fund if anyone could produce any audio or video evidence of the use of any racial epithets:

If we let them get away with Saturday’s stunt — using the imagery of the Civil Rights era and hurtful lies to cast aspersions upon the tea party whole — then they really will have won the day.

It’s time for the allegedly pristine character of Rep. John Lewis to put up or shut up. Therefore, I am offering $10,000 of my own money to provide hard evidence that the N- word was hurled at him not 15 times, as his colleague reported, but just once. Surely one of those two cameras wielded by members of his entourage will prove his point.

And surely if those cameras did not capture such abhorrence, then someone from the mainstream media — those who printed and broadcast his assertions without any reasonable questioning or investigation — must themselves surely have it on camera. Of course we already know they don’t. If they did, you’d have seen it by now.

THOUSANDS OF TIMES.

Rep. Lewis, if you can’t do that, I’ll give him a backup plan: a lie detector test. If you provide verifiable video evidence showing that a single racist epithet was hurled as you walked among the tea partiers, or you pass a simple lie detector test, I will provide a $10K check to the United Negro College Fund.

Is James Carville, senior Democratic strategist, behind the recent campaign to smear tea party supporters as racists, despite the lack of any video or audio evidence of any slurs of any kind?

Of course, no such evidence has been forthcoming or produced because, in all likelihood, the claims of racial taunts by Democrats were simply spurious claims made to distract the American public from the content of the massive Obamacare package and to smear those who oppose it. Recall the story a few weeks ago that Democrats were planning ways to bring down the tea party movement, by perhaps turning one of its leaders into a “mole” and smearing the rest as extremists:

Big Government has learned that Clintonistas are plotting a “push/pull” strategy. They plan to identify 7-8 national figures active in the tea party movement and engage in deep opposition research on them. If possible, they will identify one or two they can perhaps ‘turn’, either with money or threats, to create a mole in the movement. The others will be subjected to a full-on smear campaign. (Has MSNBC already been notified?)

Big Government has also learned that James Carville will head up the effort.

Obviously, there is no love lost between Obama and the Clinton machine. It may at first seem odd that Clinton would rush to Obama’s defense, but the tea party movement poses a threat far beyond the immediate goals of the Obama Administration.

The tea party movement could evolve into a new political realignment, one founded on a belief in limited government and less government interference in the economy. The Progressive agenda, which has been painstakingly built up over the last three decades, could be left in tatters.

As the Clinton’s know, “politics ain’t beanbag.” Expect the counterattack soon. Don’t say you haven’t been warned.

The avalanche of Democratic claims this week of racial slurs and hysteria about “threats” appear to be the very “counterattack” of the Democrats against the tea party that was predicted by Breitbart. Nancy Pelosi and company strolled down the middle of the tea party protest hoping to get a you-tube moment of a screamed slur or even a physical confrontation – but the tea party protesters simply didn’t provide any such video moment to the Democrats. Because of this lack of evidence, the Democrats have been forced to go out on a limb and, in our view, falsely assert that slurs were made that no one managed to get a recording of, despite the rolling cameras of multiple networks and hundreds of camera phones during the walk up to Capitol Hill. It is truly a sad day in America when the establishment media reports as fact claims made by Democrats about racial slurs for purely political reasons without any evidence whatsoever to back them up.

The AP did, however, grudgingly admit that a giant crowd of tea party supporters descended on tiny Searchlight, Nevada:

At least 9,000 people streamed into tiny Searchlight, a former mining town 60 miles south of Las Vegas, bringing American flags, “Don’t Tread on Me” signs and outspoken anger toward Reid, President Barack Obama and the health care overhaul.

Organizers had said up to 10,000 people might come; around 1 p.m., police estimated the crowd was between 9,000 and 11,000.

Note that the first paragraph excerpted above, near the top of the article, uses the low estimate, and only later in the article, near the end, does the AP’s Blood admit that “police estimated the crowd was between 9,000 and 11,000″ which was what organizers had hoped for. Of course, earlier in the day, before the rally, AP’s Blood had this to say, trying to set up his ability to write a hit piece on the tea party after the rally:

Organizers predict as many as 10,000 people could come to tiny Searchlight, the hardscrabble former mining town where the Senate Democratic leader grew up and owns a home. But a light turnout or disruptions could lead to questions about the emerging movements’ credibility and direction.

Of course, as Blood reported, the turnout was heavy at the rally and the rally “appeared peaceful“. One might expect Blood to write a story reporting that the tea party showed its building “credibility and relevance” after the passage of Obamacare, considering the rousing success of the rally; one might also expect the AP’s Blood to report upon the press release of the Tea Party Express claimed Reid supporters were engaged in violent acts against the passing tea party buses from the side of the motorway, throwing eggs, or the threats of violence against Breitbart. Sadly, AP’s Blood was not there to report objectively on the facts of what happened, he was there to write a hit piece on the tea party – which, fortunately, he was unable to do because of the indisputable success of the rally today.

The violent acts and threats of Reid’s supporters will now fade into the memory hole of unreported facts, despite Breitbart’s testimony, as the AP story on the rally will likely be the only mainstream media reporting to emerge from today’s rally. If tea party supporters had been the ones tossing eggs into oncoming traffic on the side of the highway, or if tea party supporters had been the ones shouting threats of violence, we can be certain that the AP’s Blood would have started and ended his story reporting those facts. All told, the biased and slanted reporting of the AP today is yet another example of the partisan and ideological nature of America’s media in the 21st century.

UPDATE #2: Politico confirmed in their midnight report that the tea party turnout was indeed massive, as they estimated 20,000 supporters were there:

“When we talk about fighting for our country, let’s clear the air right now about what it is that we’re talking about,” she told a crowd estimated by organizers at 20,000 gathered for a rally in a windswept desert lot about four miles north of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s tiny hometown. “We’re not inciting violence. Don’t get sucked into the lame-stream media lies.”

Palin said “violence isn’t the answer.” She said “our vote is our arms” and encouraged activists not to be discouraged by the passage of the Democratic healthcare overhaul bill last week, but rather to channel their energies into defeating congressional Democrats who supported the legislation.

Democrats this week accused Palin of exacerbating the already tense atmosphere after last weekend’s House vote passing the overhaul by telling her followers via twitter “Don’t Retreat, Instead – RELOAD!” and by singling out 20 House Democrats who voted for the health care bill as targets on her website using a map with cross-hair gun sights on their districts.

The targeting phraseology is commonly used by political pros to indicate priority races, but Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.) told a New York television station that Palin’s presentation was dangerous, given the context.

Even left-leaning Politico cannot stomach the Democratic strategy of claiming Sarah Palin is “inciting violence” by targeting vulnerable Democrats for electoral elimination, noting that such “targeting phraseology is commonly used by political pros to indicate priority races”. Perhaps today’s rally will be the turning point where the establishment media stops reporting the ridiculous smears of Palin and the tea partiers fed to them by Democratic strategists and instead begins to actually focus on the substance of the massive Obamacare passage the Democrats have just passed into law.

Amazingly, Politico actually reported the egg throwing at passing tea party buses by Reid supporters and the violent threats upon Breitbart:

Conservative talk show host Mark Williams, an official with the political action committee that sponsored the rally, rejected media reports of slurs directed at House Democrats during tea party rallies in Washington before Sunday’s vote, which were based on first-hand accounts from reporters and members of Congress.

“That’s a crock,” he said, alleging that when his group’s buses – emblazoned with “Tea Party Express” – drove down Searchlight’s main street, they were pelted with eggs by Reid supporters, who lined the sidewalks waving mass-produced placards saying “Welcome to Reid Country.”

Williams declared “Thuggery is a left-wing tactic. We denounce it. We will not stand for it.”

On the homepage of the Big Government site of Internet entrepreneur Andrew Breitbart, who spoke at the rally, a headline reads:  “Harry Reid Supporters Attack Tea Party Bus!… Update: Breitbart Attacked!”

Now that an establishment media source has actually reported the violent, unsafe actions by Reid supporters and their violent threats to Breitbart, perhaps the story will gain some traction. Finally, regarding the claims that the GOP engaged in the incitement of aggression or violence by tea party protesters over Obamacare, perhaps the media should take a trip into the way back machine and review these Obama quotes:

Barack Obama, June 2008: “‘If They Bring a Knife to the Fight, We Bring a Gun

Barack Obama, October 2008: “I want you to talk to them whether they are independent or whether they are Republican. I want you to argue with them and get in their face.

Has any Republican or tea party leader told his or her supporters to “bring a gun” to a fight with political opponents, or told his or her supporters to “argue with them and get in their face” in reference to liberals? Of course not, because if that had happened, it would be front page news in the extraordinarily biased establishment media.

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Obama Approval Bounce Over: Gallup and Rasmussen Show Declines

Saturday, March 27th, 2010

President Obama May Need To Tap his "Superman" Skills to Push His Approval Ratings Back Up to a Majority of Americans in the wake of the historic passage of Obamacare

After the historic passage of President Barack Obama’s signature initiative, Obamacare, the President received a bump in approval in the two main daily tracking polls, Gallup and Rasmussen. Obama reached as high as 51% approval (amongst all adults) in Gallup, while he reached a peak of 49% (amongst likely voters) in Rasmussen last week after passage of the Obamacare package. Today, the results taken for the three day period of Wednesday, Thursday and Friday show President Obama again on the decline, sliding to 48% approval/45% disapproval in Gallup while declining to 47% approval/53% disapproval in Rasmussen.

These results may be somewhat of a shock to the DC political and media establishment, as the “conventional wisdom” of almost all Democratic politicians and establishment media reports has been that President Obama would receive a sustained and significant increase in his popularity after the passage of the historic Obamacare package.   In addition to the polls noted above, the post-Obamacare passage polling by well-respected Quinnipiac University cut against the claim of any significant bounce for Obama at all, as Quinnipiace found Obama to be underwater at 45% approval/46% disapproval in the two days following the historic House passage of Obamacare after finding Obama at 46%/49% immediately before the passage.

President Barack Obama's long term trend of declining approval by the American public appears to have not been broken by the passage of Obamacare

Indeed, the small bump and ongoing dissipation of same in Obama’s approval after the passage of his signature initiative is quite similar to the brief bump Obama received after his State of the Union (“SOTU”) address in late January 2010. The SOTU bounce peaked a few days after the speech and was completely dissipated in about 10 days, and it appears from today’s Gallup and Rasmussen numbers that a similar pattern is occurring in the wake of Obamacare’s passage.

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Flash: Dems Reject GOP “No Viagra for Sex Offenders” Amendment to Obamacare

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

Senate Democrats, led by Democratic Senate Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), Have Just Now Rejected a Ban on Federal Funding of Viagra for Sex Offenders via Obamacare

In a Senate Obamacare vote that is certain to end up in 2010 GOP campaign commercials, Senate Democrats rejected a GOP amendment to Obamacare that would have banned the use of federal money to pay for Viagra for sex offenders:

Democrats killed an amendment by Republican Sen. Tom Coburn to prevent the newly created insurance exchanges from using federal money to cover Viagra and other erectile dysfunction drugs for rapists, pedophiles and other sex offenders. The amendment failed 57-42

“The vast majority of Americans don’t want their taxpayer dollars paying for this kind of drug for those kind of people,” Coburn said.

Democratic Sen. Max Baucus urged his colleagues to defeat the amendment.

“This is a serious bill. This is a serious debate. The amendment offered by the senator from Oklahoma makes a mockery of the Senate, the debate and the American people. It is not a serious amendment. It is a crass political stunt aimed at making 30-second commercials, not public policy,” he said.

The Democrats appear intent upon ramming through the entirety of the separate House reconciliation amendment to Obamacare without any changes, including the maintenance of the use of federal funds to pay for Viagra or other erectile dysfunction drugs for sex offenders.  Considering the fact that a substantial majority of Americans, at least 62%, agree that the GOP should continue to fight Obama and the Democrats to obtain changes to the Obamacare package, the present Democratic strategy of “no amendments” may end up backfiring.

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Shocker: AP: Obama Has Been Lying About Children’s Pre-Existing Conditions

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

One of President Obama's Primary Claims Regarding This Year's Benefits from Obamacare, a ban on denying coverage for children with pre-existing conditions, is actually False and Not In the Language of the Bill, according to Karen Lightfoot, spokeswoman for the House Energy and Commerce Committee

In a story sure to do some damage to the planned Obama road show this week to gin up support for the newly passed Obamacare, the Associated Press reported late last night that President Barack Obama has been explicitly misstating the immediate benefits of the Obamacare statutory language regarding insurer coverage of children’s pre-existing conditions.   Specifically, Obama’s claim, as repeated many times over the past week and as recently as Saturday by the President, that insurance companies will immediately be forced to provide insurance to any child with a pre-existing condition is actually false:

Under the new law, insurance companies still would be able to refuse new coverage to children because of a pre-existing medical problem, said Karen Lightfoot, spokeswoman for the House Energy and Commerce Committee, one of the main congressional panels that wrote the bill President Barack Obama signed into law Tuesday.

However, if a child is accepted for coverage, or is already covered, the insurer cannot exclude payment for treating a particular illness, as sometimes happens now. For example, if a child has asthma, the insurance company cannot write a policy that excludes that condition from coverage. The new safeguard will be in place later this year.

In recent speeches, Obama has given the impression that the immediate benefit for kids is much more robust.

Full protection for children would not come until 2014, said Kate Cyrul, a spokeswoman for the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, another panel that authored the legislation. That’s the same year when insurance companies could no longer deny coverage to any person on account of health problems.

The AP continues to describe the false claims made by Obama in the past few days:

Obama’s public statements conveyed the impression that the new protections for kids were sweeping and straightforward.

“This is a patient’s bill of rights on steroids,” the president said Friday at George Mason University in Virginia. “Starting this year, thousands of uninsured Americans with pre-existing conditions will be able to purchase health insurance, some for the very first time. Starting this year, insurance companies will be banned forever from denying coverage to children with pre-existing conditions.”

And Saturday, addressing House Democrats as they approached a make-or-break vote on the bill, Obama said: “This year … parents who are worried about getting coverage for their children with pre-existing conditions now are assured that insurance companies have to give them coverage – this year.”

While the AP is obviously sympathetic to the President, and attempts to avoid directly calling the President a liar, the fact that Obama has specifically claimed that “starting this year, insurance companies will be banned forever from denying coverage to children with pre-existing conditions” while the actual language of the Obamacare bill he signed into law does not provide those new benefits until 2014 cannot be described in any other way than a lie.   This is especially so because the statutory language of the Senate bill has been set in stone since the Christmas Eve vote by the Senate. One can only imagine the ferocity of the establishment media’s coverage if the name of the misleading President was Bush instead of Obama.

As the establishment media is so wedded to supporting  the President, it is likely that the oft-repeated Obama lie about children’s pre-existing conditions will receive only limited coverage.  The fact that the White House staff and President were apparently so clueless as to the actual statutory language of their own signature initiative indicates a level of incompetence that should be troubling to every American. Moving forward, Americans are left to wonder what claims about the immediate benefits to the public from Obamacare made by the President, if any, are actually truthful and which ones are either incompetently or intentionally false.

UPDATE: Hotair catches up with this CentristNet post from last night, notes that we could see a Democratic amendment in the Senate to fix this “issue” of Obama overclaiming the language of his own bill.

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State Attorneys General Agree To File Constitutional Challenge To Obamacare Immediately

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

President Obama, making calls here on Sunday to wavering House Democrats, is about to face a multi-state lawsuit alleging that his signature initiative, Obamacare, is unconstitutional

In late breaking news this evening after the historic passage of Obamacare through the House of Representatives by Democrats over bipartisan opposition, many state attorneys general held a conference call in which it was decided that they would file a multi-state suit alleging the newly-passed Obamacare is unconstitutional immediately after President Barack Obama signs the act, which is expected on early next week.  Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott broke the news on his Facebook page:

Just got off the AG conference call. We agreed that a multi-state lawsuit would send the strongest signal. We plan to file the moment Obama signs the bill. I anticipate him signing it tomorrow. Check back for an update at that time. I will post a link to the lawsuit when it is filed. It will lay out why the bill is unconstitutional and tramples individual and states rights.

While the entire roster of claims regarding unconstitutionality is obviously unknown at this time, it appears that a central focus of the initial immediate filing (which will undoubtedly be amended several times) will be whether the individual mandate, which requires American citizens to purchase health insurance from private insurers, is a constitutional exercise of the federal government’s proscribed powers. Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli announced late Sunday night after the conference call that Virginia planned on joining the multi-state litigation against Obamacare:

Virginia will file suit against the federal government charging that the health-care reform legislation is unconstitutional, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli’s office confirmed last night.

Cuccinelli is expected to argue that the bill, with its mandate that requires nearly every American to be insured by 2014, violates the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution. The attorney general’s office will file suit once President Barack Obama signs the bill into law, which could occur early this week.

“At no time in our history has the government mandated its citizens buy a good or service,” Cuccinelli said in a statement last night.

Finally, Florida’s Attorney General Bill McCollum announced Florida would join the suit:

ORLANDO, FL — Moments after Congress voted to approve President Obama’s health care legislation, Florida’s Attorney General announced he will file a lawsuit to declare the bill unconstitutional.

Bill McCollum will join Attorneys General from South Carolina, Nebraska, Texas, Utah, Pennsylvania, Washington, North Dakota and South Dakota to file a lawsuit against the federal government.

“The health care reform legislation passed by the U. S. House of Representatives this evening clearly violates the U.S. Constitution and infringes on each state’s sovereignty,” McCollum said in a statement distributed late Sunday night.

“If the President signs this bill into law, we will file a lawsuit to protect the rights and the interests of American citizens.”

As noted above, many other states are also expected to join the multi-state litigation set to be filed this week as soon as President Obama signs the bill, originally passed on Christmas Eve 2009 by the Senate and today passed by the House. This matter will present the largest challenge in decades to the present jurisprudence on the Commerce Clause, which presently allows essentially unlimited federal government regulation of any economic activity. One key factor for the Court is state activism to oppose federal encroachment in any given area, and a total of 37 states may pass specific legislation to battle the Obamacare provision requiring all individuals to purchase health insurance:

BOISE, Idaho — Idaho took the lead in a growing, nationwide fight against health care overhaul Wednesday when its governor became the first to sign a measure requiring the state attorney general to sue the federal government if residents are forced to buy health insurance.

Similar legislation is pending in 37 other states.

This litigation will open a new chapter in the Obamacare battle in federal district court, where political fireworks are sure to ensue and a momentous decision is set to be made by the trial court and then, in all likelihood, the Supreme Court of the United States. President Obama may yet regret the recent public fights between him and Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito (who Obama filibustered as a Senator), as the existing acrimony between the branches cannot be helpful for the President’s chances of avoiding a damaging Supreme Court ruling that his signature initiative is unconstitutional.

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