Having tried and failed to demonize first tea partiers then John Boehner in the eyes of the public, the Obama White House and its few remaining allies have turned on a new bugaboo: the US Chamber of Commerce.
The Chamber is the premier pro-big business lobby in the nation – as such, it’s currently engaged in a death match with Obamacrats.
Although Obama has run the most corporatist White House administration since…well, since the last four White House administrations, the Chamber is helping fund a number of Republican campaigns in this election cycle.
Presumably, the current crop of GOPers on the electoral slate has promised to the Chamber even more corporate giveaways and taxpayer bailouts than their Democratic counterparts.
Angered by the amount of crash cash flowing from the Chamber to its political opponents, the White House has started throwing grenades.
The President accused them of taking in an undisclosed amount of foreign donations, warning voters at rallies of foreign influence on our elections. The President’s chief strategist, David ‘Axelrove’, repeated the claim on CBS.
And right on cue, Obama administration water boys like EJ Dionne at Newsweek have reiterated the attacks – I guess for the three people who still read Newsweek.
The undue, undemocratic, un-American, and unfair amount of influence that our corporate overloads have on US elections is no laughing matter. The White House is right to be concerned and should push for campaign finance reform in response.
The problem is that President Obama is in no position to lead that push. As a candidate in 2008 his campaign did more to undermine campaign finance reform than any person in history.
His attacks on the US Chamber of Commerce are thus brazenly hypocritical.
We have been down this road before, after the Supreme Court’s vile right-wing ruling in Citizens United v. FEC. That Jan. 2009 disaster basically now allows corporations to spend unlimited amounts to bribe candidates and mislead voters by treating corporate organizations as persons under the constitution.
To fire up his base, the President in his State of the Union address that week infamously slammed the ruling with the courts members sitting right in front of him.
Post-Partisan Examiner wasted no time pointing out Obama’s hypocrisy:
Obama took more money from Wall Street than any candidate ever.
He refused to follow John McCain – a longtime champion of campaign finance reform – in accepting public money instead. McCain’s demise proved no good deed goes unpunished. Working with Feingold on campaign finance reform had divided McCain from the right-wing base which never forgave him.
Conservatives sat out the 2008 election, handing Obama victory. McCain received no credit for taking public money.
Instead, the toothless left suspended disbelief to buy the Obama campaign’s lame justification for its campaign finance flip flop – that it had created an alternative public finance system through small donations.
That bogus claim was later discredited by the pro-Obama L.A. Times; in fact, most of Obama’s donations had come from big donors, corporations, Wall Street, and bundlers.
The candidate of campaign finance reform lost in 2008. The candidate of big business, of Wall Street, of the corporate media complex won. No candidate in his right mind will ever reject corporate money again, as McCain did. Not if he or she wants to win.
But there’s more.
Bloggers discovered during the primary that the Obama campaign took in illegal donations – one was from Obama’s illegal immigrant aunt, who by law is not eligible to contribute to American political campaigns.
A glitch – perhaps there on purpose – on Obama’s website allowed for foreign contributions as the site’s donation security measures did not prohibit or check overseas donations.
Hillary and McCain voters were predictably upset. The McCain campaign had to submit to a Federal Election Commission audit, because of its public funding.
To date, the Obama campaign has never faced an audit. We do not know exactly how much of Obama’s campaign cash originated from illegal foreign donors.
Obama’s corporate money 2008 campaign killed campaign finance reform. Obama’s campaign, because it was funded by soft money, has never been audited. Obama took in illegal foreign donations. Obama does not really care about campaign finance reform.
He does not care about corporate influence on elections. He does not even care about foreign money infiltration American campaign.
This is a purely self-serving political attack designed to rev up the rightfully disillusioned Democratic base. Obama’s cynical hypocrisy is completely transparent and not fooling anybody.
Like his two-faced politically motivated animosity towards the Supreme Court’s views towards campaign finance, Obama is a hypocrite in attacking the Chamber of Commerce.
The enemies of campaign finance reform merely emulate the model Obama perfected.