Obama’s Policies Since 2008: “Nope” to Hope and an Unfortunate “Yes” to Change
Shortly before the elections, I traveled to my hometown in Texas to visit family and enjoy some fall football. I also stopped by my favorite frozen custard place, and after chatting with the owner for a few minutes, he found out that I worked in Washington, D.C. Once he knew that, his face completely changed.
As often happens when people back home find out that I work in the nation's capital, the frozen custard store owner gave me an earful. He vented about how he isn't necessarily affiliated with one political party, but he was "sick and tired" of politicians refusing to listen to citizens and watching the Obama administration and legislators "spend like crazy and send billions of dollars to other countries while we're barely hanging on here in America." Like so many at the grassroots level, far away from the hustle and bustle of the Beltway, this man was furious. He was disgusted by politics and wanted government to just "get out of the way."
This is the attitude of millions of Americans of every political stripe, and it's a far cry from the "Hope and Change" days of Barack Obama's presidential campaign. Instead of hope, people feel hopeless as they struggle to pay their bills and feed their families. They helplessly watch as the Obama Administration tries to force tax hikes on everyone, although Obama pledged to tax only the "rich" (who, these days, don't seem as rich and who tend to be the people who tell me that they want to hire more workers but can't because of rising health care costs, thanks to ObamaCare and overall taxes spiking).
In terms of change, we've gotten change. The change spurred by Obama's policies since taking office, however, has left most Americans speechless and angry. Obama swore up and down that "special interests" would not have a say in his actions, but we're watching as homosexual activists, radical pro-abortion groups, and advocates for illegal immigration have practically been handed a key to the White House. There has been change, but not for those who espouse traditional American values and do not believe that the government should spend their money recklessly and intrude into every facet of their lives.
Let's take a look at some of Obama's detrimental policies thus far:
For the 51 percent of Americans who claim to be pro-life,1 or the 61 percent of Americans who do not think that taxpayer money should be used to fund abortion,2 the Obama administration's policies have been a slap in the face. The agenda of pro-abortion activists has received priority attention since Obama's inauguration in January 2009.
Pro-life Americans knew that an Obama administration would be incredibly harmful to unborn children early on, when then-Senator Obama declared at a campaign rally in Pennsylvania, "I've got two daughters, 9 years old and 6 years old. I'm going to teach them first of all about values and morals, but if they make a mistake, I don't want them punished with a baby."3 This chilling statement reflected his view that, instead of taking responsibility for their own actions, women can discard their unborn children as "mistakes." Sadly, he has had no change of heart while in the White House.
- Right after being sworn in as President, Obama overturned the Mexico City policy, which prohibited U.S. taxpayer money from funding abortion services overseas. Therefore, American dollars are used all around the world to pay for a practice that a majority of Americans disagree with, and that goes against the laws and cultures of many different countries.4
- During the ObamaCare debate about abortion, Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Michigan), who authored the Stupak-Pitts amendment prohibiting taxpayer funds from paying for abortion in the health care legislation, was persuaded by Obama to vote for the health care bill in exchange for an "executive order." In other words, Obama issued a non-binding decree that vaguely prohibited taxpayer funding of abortion in the new health care law. This was a hollow promise that has already been contradicted, as an "executive order" is not actual law. In July 2010, the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) uncovered an Obama administration plan to give Pennsylvania $160 million to set up a new "high-risk" insurance program and quietly approve a plan under which the program could cover any abortion that was legal in Pennsylvania.5 After the sneaky attempt to funnel money to abortion services was discovered, the Obama administration backed away from those actions and claimed to uphold the executive order. However, it became clear that the administration intends to use back door channels to fund abortion — with taxpayer money.
- With Obama's blessing, Democrats in Congress tacked an amendment to the Department of Defense Appropriations bill to allow abortions to be performed on military bases domestically and overseas.
- The Obama administration spent $23 million promoting a new Kenyan constitution that included language to overturn the pro-life laws in the country and allow virtually unlimited abortions.6
- President Obama has selected radically pro-abortion individuals for key government appointments, such as Kathleen Sebelius to the Department of Health and Human Services, David Ogden as Deputy Attorney General, Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State, and countless others.
- President Obama announced $50 million for the UNFPA, the United Nations population agency that has been criticized for promoting abortion abroad and has worked closely with Chinese population control officials who regularly force women to have abortions or undergo sterilization procedures against their wills.
- White House visitor logs reveal that Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards has been given frequent access to top Obama staffers, and pro-abortion NARAL activist Nancy Keenan has met with key staffers and been invited to social functions.
Rewards to the Homosexual Lobby
Although homosexuals make up a small minority of the American population, they are one of the most visible — not to mention powerful and incredibly vicious. Anyone who disagrees with their agenda or believes that marriage should be between one man and one woman, whether on religious or personal grounds, is painted with the "intolerant bigot" broad brush and persecuted mercilessly. They have a powerful voice in Hollywood as it stands, and after Obama was inaugurated, they added the U.S. government to their list of cohorts.
- In October 2009, President Obama was the keynote speaker at the so-called Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Dinner and made it clear that he intended to use his presidency to marginalize those who hold traditional values, ex-homosexuals who turned away from the lifestyle, and those who oppose homosexuality. His administration has taken bold steps to do so, making homosexuality a front-and-center issue in politics since his inauguration.
- Homosexual activists boast that, in less than two years in office, Obama has appointed more homosexuals to key positions than Clinton did in his entire presidential term.7
- At the HRC dinner in October 2009, Obama stated that he supported repealing the 1993 law prohibiting homosexuals from serving openly in the military. In the 2010 Department of Defense Appropriations bill, liberals in Congress attached an irrelevant amendment to the legislation repealing the law, without allowing the military even to conduct a review on how the repeal would impact morale and readiness. Instead of focusing on supporting our troops and giving them the resources they need to protect our country, the Obama administration seems more inclined to use our military as a petri dish for social experiments.
- Obama has also voiced his support for the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), which would grant homosexuals special rights in the workplace. The implications of ENDA would be serious, especially for individuals of faith. For instance, if a Christian businesswoman declined to hire an open homosexual for a secretarial position, the homosexual activist could sue her for alleged employment discrimination. Even worse, the bill attacks situations based on "actual" or "perceived sexual orientation." In other words, if a homosexual did not get a job offer, he or she could turn around and sue the employer for "perceiving" that he or she was a homosexual. ENDA goes so far as to police employers' thoughts about why they would not choose a candidate for a job. The legislation has not been passed, but there is talk of liberal congressmen bringing it up again for discussion in a "lame duck" session after the November 2010 elections.
In essence, Obama believes that wealth should be "spread around." Sadly, he ascribes to the unsustainable model of taking more and more from those who earn and using it to expand government bureaucracy. Americans continue to be the most giving people in the world to charities, churches, and private organizations, using their own money to try and help others in ways that they see fit. However, President Obama's policies jeopardize the independence that Americans have to put their money towards causes close to their own hearts. Instead, he wants Americans to pay higher taxes so the government can decide what deserves to be funded. Unfortunately, he doesn't seem to realize that if you don't create wealth and simply dole out what is already there, you will eventually exhaust the supply.
- When the House of Representatives passed "cap and trade" legislation that would impose even more government regulations on Americans and force them to pay higher energy taxes, President Obama celebrated the event as a victory for his "green" agenda. He is on the record as saying, "Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket.8
- President Obama's administration embarked on a massive spending spree of TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program) bailouts for pretty much everyone except the hardworking taxpayer. The government allocated some $700 billion for everything from bailing out General Motors to bailing out financial institutions not only in the U.S., but overseas as well.
- Since 2008, the Obama administration has greatly expanded the federal workforce, while the private sector continues to suffer. Current government employees enjoy generous salaries — on average, federal employees earn 30 to 40 percent more than the average private sector employee.9 It is also more difficult for federal workers to lose their jobs, as private sector positions tend to be linked to productivity. Sadly, while the federal workforce continues to grow and experience higher salaries, private sector workers continue to face shrinking paychecks and job insecurity.
- The health care bill pushed by Obama and liberal congressmen, known as ObamaCare, has already proven to be a bureaucratic nightmare. Employers already face having to cancel health care insurance for employees because of skyrocketing costs, and Americans will begin to face rising taxes to pay for the program even before parts of it are implemented. Through ObamaCare, the president reached his goal of governmental control of over 1/6 of the American economy, even though a majority of Americans oppose the legislation.10
When President Obama was sworn in, many conservatives indeed hoped for the best amidst the chants of "hope and change." As time went on, however, hopeful conservatives and even many who voted for Obama grew disenchanted with his policies. As the economy worsened, Obama spent more and demanded higher taxes. As more Americans embraced the sanctity of life, Obama's policies continued to promote abortion. As more states voted to protect traditional marriage, Obama's policies continued to push the homosexual agenda. The "hope and change" that Obama proclaimed during his campaign days has shifted into a "hope for change" sentiment among voters.
- "More Americans Pro-Life than Pro-Choice for First Time," http://www.gallup.com/poll/118399/more-americans-pro-life-than-pro-choice-first-time.aspx, May 15, 2009, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "CNN Poll: 61% Oppose Tax-Funded Abortions, 63% Oppose All or Most Abortions," http://www.lifenews.com/2009/11/18/nat-5677/, November 18, 2009, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "Obama's 'Punished with a Baby' Comment Sparks Protests," http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/obamas_punished_with_a_baby_comment_sparks_protests/, April 3, 2008, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "Obama Overturns Mexico City Policy, Pro-Lifers React," http://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/obama_overturns_mexico_city_policy_prolifers_react/, January 23, 2009, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "Obama Administration OKs First Tax-Funded Abortions Under Health Care Law," http://www.lifenews.com/2010/07/13/nat-6531/, July 13, 2010, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "White House Spent $23M of Taxpayer Money to Back Kenyan Constitution that Legalizes Abortion, GOP Reps Say," http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/07/21/gop-lawmaker-blasts-white-house-m-spent-kenya-constitution-vote/, July 22, 2010, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "Obama Appoints Record Number of Open Homosexuals," http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2010/oct/10102703.html, October 27, 2010, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "Obama: I'll Make Energy Prices 'Skyrocket'", http://hotair.com/archives/2008/11/02/obama-ill-make-energy-prices-skyrocket/, November 2, 2008, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "Federal Employees Earn 30 to 40 Percent More Than Private-Sector Workers, Study Finds," http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/70781, August 9, 2010, accessed November 2, 2010.
- "Health Care Law: 53% Favor Repeal of Health Care Law, 46% Say Repeal Likely," http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/current_events/healthcare/health_care_law, October 25, 2010, accessed November 2, 2010.
1015 Fifteenth St. N.W., Suite 1100
Washington, D.C. 20005
Phone: (202) 488-7000
Fax: (202) 488-0806