Republicans Want to Cancel the State of the Union?

The Republicans are so intent on throwing a temper tantrum over President Obama’s immigration orders that some of them are actually talking about not allowing him to come to Congress to give the State of the Union address. Rich Lowry, who should still be too ashamed to show his face after all that Palin “starbursts” wankery, is urging them to do this:

“Yes, there’s a risk to overreacting, but there’s a risk to underreacting as well,” said Rich Lowry, the editor of National Review. “And I fear that’s the way the congressional leadership is leaning.”

Mr. Lowry suggested one way Congress could react. “If I were John Boehner,” he said, referring to the House speaker, “I’d say to the president: ‘Send us your State of the Union in writing. You’re not welcome in our chamber.’”

Breitbart chimed in as well:

The State of the Union is provided for by Article II, Section 3 of the Constitution, governing the power of the president: “He shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient…”. Throughout American history, there are examples of presidents who have sent a written report rather than giving a speech.

Congress should indicate to President Obama that his presence is not welcome on Capitol Hill as long as his “executive amnesty” remains in place. The gesture would, no doubt, be perceived as rude, but it is appropriate–and would be far less jarring or uncomfortable than the hostile reception Obama would likely receive in person. In lieu of an address, Congress would offer to read aloud whatever document Obama saw fit to send through.

And some Republicans on Capitol Hill are apparently taking this seriously:

GOP aides and lawmakers say they expect the leadership to consider additional legislation to address the executive order, but there have been no decisions made on what those bills would look like. There are lots of ideas: Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has signaled he would hold up some of Obama’s executive branch nominees, others privately have been musing about shutting the government down, refusing to invite the president to give his State of the Union address or censuring the president.

Now longtime readers of this blog know that I absolutely loathe the State of the Union address. I think they should all be canceled forever. It’s nothing more than a stump speech full of idiotic applause lines (“America must move forward if we are to become a better nation” — WILD APPLAUSE AND CHEERING FOR NO APPARENT REASON BECAUSE HE SAID NOTHING AT ALL). But seriously, are these people fucking 12 years old? What’s next, holding their breath until they get their way? Calling themselves rubber and the president glue? Grow the fuck up.

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Mr Ed

    DO IT!

    A speech from the Oval Office to the American people explaining why he is not giving a state of the union address in front of congress will go a long way to show unengaged voters how badly the GOP is behaving.

  • busterggi

    I can’t understand why Obama doesn’t just open up on all the right-wing crazy, call them out, show a montage of their flip-flops & hypocrisy – he has nothing to lose as the Rethugs clearly mean to do even worse than they have for the next two years.

  • Nihilismus

    I, too, hate the modern method of giving a televised speech in front of Congress. Perhaps if the President returns to giving written reports, the “rebuttal” from the other party will actually address those points and not be written without having ever read it.

    The televised speeches are a useless propaganda tool. Most people who watch the State of the Union speech are already engaged in politics and have their opinions on various policies already — and the grand speech format doesn’t lend itself to arguing nuances that might eventually persuade someone to change positions. Everyone else just wants to watch their normal television shows after a long day, and will say “Crap, not another State of the Union address” before finding a basic cable channel showing reruns of shows they watched years ago.

    If President Obama doesn’t want to look like the Republicans forced his hand, perhaps he can just do his normal speech format from the White House, carried by a few of the networks, and without the annoying clapping interruptions that go with a typical State of the Unions address.

  • hunter

    Mr. Ed: YES!!! That was my thought. Send the State of the Union report to Congress, and broadcast another address from the Oval Office, and don’t hold back. (Not that Obama would ever do that.)

  • John Pieret

    What Mr Ed says. He gives a prime time speech … even if the “major” networks, if that’s what they still are, don’t carry it, PBS and the cable news networks still will and as many people will watch it as ever do, or more because of the controversy … and he focuses on the six years of obstructionism of the Republicans and how, despite that, his policies have revived the economy, gave millions of people access to health care who never had it before and allowed otherwise law-abiding undocumented aliens who have established themselves in American society a measure of security in accord with the wishes of the vast majority of Americans. Just who is it that is ignoring the ‘will of the people,’ anyway?

  • chisaihana5219

    He should send the written report only if Congress agrees that the reply by the opposition is also a written report sent to him, so we don’t have to waste tv time avoiding it. Then the newspapers can print both and we can shred them.

  • peterh

    State of the Union speeches are reprehensible, contravening the Constitution more so.

  • Reginald Selkirk

    But seriously, are these people fucking 12 years old?

    Again with the rhetorical questions.

  • raven

    Strangely enough, Obama does have some accomplishments this year.

    1. We and the economy aren’t dead yet. In fact, the economy is doing more than OK lately.

    2. Remember those hordes of zombie robot Moslem Catholic Ebola ridden children from Honduras and El Salvador? The 60,000 Ninja children who were going to destroy the USA? There aren’t any more waves. The USA went to central America and stopped it at its source.

    3. The US isn’t in the middle of an Ebola epidemic that has killed millions. In fact, right now the number of Ebola cases in the USA is…zero.

    It is true, the Obama adminstration dropped the balls early on but they have managed to get it together. Even the epidemics in Africa are looking better.

    4. Stock markets and corporate profits are at record levels. Not that it is trickling down to the majority of Americans though.

  • raven

    I’m with most.

    He should just send a written report. And then give a speech from the White House with the usual props. An Ebola survivor, a xian minister, a war vet, a young Honduran refugee child about 8 (that will go over well in some places), etc..

    And then they should have a great party with some famous rock group or whatever. And if no GOpers show up, so what, who cares?

  • Trebuchet

    What Mr Ed says. He gives a prime time speech … even if the “major” networks, if that’s what they still are, don’t carry it,

    Oh, they’ll carry it. Except, perhaps, for Faux Noise.

  • caseloweraz

    Raven (#9): Stock markets and corporate profits are at record levels. Not that it is trickling down to the majority of Americans though.

    Indeed; third-quarter GDP is up 3.9%, following a second-quarter gain of 4.6%. Isn’t it amazing that, with all the ways president Obama is said to be “destroying the economy”, the GDP and the stock market somehow fail to sink?

    http://www.bea.gov/newsreleases/national/gdp/gdpnewsrelease.htm

  • peterh

    @ RAven,

    “…an Ebola epidemic that has killed millions.”

    A few thousand, yes; millions, no.

  • blf

    What’s next, holding their breath until they get their way?

    Yes, please. Whilst the anointed replacements for the asphyxiated uselessnessses will very probably still be fraudulent corrupt thugs owned by the koachroache brothers, the expired criminals will not be missed. However, disposing of the remains will be a major toxic waste incident.

  • dhall

    peterh #7 and #13 – precisely how has President Obama contravened the constitution? And how many thousands of US citizens have died of ebola? If you’re going to make such statements, at least back them up with something, and in the case of #13, pay attention to context. Raven clearly said, “The US isn’t in the middle of an Ebola epidemic that has killed millions. In fact, right now the number of Ebola cases in the USA is…zero.”

    Or, are you just a drive-by troller?

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    “Good evening, my fellow Americans. The House refused to let me give the State of the Union speech from their floor, so I’m giving it here in the Oval Office, and I’ve given them all ebola.”

  • http://artk.typepad.com ArtK

    12yo? No. 3yo. Throwing a tantrum because mommy won’t buy them the Tinky-winky doll. Or wants them to eat their carrots. The immaturity of the right wing has been increasing by leaps and bounds. Perhaps it was always there, but now they feel free to let it out.

  • sqlrob

    @Peterh:

    I’m assuming the “contravening the Constitution” is the latest immigration executive order. Was it bad when Eisenhower, GWB, GHB, Reagan did the exact same thing? If not, why not?

    And why is the State of the Union reprehensible? I thought you were big on the Constitution. Try reading it, specifically Article 2 Section 3.

  • raven

    The immaturity of the right wing has been increasing by leaps and bounds.

    Man killed in Austin after shooting at Mexican Consulate …

    ww. cnn.com/2014/11/28/us/texas-austin-shooting/

    21 hours ago – Police: A man shot up a federal courthouse and a Mexican consulate early Friday before being shot dead outside the Austin, Texas, police …

    Not sure if immaturity is the right word. Another right wingnut terrorist attack. This guy wasn’t very good at it though. He fired 100 rounds without hitting anyone and tried to burn down the Mexican consulate without any success. Last week there was one in Florida that killed a cop.

  • conway

    President Obama should just show up anyway. Make them turn him away at the door. What a photo op! Capitol Police standing on the steps of The People’s House to prevent a Black man from entering. The Prez should get some US Marshals to escort him.

    Put up or shut up, GOP. Or are you afraid to show your true colors? .

  • matty1

    @18

    And why is the State of the Union reprehensible? I thought you were big on the Constitution. Try reading it, specifically Article 2 Section 3.

    I’m not that familiar with your constitution but I looked it up on wikipedia.

    He shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient; he may, on extraordinary Occasions, convene both Houses, or either of them, and in Case of Disagreement between them, with Respect to the Time of Adjournment, he may adjourn them to such Time as he shall think proper; he shall receive Ambassadors and other public Ministers; he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed, and shall Commission all the Officers of the United States.

    I think a case could be made that while a televised speech before Congress is undoubtedly in line with the letter of the Article a written report would better reflect the spirit, particularly of the second clause. If he is meant to ” recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient” it may be preferable to do so in a medium where he is able to explain in sufficient detail why he judges those measures necessary and expedient.

  • hunter

    raven @10: No, he should just tell them that they’re not welcome at his party.

  • kantalope

    From Thomas Jefferson until Woodrow Wilson the state of the union was just a letter sent to congress – no speechifying: http://mentalfloss.com/article/29811/brief-history-state-union

  • peterh

    @#15:

    There have not been “millions” killed anywhere by ebola; the latest estimate is 5,600 (that there have been no additional fatalities in the US is neither to Obama’s credit nor discredit) and I never intimated Obama has contravened the Constitution. Did you not see the header for this thread?

    Republicans Want to Cancel the State of the Union

    The State of the Union is clearly required by the Constitution. I realize the Constitution doesn’t mean much to many Republicans but up to a very late date they’ve been required to (more or less) live by it.

  • Pingback: Level of American Political Rhetoric Report: Nursery School Edition | ***Dave Does the Blog()

  • http://www.twitter.com/jablair51 Ouabache

    Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has signaled he would hold up some of Obama’s executive branch nominees

    To be fair, Ted was planning on doing that anyway.

  • dhall

    #24 – And nobody on this thread ever said that millions had been killed by ebola. Again, you’re not reading what raven said correctly.

  • Gvlgeologist, FCD

    #26 – from Raven’s comment in #9:

    The US isn’t in the middle of an Ebola epidemic that has killed millions. In fact, right now the number of Ebola cases in the USA is…zero.

    To be fair, this could be interpreted two ways. The more common way (that Peterh in #13, I, and I’m sure, many other readers interpreted it) is that Raven mean that the Ebola epidemic HAS to date killed millions, which is of course incorrect.

    The other way to interpret the statement, which is stretching it, is that Raven meant that the US isn’t in the middle of a hypothetical but potential epidemic that could have killed millions. If that’s the case, it’s a very awkward sentence.

    From what I’ve seen Raven write over the years, I doubt she meant that. Much more likely, she simply made a mistake, but she DID say that millions had been killed by Ebola.

  • Erp

    @24 “There have not been “millions” killed anywhere by ebola; the latest estimate is 5,600”

    Not an estimate but known deaths. BTW the latest WHO figure is 6,928; however, that apparently includes earlier deaths that had been overlooked and doesn’t represent a sudden leap in the current situation. Everyone considers that an undercount of actual fatalities. However not millions.

  • raven

    Much more likely, she simply made a mistake, but she DID say that millions had been killed by Ebola.

    Oh FFS, It’s not complicated.

    That was sarcasm or snark. Before the elections, not even a month ago, the claims and hysteria around Ebola, mostly from the right wingnuts of Fox NoNews et al. was intense. Close the borders, quarantine everyone coming in from Africa, why is the US army being sent there, airborne transmission, worldwide pandemic, ISIS terrorists and Honduran children infected with Ebola sneaking across the border, and on and on.

    It never happened!!! There have been a whole 10 US Ebola cases, only two of which were in-country transmission, both from an incompetent Presbyterian hospital in Dallas. And only two of which were fatal, both from outside with delayed treatment.

    Raven: . The US isn’t in the middle of an Ebola epidemic that has killed millions. In fact, right now the number of Ebola cases in the USA is…zero.

    I’d apologize but this seems perfectly clear to me. US = United States of America. Is = present tense. Not = Negative

    As anyone not in a coma or trapped in right wingland knows, there was no huge US epidemic and the current number of US Ebola cases is none whatsoever. Africa has had ca. 16,000 cases, with ca. 5,600 dead. Ca = circa meaning approximately. WHO (World Health Organization from the UN) and MSF (Mediciens Sans Frontiers- Doctors Without Borders in English) is using a multiplier of 2-2.5 for reported versus probable actual cases. This isn’t millions but so what. I didn’t say there were millions dead in Africa either.

    Anyone who can’t understand the above is out of luck. They need to take an English As A First Language course or go finish their high school GED.

  • raven

    I have to say I’m surprised. Peterh has an excuse. He is a not very bright troll.

    I’d always thought some of the others were smarter than they came across today.

    I guess I’ll try to write for a simpler audience than I normally deal with.

  • Trebuchet

    What if Obama preemptively decided to just send a letter and have a speech from the oval office? Can you imagine? The Repubs, including those who want to bar him, would go berserk.

    As for shutting them out, I think the British Parliament does this once a year when the Queen comes to read a speech prepared by the PM. They literally shut the door in her face. Then open it back up again, of course.

  • matty1

    As for shutting them out, I think the British Parliament does this once a year when the Queen comes to read a speech prepared by the PM. They literally shut the door in her face. Then open it back up again, of course.

    Not quite her face personally but close. The speech is given in the second chamber The House of Lords (don’t get me started) and MP’s are summoned from the Commons by an official called Black Rod to listen to it. It is that official who gets the door slammed in his face as he arrives. The point allegedly being to demonstrate that the elected representatives don’t have to obey the monarch.

  • abb3w

    The state of the union is dictated where Article II says “He shall from time to time give to the Congress information of the state of the union, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient;” but contrariwise was originally done by a written report rather than an address. Contrariwise, the very next clause of the Constitution proclaims that “he may, on extraordinary occasions, convene both Houses” — and for Congress to even consider refusing to allow an address that has become routine itself seeming qualifies as an “extraordinary occasion”.

  • freehand

    If Raven had said ” The US isn’t in the middle of the Ebola epidemic that has killed millions.’ the misinterpretation might have a stronger case, but using the indefinite article as well as our current ambiance of political hysteria (I think) made it clear that Raven was criticizing the Tea Bagger fear-mongering

    .

    Compare to this hypothetical statement:

    “The US isn’t in the middle of a world-devastating nuclear war.”

    .

    This is not claiming that there is, in fact, such an ongoing war, but rather that some people’s predictions have failed to come true.

    .

    “The US isn’t in the middle of a vast gun confiscation.”

    “The US isn’t in the middle of a Hellish wave of anti-Christian terrorism.”

    ….and so on.