WIRE: Obama allies getting harder to find…

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BY JULIE PACE
AP WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama is finding himself with few friends in Washington.

His former Pentagon chief is criticizing his foreign policy. Longtime political advisers are questioning his campaign strategy. And Democrats locked in tough midterm campaigns don’t want Obama anywhere near them between now and Election Day.

The disenchantment with Obama is in part a reflection of inevitable fatigue with a president entering his final years in office. But some Democrats say it is also a consequence of the president’s insular approach to governing and his preference for relying on a small cadre of White House advisers, leaving him with few loyal allies on Capitol Hill or elsewhere.

“This president is supremely independent,” said Paul Begala, a Democratic strategist and longtime adviser to President Bill Clinton. “In many ways that is a very good thing. He probably came to the presidency owing less to other people than any president in memory. The risk is that independence can morph into isolation.”

While White House officials dispute the notion of an isolated or weakened president, there’s little doubt that Obama’s standing with the American people and his own party has fallen since his resounding re-election in 2012. Battered by a flurry of crises at home and abroad, the president’s approval rating has hovered near record lows for much of the year. His party is at risk of losing the Senate in the November midterms and not one Democrat locked in a close race has chosen to make a campaign appearance alongside the president thus far.

It’s against that backdrop that some of Obama’s longtime advisers have begun levying unsparing criticism, most notably Leon Panetta, the widely respected former congressman who served as CIA director and defense secretary in Obama’s first term. In a new memoir and a series of interviews, Panetta has taken aim at both Obama’s foreign policy decision-making and overall leadership skills.

Panetta writes that as Pentagon chief, he feared that Obama’s withdrawal of all U.S. troops from Iraq in late 2011 could put that country at risk of becoming “a new haven for terrorists to plot attacks against the U.S.” The U.S. is now launching airstrikes against a militant group in Iraq, as well as Syria, that Obama administration officials warn could ultimately pose a threat to the West.

But Panetta’s most scathing critique is reserved for Obama’s leadership style. Writing about Obama’s inability to stop deep budget cuts at the Pentagon, Panetta said the episode reflected the president’s “most conspicuous weakness, a frustrating reticence to engage his opponents and rally support for his cause.”

“Too often, in my view, the president relies on the logic of a law professor rather than the passion of a leader,” Panetta added.

Panetta’s critique echoes regular complaints from lawmakers in both parties who say the president has made little effort to forge relationships on Capitol Hill and often keeps lawmakers out of the loop on decision-making. Indeed, the president rarely makes trips to Capitol Hill or socializes with lawmakers, preferring instead to spend his time with his family and a small team of longtime aides.

The president has repeatedly dismissed the notion that more extracurricular activities, particularly with Republicans, would help him muscle legislation through Congress.

“When I’m over here at the congressional picnic and folks are coming up and taking pictures with their family, I promise you, Michelle and I are very nice to them and we have a wonderful time,” Obama said last year. “But it doesn’t prevent them from going onto the floor of the House and blasting me for being a big-spending socialist.”

But the criticism from Panetta and others has suggested that Obama may not only lack a reserve of support outside the administration, but that he may also struggle to command loyalty from those who have advised him most closely.

Beyond Panetta, Obama has endured criticism of his foreign policy this year from two other former Cabinet secretaries: former Defense Secretary Robert Gates and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. On Sunday, Obama also took a hit from his longtime political adviser David Axelrod, who said Obama made “a mistake” when he said last week that his economic policies were on the ballot in November.

“I wouldn’t put that line there,” Axelrod said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

White House advisers and others close to the president have dismissed the flood of criticism and the distance from Democrats as part of the natural arc of the presidency.

“This is very much the product of the six-year itch,” said Anita Dunn, Obama’s former White House communications director. “If you’re sitting in the White House, you put your head down and you do your job and realize that at the end of the day, you still have two more years to do a great deal.”

But Jim Manley, a former senior adviser to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said that job may only get harder if Democrats in Washington turn even further away from the president as the race to replace him gets underway.

“The fact of the matter is the president and his team have done a pretty poor job of trying to build of a group of loyal Democrats,” Manley said. “They don’t have too deep of a well to dip into anymore.”

TREASONOUS: Hey Congress, If This is Not an Impeachable Act, Exactly What Would Be?

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September 24, 2014 By Matthew Burke

The Obama IRS targeted groups educating on the Constitution and the Bill of Rights

It is a well-known and admitted fact that the Obama Regime, using the IRS, targeted pro-freedom Tea Party and other conservative groups for their political beliefs, who were also political opponents of Barack Obama, a clear violation of the First Amendment.

But on Tuesday, Georgetown law professor Nicholas Quinn Rosenkranz reported that the tyranny went even further than just targeting Obama’s political opponents.

The politically weaponized Obama IRS expanded their targeting beyond the Tea Party, targeting groups that were “educating on the “Constitution and Bill of Rights,” in January of 2012, just months before the election in November of 2012.

In a timeline on page 30 of the Inspector General’s report, the IG states that the Obama IRS added the new criteria in January of 2012, because the July 2011 criteria they used to harass patriotic American citizens wasn’t specific enough.

Here’s the exact verbiage from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, in the report titled, “Inappropriate Criteria Were Used to Identify Tax-Exempt Applications for Review, from page 30 (emphasis added):
Criteria changed to “Political action type organizations involved in limiting/expanding government, educating on the constitution and bill of rights, social economic reform/movement” based on Determinations Unit concerns that the July 2011 criteria was too generic.
On page 38 of the report, the Inspector General found that the Obama IRS, on January 25, 2012, expanded their BOLO (Be on the Lookout) criteria updating it to include “political type organizations involved in “educating on the Constitution and Bill of Rights.”

When an administration targets American citizens for teaching their fellow citizens about the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights (since government schools aren’t), the very Constitution they take an oath to defend and uphold, this is a treasonous act at worst and an impeachable and illegal act at least. If this is not an impeachable act, exactly what would be?

Republican Richard Nixon was threatened with impeachment for much less (and at least had the decency to resign), and Democrat Bill Clinton was actually impeached (in the House but not convicted in the Senate) for much less as well. If Obama is not impeached and removed from office, both of these men are owed huge apologies.

Why are you, Congress, giving Obama, whose multiple crimes against the U.S. Constitution are in the dozens, a pass?

BILL CLINTON: OBAMA’S LEADERSHIP WILL BE JUDGED AFTER ISIL STRIKES

Clinton said Obama administration’s strategy would receive backlash

BY: Washington Free Beacon Staff
September 24, 2014 8:35 am

Former President Bill Clinton believes President Obama will be judged based on his strategy to combat the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) and other extremist groups in the region. Clinton speculated Obama would garner support for his strategy to “degrade and destroy” ISIL because the American people want the executive to appear strong.

“I think that the American people generally tend to judge the president by whether we are more secure and look strong, so I think they do support what he’s decided to do,” Clinton said.

The former president said he agreed with Obama and most Americans on keeping U.S. ground troops out of the conflict. Clinton said ISIL would prefer the U.S. fight with ground troops. “[Obama] hasn’t been suckered into that,” he said.

Clinton added that it was evident the Obama administration’s strategy would receive backlash. “[Obama] had certain elements of the media and Republican Party who were always against him,” Clinton said.

The U.S. military began conducting direct airstrikes this week against ISIL and Khorasan, another extremist group in the region.

OBAMA HEADING BACK TO DC IN RARE VACATION BREAK

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BY JULIE PACE
AP WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT

EDGARTOWN, Mass. (AP) — President Barack Obama is getting off the island.

In a rare move for him, the president planned a break in the middle of his Martha’s Vineyard vacation to return to Washington on Sunday night for unspecified meetings with Vice President Joe Biden and other advisers.

The White House has been cagey about why the president needs to be back in Washington for those discussions. Part of the decision appears aimed at countering criticism that Obama is spending two weeks on a resort island in the midst of so many foreign and domestic crises.

Yet those crises turned the first week of Obama’s vacation into a working holiday. He made on-camera statements on U.S. military action in Iraq and the clashes between police and protesters in Ferguson, Missouri. He called foreign leaders to discuss the tensions between Ukraine and Russia, as well as between Israel and Hamas.

“I think it’s fair to say there are, of course, ongoing complicated situations in the world, and that’s why you’ve seen the president stay engaged,” White House spokesman Eric Schultz said.

Obama is scheduled to return to Martha’s Vineyard on Tuesday and stay through next weekend.

Even though work has occupied much of Obama’s first week on vacation, he still found plenty of time to golf, go to the beach with his family and go out to dinner on the island. He hit the golf course one more time Sunday ahead of his departure, joining two aides and former NBA player Alonzo Mourning for an afternoon round.

Earlier in the week, Obama attended a birthday party for Democratic adviser Vernon Jordan’s wife, where he spent time with former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham Clinton.

That get-together between the former rivals-turned-partners added another complicated dynamic to Obama’s vacation. Just as Obama was arriving on Martha’s Vineyard, an interview with the former secretary of state was published in which she levied some of her sharpest criticism of Obama’s foreign policy.

Clinton later promised she and Obama would “hug it out” when they saw each other at Jordan’s party. No reporters were allowed in, so it’s not clear whether there was any hugging, but the White House said the president danced to nearly every song.

OBAMA FLASHBACK: ‘I SAID I’D END THE WAR IN IRAQ AND I ENDED IT’

White House support for jihadist groups in Libya & Syria greased the skids for ISIS

by PAUL JOSEPH WATSON | AUGUST 8, 2014

President Obama’s decision to launch military action in Iraq belies public statements made over the past two years in which Obama and other top Democratic mouthpieces bragged about the administration ending the war in Iraq.

News coverage of Obama’s announcement to begin air strikes on ISIS targets as part of a “humanitarian” outreach is totally absent any mention of the fact that the Obama administration greased the skids for the growth and spread of ISIS as a result of its support for jihadists in both Libya and Syria.

The administration sent billions of dollars in aid and weapons to rebel groups in Syria, many of which became allied with or directly joined ISIS. As the New York Times reported, the CIA has also overseen “a secret airlift of arms and equipment” to rebels since early 2012.

Many of the rebel leaders in Libya whom the White House backed in their overthrow of Colonel Gaddafi also later crossed into Syria to join jihadist groups in the fight against Bashar al-Assad.

Indeed, as Rand Paul explained, the Obama administration created a “jihadist wonderland” by supporting militants in Libya and Syria which led directly to the rise of ISIS.

In addition to a policy which directly encouraged the spread of militant extremists throughout the region, the United States’ top allies – Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and Turkey – have all trained, funded and armed ISIS terrorists.

The video above speaks for itself but here’s a selection of choice quotes;

“Remind them that this is the president that ended the war in Iraq.” Michelle Obama.

“He has taken good care of our men and women in uniform, he has ended the war in Iraq.” Bill Clinton.

“We ended the war in Iraq.” Joe Biden.

“I’ve kept the commitments I’ve made, I told you we’d end the war in Iraq, we did.” President Obama.

“You know I say what I mean and I mean what I say – I said I’d end the war in Iraq, I ended it.” President Obama.

“Everything that American troops have done in Iraq, all the fighting and all the dying, the bleeding, and the building and the training and the partnering – all of it has led to this moment of success….we’re leaving behind a sovereign, stable and self-reliant Iraq.” President Obama.

While Obama and his acolytes repeatedly bragged about ending the war in Iraq, his administration’s policy of backing jihadist militants now threatens to enflame a new war which could engulf the entire middle east.