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There is a big mess brewing. The lame-duck Obama administration has launched a mad scramble to throw up as many hurdles, and to plant as many last-minute land mines as possible against the new American president. In his final days of office, Barack Obama has initiated a major flurry of new executive orders, directives and regulations, thousands of them, that he is piling into the federal books.
Politico reported a year ago that Obama, the epitome free-lunch politician, would be opening the floodgates for about 4,000 new regulations in his last year in office. The rules being imposed at this late date are known as “midnight regulations”, and are mostly related to Obama proposals that have so far been rejected or ignored by Congress. So, this president has decided to “shove (them) down the nation’s gullet”, as reported by the Wall Street Journal’s Kimberly Strassel. Midnight regulations are defined as those being promulgated by an outgoing president between Election Day and Inauguration Day of a new president.
Get this: Obama took executive fiat action to ban offshore drilling on 115 million acres near the coast of Alaska and 3.8 million acres off the American Atlantic Coast, with the added gall to command that his action is legally unchangeable and permanent. This was on top of his recent vindictive move to close down the Dakota Access Pipeline, a project that is 95% complete.
Also, last week Obama issued a regulation on coal, scheduled to take effect January 19, which will result in a massive job-kill and will make coal so expensive to mine that no companies will want to mine it and consumers won’t want to use it. He has insisted that his Department of Labor must slap regulations on the business of giving retirement advice, new rules which are litigation magnets and so onerous and expensive that small investors will be left with few financial professionals willing to give them advice. Obama has imposed new regulations on methane gas and on renewable fuel standards. Other last minute rules he is pounding into place are being imposed on “commodities speculation, immigrant workers, for-profit colleges,… workplace hazards, gun sellers, nutrition labels, and energy efficiency”.
On Friday, Obama destroyed the close relationship between the U.S. and Israel, our strongest and oldest ally in the Middle East. He broke a 25-year old agreement between the two countries by secretly promoting and then allowing the United Nations to pass a condemnation resolution against Israel that is deeply anti-Israel, pushes Israel to agree to borders that would be a suicide pact, and which will make peace more difficult for Israel to achieve. This action defines the Obama presidency. He leaves this mess for Donald Trump to clean up.
Obama has let loose 175 Guantanamo prison detainees, and intends to release 19 more by January 20. These are violent terrorists, threats to the U.S.
Concerning terrorists, Obama also junked a national security anti-terror program that tracked visitors from countries harboring active terrorist groups. Obama dismantled the program so that Trump can no longer use it, giving a weak excuse as his reason. This will force Trump to rebuild the program from scratch in order to vet Muslims coming to America from high terrorist threat countries.
Finally, reports are surfacing that Obama’s staff is dragging their feet, failing to cooperate, and providing the Trump transition team with “skewed or incomplete information,” along with “lectures about their duties on climate change”.
One senses that the purpose of these Obama parting shots is 1) to stage a last-ditch effort to impose his socialist will on America, and 2) to undermine and promote the failure of the Trump administration by forcing Trump to deal with thousands of small and large controversial problems that are being dumped on his plate. Obama’s “Midnight Regulations Express” needs to be derailed and melted down, and every single Obama executive order, directive and new regulation ought to become ash in Trump’s White House furnace.
Whatever happened to leaving office gracefully?
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