Opinion: Editorials

Examiner Editorial: Obama, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi are America's great dividers

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Opinion,Editorial,Barack Obama,Republican Party,Democratic Party,Harry Reid,Nancy Pelosi,Washington Examiner,Magazine

Harry Reid's hometown newspaper - the Las Vegas Review-Journal - recently offered an important observation: “As majority leader of the U.S. Senate, Harry Reid is supposed to lead. The Nevada Democrat should be focused on the concerns of Americans and on shaping debate on important matters of national interest. Sen. Reid is doing neither. In fact, he's working so hard to ignore the taxpaying public's priorities that he has become a parody of his position.”

The Review-Journal pointed to Reid's obsession with “billionaire oil businessmen Charles and David Koch,” citing the “over-the-top frequency in recent months -- calling them out by name more than 100 times on the Senate floor alone. He inserts a reference to the brothers in virtually every statement he makes, whether he's asked about the economy or his support for an increase in the federal minimum wage.” For Reid, the Koch brothers represent the allegedly malevolent influence of “the Rich” and the many injustices of inequality that are the result.

President Obama hasn't trashed the Kochs nearly as often as Reid, but the president and the Nevada senator are clearly on the same page. During a Dec. 4, 2013, speech at the Center for American Progress in which the word “inequality” appeared 26 times, Obama called reversing “the dangerous and growing inequality” in America “the defining challenge of our time.” The situation has become so bad, according to Obama, that “the combined trends of increased inequality and decreasing mobility pose a fundamental threat to the American Dream, our way of life, and what we stand for around the globe.”

Then there is Nancy Pelosi. This statement appears on the House Minority Leader’s web site: “Democrats are building an economic approach that lifts every American, not just the privileged few. The average American CEO earns more before lunchtime in one day than a minimum wage worker earns all year. This is not the kind of America we want our children to grow up in. Today's economic challenges result from years of Republican inaction and failed policies that have left more and more Americans behind.” In Pelosi’s world, Democrats are for “every American,” while Republicans favor only “the privileged few.”

These are not new themes from Democrats. To hear Obama and his partisan colleagues tell it in 2012, Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney's greatest sin was the fact he was immensely successful in his business career. In what was quite possibly the most intense, expensive and sustained negative ad campaign in American political history, Obama “defined” Romney as unfit for the White House mainly because he was a rich man.

Whether it’s the incessant attacks on the Koch brothers, or the constant repetition of the idea that America’s biggest problem is “inequality,” or the “privileged few” smear against the GOP, dividing Americans is the basic strategy of these Democratic leaders. For them, the few can only become wealthy by oppressing the many. They are the great dividers.

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