Published on TheHill.com on February 5, 2013
Barack Obama won re-election by perpetrating three frauds.
1.) He sold the American people on the idea that we were in the midst of a slow recovery. Given time, he assured us, we would grow our way out of the recession and all would be fine. Nonsense. We now learn — three months after the balloting — that we were entering a recession even as the president spoke. The fourth quarter of 2012 showed a negative growth rate of 0.1 percent, the first contraction in three years. Far from standing on the verge of prosperity, we were tumbling into a new recession.
The question for us now is whether the contraction will continue and grow into a full-fledged recession (the economic definition of a recession is two consecutive quarters of contraction). My bet is that in July — when the second-quarter data is in — it will be evident that we are in a recession and have been since we reelected the president based on his erroneous assertion that we were in recovery.
The fourth quarter of 2012 data does not reflect the impact of the tax increases on the wealthy upon which Obama insisted, or the onset of higher insurance premiums due to ObamaCare, or the re-imposition of the 6.3 percent payroll tax (temporarily reduced to 4.3 percent two years ago).
These looming tax increases, indeed, may have artificially increased economic growth in the last quarter. When income and capital gains rates go up, there is normally an augmented stream of revenue in the quarter before the increases take effect, as people scramble to take profits and capital gains before the higher tax rates come into play. In 1986, during the quarters before Ronald Reagan raised the capital gains tax from 20 percent to 28 percent, revenues from the gains tax almost doubled to $328 billion as investors struggled to get in under the older, lower tax rate.
Now, with the new capital gains rate, income tax bracket and payroll taxes in effect, the impact on the economy should be deadening. Together, they will likely amount to as much as $300 billion — 2 percent of gross domestic product — enough by itself to cause recession.
Not since Woodrow Wilson was narrowly reelected in 1916 on the slogan “he kept us out of war” only to declare war six months after Election Day have we been as clearly misled on the key issue of a presidential election.
2.) The administration’s efforts to characterize the Benghazi attack as the effect of a peaceful demonstration over a movie that got out of hand were not debunked until weeks after the attack. In the interim, Obama sold us on the notion that he had killed al Qaeda when he slew Osama bin Laden. The attack, on the anniversary of 9/11, was obviously a pre-meditated terrorist assault that killed our ambassador.
If Tony Blair was discredited for “sexing up” a memo about the ability of Saddam Hussein to launch a WMD attack on the United Kingdom, Obama should be held accountable for his overt lie of linking the film to the attack so as imply a cause/effect relationship.
3.) The third cover-up is only gradually becoming apparent — the impact of ObamaCare. Now, after the election is over, the IRS informs us that the minimum health insurance premium for a policy that will meet federal specifications is $20,000 for a family of five. Using Obama’s standard definition of a “hardship” as a premium that exceeds 9 percent of a person’s income, that would mean that health insurance that meets Obama’s requirements would be a hardship for any family of five making up to $220,000 a year. The gold-plating of requirements for insurance included in the Affordable Care Act is going to drive health insurance out of the reach of tens of millions of people and will lead to a vast decrease — not an increase — in coverage.
But Obama craftily did not issue these regulations or the IRS specifications until after the election was over. The third cover-up.
This election was won by deception and deceit covered up by a compliant media.