As the Republican Party and conservative media continually criticizes President Obama for his official versus campaign travel, their tactic seems to actually reveal cracks in their confidence to overtake the White House. The claim is the President’s use of Air Force One blurs the line between campaign and official business. But they neglect to remember the use of official modes of transport by every other sitting US President seeking re-election in recent memory. Did we hear calls for investigations during George W. Bush’s 2004 campaign? Did we hear them about Clinton’s? How about George HW Bush’s or Reagan’s? There may have been some musings but calls for investigations? Nope. What makes this time different? Well we have a Republican Party which has shifted itself into the extreme Right corner of the political spectrum, a party that has all but disregarded the needs of the country deciding instead to focus on it’s own desire to regain goverment control and a Democrat in the Oval Office. All that remains is match to set it aflame. This attempt to bring fomal investigations upon a sitting president over the means of his travel during a campaign season illustrates a growing desperation within a party which has become way too eager to take control.
Republicans request investigation of Obama travel
(CNN) – President Barack Obama isn’t just playing politics – he may be committing fraud on the taxpayer’s dime, the Republican National Committee charged on Wednesday.
In a letter to the Government Accountability Office from RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, the committee requested an investigation into Obama’s recent travel – including trips this week to Iowa and North Carolina – alleging those trips were more political than official.
The White House and Obama For America, the president’s reelection campaign, go to great lengths to distinguish between official and campaign activities, as do elected officials and their reelection efforts at various levels of government.
But Obama’s recent speeches, the RNC said in the letter, were “events widely reported to be equivalent to campaign rallies.” The committee’s case sees supporting evidence in a list of the states Obama has visited this month, including the general election battlegrounds of Florida, Iowa, Michigan, North Carolina and Ohio.
It’s a blurry line, to some extent.
“This speech was high on class warfare, slogans, and divisive campaign-style rhetoric,” the letter said of a recent official event earlier this month in Florida. [The same could be said about the State of the Union Address thisyear]
Responding to the letter, White House Spokesman Eric Schultz maintained the president’s travel was part of his “official responsibility” to leave Washington and hear from citizens about major issues.
“This week’s travel has been part of the President’s official responsibility to get outside of Washington, DC, hear from students, and discuss stopping interest rates on their loans from doubling in July – just like Friday’s trip to Fort Stewart in Hinesville, Georgia to meet with troops, veterans, and military families is likewise part of the President’s official responsibilities. When there is political travel, we follow all rules and regulations that all other Administrations have followed,” Schultz said in the statement.”
Republicans may see the opposite spin in the pushback from another Obama reelection official.
“There’s no doubt that Governor (Mitt) Romney has an advantage,” campaign senior adviser David Axelrod told reporters, referencing the presumptive GOP presidential nominee. “He hasn’t had a job in six years, and he famously jokes that he’s unemployed, but he’s been running for president for six solid years. And he’s got every day, 24 hours a day to run for president. Now we don’t have that. We don’t have that advantage.”