The Job Should Be Pretty Easy

May 20, 2014

I was struck by a Politico poll that just came out, and want to share some of my thoughts with you. felder

The poll paints a dismal picture for Democrats in the upcoming midterm election, and should illuminate the strategy for Republicans. Sadly, the Republican party is not united in the obvious conclusions contained in the data. 55% believe the country is headed in the wrong direction, 51% are generally pessimistic about the outlook for the United States, and the economy is far and away the #1 concern for American voters, at 50%. Health care runs a distant second at 12%, with every other major concern classification at or below 4%.

48% want an outright repeal of the Unaffordable Care Act. 16% want to preserve it as is. 89% respond that the health care law is “very important” in their candidate support. 52% vs. 48% oppose same-sex marriage with 62% saying that the issue is “very important” to their candidate support. 21% more strongly oppose legalizing marijuana than strongly support it.

Barack Obama’s job performance disapproval rating stands at 59%, with 41% registering strong disapproval. Count me in that 41%.

41% consider themselves conservative, and 17% consider themselves liberal.

Yet, the poll shows that Democrats in Congress enjoy a 5-point approval lead over Republicans. 15% of voters strongly approve of Obama. 4% strongly approve of Congressional Republicans. This should be a clarion call for Congressional Republicans. Reconciling this with Obama’s general disapproval rating and the rest of the data illustrates that where Republicans in Congress fail their duty to limit the President, their approval suffers.

Stated another way, if the President is so unpopular, his political opponents in Congress cannot be, so perhaps they are ineffective opponents. The conclusion that Republicans should passionately differentiate themselves from Obama is inescapable. That they often do not is one of my main reasons for running. “Reaching across the aisle” with this president does not pay.  He opposes Conservatism with the fire of a thousand suns, thus leaving no room for compromise or coalition in matters of principle. Additionally, it seems politically unwise to cooperate, no matter what liberal Republicans say about it. When Congressional Republicans attack their colleagues for opposing Obama, they do a disservice to all conservatives and the Republican brand, both on a principle and a practical level.

Politicians consistently blame one another for flip-flopping, taking the easy way out, pandering, or otherwise exploiting events for political advantage without regard to principle. Obama butters his bread with this cliche in near-daily defenses of matters like the ATF selling untraceable assault weaponry to Mexican drug cartels, the IRS torment of conservatives, and the carnage in Benghazi. When Obama campaigned against Bush (as he still does perennially), he said that allowing our national debt to rise was “…irresponsible. It’s unpatriotic.” But when it was his turn to fight like a good liberal for stupid economic policy, he spun the broken record, accusing Republicans of politics, “They’re not focused on you. They’re focused on politics. They’re focused on trying to mess with me.”

You, Mr. Obama, are messing with us. No one is messing with you. You are insulated from the effects of the American decline you engineered.

But it is an interesting accusation. He calls doing what you were elected to do “playing politics.” Despite the negative spin, if a politician responds according to the will of her constituents, she’s doing her job correctly, assuming no Constitutional compromise. This is a representative republic. Or at least it was.

The job is to serve the constituent, not rule over her. The job must be performed within the framework of The Constitution, so when constituents want the unconstitutional, their request must be refused. But beyond that fundamental, I do not see why anyone should fear the accusation of political expedience when the constituent’s voice is heard and honored. Such an accusation should be worn as a badge of honor.

I, for one, will not be afraid of this attack. I will not bend to pressure to subvert my constituents or the Constitution, and I pledge to uphold the duties of both responding to my constituents, and limiting the power of the President to the best of my ability, when the office oversteps its Constitutional bounds.

Based on the polling data, the job should be pretty easy.

About Cassie Felder –

Cassie Felder has lived in South Louisiana nearly her entire life. She was raised in Hammond, studied and lived in New Orleans, and now lives in Baton Rouge with her husband, Matt, where she started two small businesses. She spent a year at Boston University School of Law in advanced tax law studies after graduating from Tulane Law School. Katrina forced Cassie and her husband to move to Austin, TX for a short time, but the call home was too strong to ignore.

Cassie loves South Louisiana and everything it represents. She is a gun enthusiast who loves the New Orleans Saints, the LSU Tigers, boiled crawfish, and the heritage and good people here. She brings passion and intensity to everything she does, from courtrooms to boardrooms or the campaign trail. Her parents are small business owners for over 35 years, and instilled in Cassie loyalty, determination, and integrity through their own successes, setbacks, perseverance, and values.

Cassie works very hard in and for her local community. She is a member of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber’s Small Business Council, BRAC’s Legislative Committee, BRAC’s Fresh Perspective’s Council, and serves as chairperson of BRAC’s SBC Advocacy Committee. She served on the Baton Rouge Blue Ribbon Commission on Transit, and she currently serves as a board member of Baton Rouge Opera Guild, and Sense, a local entrepreneur support organization. She graduated from the Baton Rouge Leadership Class of 2013, was awarded Baton Rouge Business Report’s “Forty Under 40” in 2012, and teaches an annual tax prep seminar for the Baton Rouge Association of Women Attorneys.

As your next Congresswoman, Cassie will bring that same ethic and passion to forge the national policies that so deeply affect us all here in South Louisiana, and she will defend the freedoms that created the strongest economy in world history. She will make you proud of Louisiana, and she will work to restore pride in America.

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