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Will the Senate Rubber-Stamp Power’s Contempt?

July 19th, 2013 - 3:17 pm

Refusing to answer proper questions in a legitimate governmental hearing is contemptuous — not just in the rhetorical sense but in the legal sense. To analogize: In court proceeding, if a witness refuses to provide a responsive answer to a question, the judge will strike the non-responsive answer from the record and direct the witness to address the question head-on. If the dodging persists, the witness can be held in contempt and imprisoned. Such episodes may also form the basis for an obstruction-of-justice charge.

It is just as illegal to obstruct a congressional proceeding.

Contempt of Congress and obstruction of the Senate’s constitutional advice-and-consent obligation is the only way to interpret the performance of Samantha Power during Wednesday’s hearing on her nomination by President Obama to become U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.

Power has a long history of decrying “crimes committed, sponsored, or permitted by the United States.” Of demanding that the United States apologize for its sundry “sins.” Of condemning “the role U.S. political, economic and military power has played in denying such freedoms to others.” Of calling for “not tweaking but overhauling” of U.S. foreign policy. Of seeking to subordinate American national interests to “the interests of the global commons.” Of expressly calling for the U.S. to surrender sovereignty to international institutions (such as the U.N. and the International Criminal Court). And of agitating for “a historical reckoning” of America’s alleged crimes. Not content with various American acts of contrition, she would have our government institute “a doctrine of the mea culpa” as a pillar of our foreign policy. By her lights, at least up until this week’s confirmation conversion, our nation is an arrogant, exploitative serial criminal with much to apologize for.

With that as background, we turn to Ms. Power’s exchange with Senator Marco Rubio at the hearing. Power Line’s Scott Johnson recounts it well. The senator tried to assess the nominee’s fitness and inclination to represent American national interests at the U.N. — rather than the U.N.’s interests at the White House — by probing Power’s assertions about America’s overarching criminality and her specific allegation that “I would categorize the Rwanda situation as a crime … permitted by the United States.” Power’s obdurate refusal to answer the questions is summarized by Fox News as follows.  Rubio asked Power, “Which [crimes] did the U.S. commit or sponsor that you were referring to?”

“Again sir, I think this is the greatest country on Earth,” Power responded. “We have nothing to apologize for.”

Rubio wasn’t placated with the nebulous reply, pressing her to explain further, saying, “So, you don’t have any in mind now…”

“I will not apologize for America. I will stand very proudly, if confirmed, behind the U.S. placard,” said Power.

Just when it appears the exchange may be over … think again. Rubio trudges onward. “I understand,” he says, “but do you think the U.S. has sponsored crimes…?”

“I believe the U.S. is the greatest country on earth,” Power reiterates.

And on it went.

Now, I confess that I have not been as outraged by the Power nomination as a number of my friends, who are campaigning vigorously against it. Mind you, I am no Power fan. I’m quite sure she’d be dreadful. But the problem here is not so much the quality of this particular nominee — who happens to be a powerful influence on Obama, the guy making policy, and will remain one regardless of what administration post she fills. The main problem is the U.N. itself. It is an anti-American institution, an international enterprise in eroding the sovereignty, liberty and security of the American people — with a big old bull’s-eye on the Bill of Rights.

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Top Rated Comments   
If the Congress of this country had a backbone and did it's job instead of delegating all it's constitutional duties to others their would be no "contempt of congress". Congress has no one to blame for the lack of respect they receive then themselves. Congress, because of it's control of the nations purse strings should be the strongest branch of our government, but in reality it has become the weakest through apathy. Rubber stamp self serving politicians are a disservice to our country, that is why Congress is held in such low esteem. The patriots are out in the hinderlands of the nation and the cowards are in Washington DC.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Being anti-American is a feature, not a bug in this administration.

However, Andy...the point is...no American should approve without resistance or principled dissent putting yet another into a role to do us harm.

Of course, it is futile. We recognize the futility fully. The feckless and hapless Republicans are completely incapable of bringing to light the open hostility held by the leftists...so we are left to our own devices.

Clearly the Agenda Media, (along with Agenda Entertainment and Agenda Academia) covers up the treason as active co-conspirators.

It's a nightmare we are living as patriots.

But, it does not mean we have to sleep through it...or surrender to it.

Oppose each and every traitor with every fibre of our being. We can do nothing less.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Alger Hiss, arch-communist spy and infiltrator, virtually birthed the UN. We need to get out of the UN, yesterday. You say it can't happen, not likely, and all that. Well: The US is doomed if it tarries longer among its sworn enemies. But then, maybe that's the plan.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (23)
All Comments   (23)
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Samantha Powers not only exhibited Contempt for Congress- but on a much more serious note. Does Ms.Powers hold dual citizenship? Most Irish born and their offspring have dual citizenship . Then Ms.Powers by extension has also EU citizenship. Senators should ask Ms.Powers whether or not she has dual citizenship- before making their informed judgment.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
my friend's step-mother makes $73 every hour on the laptop. She has been without a job for nine months but last month her check was $12750 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more on this site... www.Can99.com
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
There are 54 Democrats (who vote as a bloc); 2 Independents who vote with the Democrats on most issues; (straight-talking) John McCain's posse of 6 RINOs who vote with the GOP establishment's big government &crony capitalism policies; and another 4 RINOs like Susan Collins, Jeff Flake, Mark Kirk, and Saxby Chambliss who can come off the establishment bench if needed. Harry Reid has control of 66 votes 2/3 of the Senate), so he can and will deliver anything Obama wants. The only thing McConnell and the establishment Republicans will fight for is their seats at the table (Washington DC) and their place on the Beltway B list for social events.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Andrew nails it. While anyone nominated by O to this post will of course be a left wing wacko, they should show a least a bit statesmanship or tact. Rubio did himself proud by showing us the arrogance and insolence of Power. He made her contempt for the Senate obvious to anyone paying attention. Every Senator should be personally offended and those consenting to this nomination should feel only shame.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Andy's being a little disingenuous here. He knows Senate Democrats are "all in" with this administration--just as he knows Republicans don't have the spine for taking them on.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
The great Republican Hispanic hope Rubio is a total failure. First there was his going along with the latest McCain gang on immigration and now this hapless performance in front of someone treating him with contempt. Don't any of the hapless Republican's have any idea what they are doing? Rubio's inability or unwillingness to point out Power's contemptible behavior is a total failure on his part. It reminds me of Rep. Issa's haplessness in front of that IRS woman Lois Lehrner when she pulled that contempt testifying testifying to her innocense but then taking the 5th in front of him while he sat there silent and open mouthed but failed to call her on her contempt. Don't these Republican's ever get any training in how to conduct a congressional hearing before they are allowed to attend one? The witnesses make them look like complete fools. Are then not even smart enough to have an old wise person on their staff who can whisper in their ear during the hearing and tell them what fools they are making of themselves and what to do about it and how to confront these hostile witnesses? I am embarrassed to ever say I ever supported Marco Rubio. What hope is there if these Republican fools are so hapless in their oversight roles. Sam Ervin must me overturning and laughing in his grave. I would not be surprised if Rubio now votes to confirm her. Great piece Mr. McCarthy. You are one of the few great ones on our side left in this country.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Slight OT. Do you think Senator Liz Cheney would smack her around and lobby heavily for non-confirmation?
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yeah. I'd love to see Liz in the Senate.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
(self-respect ...) Does the Senate have any?

No. Note what you mean by self-respect.

To some degree, it's apparently a generational thing, even with Harry Reid who is no spring chicken. Previous generations cared what they accomplished, or didn't. GenX is famous for "roles not goals". As long as folk like Reid are senatoring, they apparently don't care what it is they are doing. The trip is their self-respect, not the destination, and a trip to purgatory is just fine with them, as long as they're driving.

From another perspective it's just a sign that there is no opposition to the Obamanation. The Republicans are still playing to an MSM that stopped caring a generation ago, and now simply obstructs anything resembling a Republican, or more to the point anything not resembling a Democrat.

I don't know that we need to pull out of the UN entirely, just reduce it to the debating and chowder society it has always been, the theatrical aspects have a certain positive value, I think. OTOH, if you actually read the charter and take it seriously - then yes, Écrasez l'Infâme.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
It will be a complete shock if she isn't confirmed. The elite, too-long-serving Republicans are every bit as corrupt as the Democrats. They try to hide it to a degree but everyone but their poor dumb constituents sees through them. It is these contemptible RINOS and the new young crew that held such promise but turned out to be more Quislings are killing the GOP. Why bother to vote when your candidates are in bed with the enemy?
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
So what? Does the senate have any power of enforcement? That would be the DOJ, right? And if the Senate itself has any power of enforcement, whatever power that would be now rests in the hands of the party in power. That would be the Anti-American Party. McCarthy is right. You could replace Samantha Power with any other nominee of the president and you would have the same problem. The problem is the party.
39 weeks ago
39 weeks ago Link To Comment
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