Muftic: Closing arguments, beware the Ides of October and what is at stake
November 1, 2016
Ancient Romans had a superstition that on a certain date, something bad would happen and they expressed it with “beware the Ides of March”. We should rephrase that as the “beware the Ides (or near Ides) of October”, since that is when political dirty tricks and surprises seem to come out of the blue. The FBI dropped a potential game changer 11 days before Nov. 8 when they wrote a letter to Congressional leadership saying they found more emails that pertained to Hillary Clinton’s email server.
Timing is everything. The surprises coming so late in the game give the targets no time to defend themselves, especially when reports are the FBI investigators sat on this information for weeks, waiting until October 27 to tell Director Comey, putting him in an untenable situation, danged if he did and did if he did not.
It is even more of a surprise when the surprise is unprecedented, with its director violating his own FBI department and Department of Justice rules not to spring findings related to a candidate within the 60-day pre-election day period or that they violated their own FBI rules not to discuss if and what was being investigated until the investigation was completed. How did it happen that the FBI announced they were undertaking more investigations of Hillary Clinton’s emails without having even reviewed the material that appeared to be “pertinent” and were not sent by her?
Another surprise was sudden attention on the long predicted increase in Obamacare premiums. If you get your insurance from an exchange and you get a subsidy or you get your insurance from your employer, or military related provider, or are on Medicare and Medicaid, you will not see an increase due to Obamacare.premiums because they do not get insurance through the Obamacare system, but due to a general increase in health care costs which would have risen anyway. Those who earn too much money to be qualified for subsidies.who do get insurance from the state Obamacare exchanges will see the hike. Congress can fix that if it wants to.
Who occupies the White House will have the power to influence our lives by interpreting legislation broadly, appointing agreeing cabinet officials, and nominating candidates to fill Supreme Court and lower court vacancies.Whether you still have to vote, know that whatever your motivation, love, hate, protest, your vote for a candidate or non vote or a third party vote is then all that really counts to determine who will occupy the White House and run the Senate.
Here is what at stake : If Donald Trump and the GOP continue to be the majority in both houses of Congress and control the White House and Supreme Court appointee process, women’s control of their reproductive lives is in danger as Roe v Wade could be overturned. Obamacare will be repealed with no effective and comparable replacement for the 20 million losing insurance. The GOP still beats its drums for repeal of Obamacare, but after years of trying, they have found no replacement to cover similar numbers with similar consumer protections. Donald Trump proposes enormous tax cuts for the rich depending on old failed trickle down theories, and will increase the gap between the rich and the middle class. Fossil fuels will get preferential treatment.
What is even more critical are the issues of war and peace: Donald Trump’s stream of conscious uncontrolled demagogic mouth vs. skilled diplomatic experience of Hillary Clinton is the choice we must make in a dangerous world where one word or phrase could harm American national security, and provoke a needless war or a frightening incident that leads us to the brink.
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