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Beware the Third Shoe On The Ides of May!

The GOP strives for traction against Obama

This is Dark Cloud on Wednesday, May 15, 2013.

The third shoe has dropped, to mangled metaphors. Obama now has three alleged scandals to deal with, and the GOP hopes to use them to stall the Healthcare Act and - dare they dream? - impeach Obama and, with luck, defuse any enthusiasm for Hillary Clinton, whose popularity horrifies conservatives. Her husband still ranks higher than the most popular Republican at the moment, and she is by far the most popular and competent potential candidate for President in 2016. As of now, nobody in the GOP stands a chance against her.

But that's now. Things can change fast.

The three scandals are:

1.The IRS has admitted proactively to irregular interest in the tax free status of the Tea Party and other conservative groups and investigated them.

2. The Justice Department got the emails of Associated Press reporters.

3. The assault last year in Benghazi, where four victims including an American ambassador, were murdered. Clinton, being Secretary of State would seem vulnerable, and Susan Rice has already been sidelined for her role of repeating what the Department gave her.

Benghazi starts, oddly enough, with a movie trailer for a movie never actually made to be called 'The Innocence of Muslims.' It was to be a two hour epic, but never got further than two 15 minute movie trailers that were put up on YouTube last July. It was a hit on the Prophet Mohammed, and clearly an effort to get sympathy for Egyptian Copts, who are Christian, who have long complained of persecution, and who financed the movie. The trailers were heavily overdubbed and the cast complained that the new script was not the one they performed. There were riots against this nonexistent movie along with a fatwa against the producer and this gave Egypt a chance to discuss freedom of speech and censorship during the Arab Autumn. The producer, having lied to authorities, will serve a four year probation after one year in prison.

Republicans are furious that we could not save the four victims, and 41% are calling Benghazi the “biggest political scandal in American history.” Of that 41 percent, 39 percent don't know where it is. "10 percent said it’s in Egypt, 9 percent in Iran, 6 percent in Cuba, 5 percent in Syria, 4 percent in Iraq, and 1 percent each in North Korea and Liberia, with 4 percent unwilling to venture a guess." That, according the PPP poll. It's in Libya, which most cannot find on a map.

The White House not unreasonably thought the deaths were due to the movie riots and did not call it terrorism right off. A reasonable assumption, but wrong. The GOP got their hands on email they claimed shows the White House tried to remove references to the incident as a terrorist attack and lied to the public and was covering for the State Department.

CNN blew that out of the water, because the complete email does not support it. Rather the opposite. The GOP lied. They're hoping to get Obama on something, anything. Doubtful that this is it.

The IRS issue looks far worse, absent the fact that Bush and GOP did the same thing, only against liberal and progressive churches, often black, that played political roles in elections which the tax free are not allowed to do. It's all related to the objections to the Citizens United case, and the influence of distant money for local elections. One major problem is that churches, through sermons and peer pressure, have always played a political role from the days of slavery in this nation. Legally, how are they different from the Tea Party or MoveOn? It's a subject that damns everyone, and it is important the Democrats admit as much and, perhaps, get all the dubious entities' tax free exemptions removed in politics. Won't happen, but can diffuse the attack.

The most serious of the charges is the violation of a free press by the Justice Department getting the AP emails and probably a lot more. Since the JD hasn't said under what law or reason they justify their actions, it's still possible they might not have actually broken the law, although they did break their own guidelines. But it's Benghazi that gets the headlines. If there were a shred of evidence or indication that the death of Ambassador Stephens' group was due to callous incompetence, or the treason of actually favoring Islam's benthic depths over American lives, there would be open revolt from within and the media would be swamped with bureaucrats with loud whistles. But they know it was not. It was a screw up that could have been done better.