What is Treason? Is Congress Guilty?
Is Congress guilty of treason? Treason is generally considered the act of betraying one's country and the crime is considered to be not only reprehensible, but a capital crime. Depending upon the nature and severity of the treasonous act, the penalty can be death. The betrayal of one's country can take many forms; it can go well beyond selling state secrets or working to advocate for or plotting the violent overthrow of the government. It is possible to make a case that the deliberate tanking of a country's economy solely for political gain is treason, and on that basis I suggest that the Republican members of our Congress are guilty of treason.
It is now widely known that on the very eve of the Presidential inauguration in January of 2009, fifteen or so key Republican legislators, flanked by their wordsmith, Frank Luntz, and a formerly disgraced Republican Speaker of the House (Newt Gingrich), plotted to destroy a Presidency and to tank the economy. They agreed that they would make President Obama a one-term President by any means necessary, and if that meant destroying an already drowning economy, well- Damn the torpedoes and full speed ahead!
To their credit, both John Boehner and Mitch McConnell were absent (only because they supposedly hate Frank Luntz), but were both brought up to speed and swore their allegiance, not to the flag, but to the unholy alliance. These legislators would refuse to cooperate in any way, shape or form with the new President. They premeditated. They made the conscious decision to stand united and obstruct any effort by this new President to salvage what was left of the economy. In their minds, the result would be well worth the collateral damage they would inflict on the citizens and the country that they had sworn to protect. If these "statesmen" stood together, united, the country would NOT recover from the worst financial crisis the country had seen since the Great Depression and the people they screwed in the process would blame the President and he would in turn become a one-term President. Blame the Congress? Never! They were simply being partisans, not traitors...
Even when they went so far as to oppose anything and everything that they themselves had always supported? Well, when the new President decided to give some traditional Republican ideas a shot, the Republicans immediately said no. Not on your life, Mr. Obama! We think your ideas smack of socialism and besides that, we don't think you are an American! These Congressional Republicans would not lift one finger to help this President succeed, because if he succeeded, the suffering of the American people might end sooner rather than later and that could defeat the Master Plan.
No one would call them out and they had hoped that no one would find out about that winter's night meeting that began as a sour grapes session, but quickly turned into a daring game of chicken, during which they plotted the death of a Presidency and the continued economic ruin of millions of Americans.
Treason By Any Other Name Is Still Treason
Is there anything that this President could have suggested that would have garnered any support from those on the Republican side of the aisle? I think not. Supporting this President would have been anathema. Many names and labels have been given to the Republican dogma currently being preached in Congress. Many who are so concerned with political correctness have skated around the behavior, fearful maybe, of being considered unfair. Democrats for the most part have called it obstructionism, while still others have labeled it Big "C" conservatism or extreme partisanship. Few have dared to call it what it really is, but I contend that treason by any other name is still treason.