By V. Susan Hutchinson.
Tom Rice, the man representing the 7th Congressional district of South Carolina in the U.S. House of Representatives, is a hypocrite. In fact, his blatant political hypocrisy is on full display in two recent taxpayer financed newsletters emailed to constituents.
One of these updates was posted Jan. 19, just before Martin Luther King Jr Day. Rice included a famous quote from the civil rights leader: “Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that”. How nice. How touching that he would think to share those words.
However, in doing an online search regarding flyers recently posted in the Myrtle Beach area by the Patriot Front new Nazi white supremacist group, not a single comment from the Congressman could be found. Not one. You would think if there were racist posters being put up in his own district he would say something, anything.
One can only assume he either doesn’t know, which shows how out of touch he is regarding actual displays of racism, or he doesn’t consider it sufficiently important because he’s so caught up in the Republican determination to blindly support a racist and treasonous president.
In either case, shame on him.
Rice’s second blatant display of hypocrisy surrounds border security. In the January 19 newsletter, he claims: “Democrats made the disaster relief bill subject to opening the government without border security funding.”
Tom Rice wants to look like he cares about South Carolina by saying Democrats used disaster relief funding as a political tool in the border wall/government shutdown standoff. On January 16, three days before Rice made that statement, the Democratic-led House passed a disaster relief bill (H.R. 268, Supplemental Appropriations Act) that included funding the federal government through February 8 with no border wall funding. Tom Rice voted “No”.
The Shutdown Fiasco
The most recent District Update from Rice addresses the three-week Continuing Resolution to fund the government, with no funding for a border wall, that Trump signed late last week. Although his update claims he wants a long-term agreement that includes disaster relief, it is mostly a rant about how the Democrats need to work with Trump instead of against him regarding what Rice calls, “the crisis at our southern border”.
If we really have a “crisis” on the border with Mexico, why did Trump dispatch troops just before the November mid-term election and then slowly decrease their numbers following the election? Why does Trump claim he can call a national emergency at the border when there is no such emergency?
The last national emergency was declared by President Bush immediately after 9/11, a real national emergency.
And, Then There Is This
Tom Rice, in 2013, sponsored H.R. 442, Directing the House of Representatives to Bring Civil Action for Declaratory or Injunctive Relief of Challenge to Certain Policies and Actions Taken by the Executive Branch. The bill died, so in 2014 he tried again with H. Res 772, Uphold the Oath Americans Trust and Honor Resolution. It didn’t get far either.
Both measures included the following:
Whereas President Obama and officials in his administration have frequently overstepped the limits placed on executive branch power by the Constitution;
Whereas because of President Obama’s continuing failure to faithfully execute the laws, his administration’s actions cannot be addressed by the enactment of new laws, because Congress cannot assume that the President will execute the new laws any more faithfully than the laws he has already ignored, leaving Congress with no legislative remedy to prevent the establishment of what is in effect an imperial presidency.
Rice issued a press release about H. Res 772. In it he uses Article I, Section 8, Clause 4 of the US Constitution to support the proposed resolution and made the following statement:
This resolution will restore legislative order and force the President to govern within his authority.
Barack Obama was attempting to address the DACA issue and Tom Rice felt he was overstepping his authority as president and proposed bringing civil actions against Obama personally, not against just anyone sitting in the oval office.
So why isn’t Rice sponsoring similar legislation with respect to our would-be dictator, Donald Trump?
Trump dispatched troops, for political reasons, to the southern border and refuses to work with Democrats on alternatives to a wall to shore up the border; all while spreading outrageous lies about immigrants and drugs crossing into the US outside of official ports of entry. This shows the wall is more about racism than about security. And Tom Rice is more than willing to support him.
This president believes he can claim executive authority, with the eager assistance of Rice and the rest of the Republicans in Congress, to get what he wants without facing consequences for this abuse of power.
In his first run for Congress in 2012, Myrtle Beach Online made the following statement about Rice:
If Rice is elected, Republicans will expect him to stick to the party line in D.C.
In 2019, Tom Rice is still toeing the party line, except it now includes blaming the Democrats for a government shutdown the president said he would own and supporting Trump vastly overstepping the authority of the presidency, to the point of potential constitutional crisis.
Congressman Rice must be defeated in 2020.