Obama should be held to his promises

With three weeks until the biggest election in modern history, politicians on all levels of government are now in full campaign mode, including Barack Obama and John McCain. Many will make promises, and many have already had to deal with false promises theyâÄôve made in the past. With the aura of âÄúhopeâÄù and âÄúchangeâÄù behind him, Obama has made promises over the past few months that would make the Carlson accounting department dizzy. Campaign promises are not always something to worry about âÄî except this year, they are. If Obama wins, he will undoubtedly have a Democratic Congress that will push through much of his proposed agenda. In fact, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Obama have already been meeting to see which $150 billion spending bill they can pass in the next few months so he can sign it immediately after being sworn into office. This kind of behavior should be a red flag to anyone out there who is voting for Obama because of spending cut promises. With this new bill and the $850 billion bailout bill, Congress will have spent 25 percent more on two bills in a couple of months than it has during the entire war in Iraq ($700 billion). Obama has made a laundry list of promises to voters across the country in an effort to turn the focus on the economy in his favor. Many of these promises will be thrown to the wayside if Obama is elected. Here are just a few examples: Obama has pledged $65 billion per year in new government health insurance. It is appalling, after all of the recent events caused in part by failed government policies in the economy, that people are still willing to entrust it with the duty of providing health insurance. Additionally, Obama wants to give $500 million to religious groups to do what they already do âÄî except that with this money, they wonâÄôt be allowed to hire or provide services based on religion. This bizarre version of church and state separation is not only ignorant, but it undermines the entire principal of faith-based charity. These organizations help people because they believe in it, not because the government wants them to or because they will pay the bill. Obama has even promised $50 million yearly to help men be better fathers. How nice. IâÄôm eager to have the White House teaching families how to function. ObamaâÄôs plan would run $18 billion more per year through the extremely bureaucratic Department of Education âÄî a role that is best served by state governments. As far as cuts, ObamaâÄôs plan banks on war costs dwindling, especially when he is able to withdraw troops immediately from Iraq, despite outstanding progress towards peace in the region. Obama has changed his position on this. In March, 2007, Obama voted for a measure that set a timeline of troop withdrawal and put stability and security on the back burner. Thankfully, this measure did not pass. Actually, the word ObamaâÄôs campaign used was to âÄúrefineâÄù their position. Regardless, Obama is counting on money from the Iraq stabilization process to fund his big government plans, so he may be enticed to withdraw them prematurely and lose all the progress we have worked several years to build there. Other than the war, Obama has not released programs he wants to cut or minimize to create the $130 billion needed for his new spending or for the $80 billion in tax cuts he wants to give the middle class. As a matter of record, Obama voted against small business owners âÄî the same people that fall into the 5 percent of people not covered under his 95 percent tax cut plan. Unfortunately, those business owners often reinvest much of their income in their businesses, creating jobs and growing the U.S. economy. A tax increase for them would be detrimental to all citizens, even low-income workers that have their jobs because of lower corporate taxes. Obama has proposed an increase in taxes for these people. In ObamaâÄôs short time as a senator, he was labeled a Democratic Party loyalist. His calls for working âÄúacross the aisleâÄù are only statements, because there is little record to support he has done this much. The nonpartisan tax policy center report claims ObamaâÄôs moves would increase the deficit by $3.3 billion over ten years. The punch line is that Obama has proposed too many spending increases and too few budget cuts. With all that said, he wants additional cuts for most taxpayers, while raising taxes on the ones that create jobs. Obama has also blamed President George W. Bush and McCain for the economic crisis weâÄôre facing, but the record reflects otherwise. In 2006, McCain asked for more regulation of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac âÄî the same organization that contributed thousands to ObamaâÄôs campaign. The Federal Election Commission reports Obama was the second highest recipient of Fannie and Freddie funds in the Senate, behind Sen. Christopher Dodd of Connecticut. Do not let rhetoric or poll numbers fool you; Obama has made a lot of promises to the American people. Obama knows that campaign promises go unanswered, and once heâÄôs elected, it will be too late to make him answer to accusations. If we, as voters, decide to vote for hype rather than experience and judgment, Obama wins. If he does win, my hope is that voters will dust off the promises and the great speeches and really compare record to campaign slogans. Andy Post welcomes comments at [email protected]