Former U.S. Congressman Vito Fossella tells Newsmax that voters clearly stated they wanted to “put the brakes on” Obamacare by electing Republicans in the November elections.
He also criticizes moves favored by Democrats and the Obama administration in the war on terror, and stresses the importance of the Patriot Act in safeguarding America.
Fossella served 12 years in the House as the only Republican congressman from New York City, leaving office in 2009.
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A federal judge in Florida recently ruled that the healthcare reform legislation is unconstitutional. In an exclusive interview with Newsmax.TV, Fossella was asked whether the Obama administration could be held in contempt of court for continuing to implement it.
“It’s possible,” Fossella says.
“I think this goes back to the inherent arrogance of those who rammed this bill down the American people’s throat. And to a large part the American people responded in November, basically saying, ‘Time out, put the brakes on this thing. We don’t want it. We don’t want it in its current form.’
“So credit the judge who put the brakes on it. I think eventually it will go to the Supreme Court, and I would not be surprised if the court finds a way to at least repeal or eliminate the individual mandate. And it’s possible the whole bill could be shut down.”
Tea party Republicans in the House joined liberal Democrats last week in refusing to extend certain provisions of the Patriot Act, although the House has since voted to extend the provisions. Discussing the importance of the act, Fossella says: “Coming up on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, which is why the Patriot Act was passed in the first place, I think we’ve got to be pretty comfortable knowing that there hasn’t been a successful attack on our nation.
“So I’d be very cautious about saying these provisions are nonsense, are useless. It’s okay to have a debate. It’s okay to tweak some of these provisions. But we shouldn’t just throw them out the door and say from now on we’re going to be safe.
“In fact, as we sit here you have some terrorism threats that are escalating to the degree that we haven’t seen in years. So we have to be very very cautious about striking this balance.”
Asked about the Obama administration’s performance in dealing with the terrorist threat, Fossella tells Newsmax: “What I do think is that we have to become more aggressive and assertive to those who want to do us harm.
“There were those who criticized President Bush for being too tough on terrorism, but he called it what it was and he took the fight to the terrorists wherever they were. And I think in part that’s why we kept this country safe.
“What I don’t like over the past several years is the trend away from calling the problem what it is. You never hear the administration refer to radical Islamic terrorists, as if it’s a bad thing. Everybody’s lumped under the same umbrella.
“You want to try terrorists, the ones who want to kill American citizens and our way of life, in civilian courts and give them the same constitutional rights that every American citizen enjoys? You want to close Guantanamo Bay that houses the most notorious terrorists in the world? Those are the things — which fortunately, by the way, haven’t been implemented — I think we can have an honest disagreement on, because when all is said and done, if we allow those who want to do us harm the opportunity to do so, people will get killed.”
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