Honduran Parliament to Obama: Pound sand

posted at 11:36 am on December 3, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Smart power:

MPs in Honduras have voted overwhelmingly against reinstating President Manuel Zelaya, shrugging off international pressure four months after a coup that has isolated one of the poorest countries in the Americas.

As the vote continued, more than two-thirds of members of Congress had voted not to return the deposed president to power for the remainder of his term, which ends on January 27, as Washington and many Latin American governments had urged.

Honduran media put the ongoing vote at 98-12, well in excess of the simple majority needed in the 128-member, single-chamber Congress for the vote against restoring Mr Zelaya to succeed.

The vote is a slap in the face to the Obama administration, which has insisted that the parliament conducted a coup by removing Zelaya from office.  After getting slapped by Congress and its Law Library for misstating the facts of Zelaya’s removal, the State Department reluctantly agreed to recognize the regularly-scheduled Honduran presidential election and let Honduras’ parliament determine Zelaya’s status.  The White House publicly expected Honduras to restore Zelaya in some capacity for a short transition period.

However, as statements by MPs on the floor show, Obama and his team miscalculated the depth of the insult felt by Hondurans over the US intervention:

Politician after politician insisted that they were right the first time when they voted to oust Mr Zelaya for ignoring a Supreme Court order to cancel a referendum on changing the constitution. …

“My vote is [a lesson] for anyone who pretends to perpetuate himself in power. My vote is so that my son can look at me and say ‘Dad, you defended democracy,” said Antonio Rivera of Mr Lobo’s conservative National Party.

Now what?  The US position had been that Zelaya had to be reinstated, but their shift makes that unclear.  Brazil, Venezuela, and Nicaragua won’t recognize the election results.  Costa Rica, which tried to reach a negotiated solution that would have put Zelaya back in office but almost powerless, has already announced that they will accept the election results.   The US decision will likely signal the rest of the OAS states as to whether a free election should be recognized, or whether the US wants to ignore the will of the people just to score some political points and foist Zelaya onto an unwilling populace.

That’s about as lose-lose as one will see in diplomacy, and it was utterly, utterly avoidable.  The best thing that Obama can do is to swallow his medicine and learn to shut up. (via Fausta)


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air’s fair: shouldn’t the Honduran government now investigate whether Obama’s legally qualified for office?

PersonFromPorlock on December 3, 2009 at 12:40 PM

I bet the CIA and Russian KGB already know the answer to that.

eaglesdontflock on December 3, 2009 at 12:45 PM

***
T.V. showed Zelaya and his wife’s living conditions in the Brazilian embassy building. They are living on a couple of rugs on the floor–and will be arrested and put on trial if they leave!
***
Good job, Honduras. Defended their Constitution, let the people vote in the new government. Prevented another Cuban or Venezuelan type takeover by a “presidente por vida”. And our clueless Comrade Obama (PBUH) and our brilliant Secretary of State–Hillary Clinton–threw in with the losers.
***
John Bibb
***

rocketman on December 3, 2009 at 12:45 PM

Freedom loving world to America: Sorry, we’d like Bush back.

gwelf on December 3, 2009 at 12:30 PM

If only!

LSUMama on December 3, 2009 at 12:46 PM

I honestly don’t get Obama. On one hand, he says America needs to stay out of other countries business, and affairs, and on the other, he tries to assert himself, as if he’s relevant to other countries governments, and decisions, regarding their nation.

Talk about talking out both sides of your @rse. Kudos to Honduras, and their governments elected officials, for standing up for Democracy, and against the coming tyrany.

capejasmine on December 3, 2009 at 12:53 PM

but can’t Barry Hussein remain in power for ever too?????

SDarchitect on December 3, 2009 at 11:39 AM

I still think this is the only thing that explains Zero’s strange position on Honduras.

Back when this happened, the kool-Aid buzz was still in full force and he had 70% approval. I think then he figured he’d be anointed president for life by acclimation.

Of course, today things are different. My feeling is the voters can’t WAIT for 2012 to come so they can undo the mistake of 2008.

wildcat84 on December 3, 2009 at 1:01 PM

My vote is so that my son can look at me and say ‘Dad, you defended democracy,” said Antonio Rivera of Mr Lobo’s conservative National Party.

On the same day that Waxman proposes having govt take over the newspapers.

Almost enough to make me cry.

MarkTheGreat on December 3, 2009 at 1:01 PM

I honestly don’t get Obama. On one hand, he says America needs to stay out of other countries business, and affairs, and on the other, he tries to assert himself, as if he’s relevant to other countries governments, and decisions, regarding their nation. Talk about talking out both sides of your @rse.
capejasmine on December 3, 2009 at 12:53 PM

Your mistake is listening to anything Obama SAYS in the first place.

If you tune out all the disinformation, and only pay attention to what Barak Hussein Obama actually DOES, you’ll see that he is always perfectly consistent.

logis on December 3, 2009 at 1:09 PM

Unless and until we have a major house cleaning of our Foggy Bottom ‘professional’ leftist diplomatic corps, including the SoS, and UN ambassador Susan Rice, we’ll continue to see this disgraceful toadying to leftist dictators and psychotic despots worldwide. Viva Honduras citizens for having the ‘stones’ to tell Obama to kiss off!!

Bob in VA on December 3, 2009 at 1:12 PM

Unless and until we have a major house cleaning of our Foggy Bottom ‘professional’ leftist diplomatic corps, including the SoS, and UN ambassador Susan Rice, we’ll continue to see this disgraceful toadying to leftist dictators and psychotic despots worldwide. Viva Honduras citizens for having the ’stones’ to tell Obama to kiss off!!

Bob in VA on December 3, 2009 at 1:12 PM

Yep, as we saw in the Bush administration.

The next Republican President needs to clean house there, or if they are obstructed from doing so, take a page out of Obama’s playbook, use “czars” to direct the administration’s foreign policy and turn the state department into a paper tiger.

wildcat84 on December 3, 2009 at 1:15 PM

Fair’s fair: shouldn’t the Honduran government now investigate whether Obama’s legally qualified for office?

PersonFromPorlock on December 3, 2009 at 12:40 PM

Good point.

mr.blacksheep on December 3, 2009 at 1:18 PM

The elected Honduran officials have shown the world what true leadership is all about. Standing strong for freedom and the rule of law even when the whole world (literally) is against you. Micheletti has shown enormous courage and has been steadfast in doing what is right for his country. Obama should bow to this man.

inmypajamas on December 3, 2009 at 1:22 PM

Deer Comrades Lula, Chavez, y Hermanos Castros,
Wha happond? El revolucion waz no suppoze to turn out theez way! I thought that weeth your support, we would keeck out el contras and make me El Presidente por vida! Now the federali gringos en El Estados Unidos will geev me no mas dinero. Does thees mean I get no mas blondie muchachas to fock? WTF, hombres?
Su Amigo,
MelZel

sawbuck on December 3, 2009 at 1:28 PM

When he’s hell-bent on doing bad things internationally, from Honduras to Copenhagen, there’s a lot of good in having Obama seen as weak.

He’s now been told to wee-wee up a rope by just about everyone, the Israelis, the Chinese, the Indians, the Hondurans.

JEM on December 3, 2009 at 1:45 PM

Why change the Constitution when you can ignore it?

donh525 on December 3, 2009 at 12:11 PM

But, thanks to FOX more and more people are hearing for the first time what our constitution actually says and how far our elected officials, who vow to defend and protect it have strayed. It is only because of the average American’s ignorance and inattention that the liberals in this country have been able to SUBVERT our constitution.

I was as guilty of it in the past as anyone, but yes, it’s changing. This boy king, would be tyrant is gonna be the catalyst for revival.

Jvette on December 3, 2009 at 1:55 PM

I have a suggestion for Hot Air. Can you guys code it so that, when a blog post is linked to Facebook, the photo on your home page comes up as one of the options for the Facebook icon? I think it would help people like me drive traffic to your site. Your logo, or no image at all, are not as attention-getting.

joe_doufu on December 3, 2009 at 2:09 PM

This small nation, isolated, bereft of friends, with no certainty of regaining equality among the family of nations unless it essentially cedes its sovereignty to outside interests, has given us all a lesson in integrity, courage, honor, noble manful behavior, and the rule of law that should ring through the ages.

And our present government of the United States has equally given us a lesson in self-interest, muddled thinking, and ideological fellow-traveling that unfortunately shall also ring through the ages to our shame. At least in prior days when we intervened for the Dole Company someone in the U.S. got profit out of our collective ignominy. Here, all is loss, red ink borne of stupidity.

I congratulate the men and women of Honduras who have acted in honor and decency. Never was a tyrant disposed with greater humanity or less bloodshed. In the future, if I wish to know what the manly strength of our Founding Fathers must have appeared like, I will go speak to a Honduran.

Horatius on December 3, 2009 at 2:09 PM

The best thing that Obama can do is to swallow his medicine and learn to shut up.

Like Chris Matthews he is entirely incapable of shutting up, much less engaging his brain before spewing forth verbal diarrhea.

ya2daup on December 3, 2009 at 2:14 PM

Our doctors and hospitals are already moving to Costa Rica. Maybe those seeking intellectual and economic freedom can add Honduras to that list. This could make for a nice comparison test in a small place. El Salvador and Nicaragua under retread Leftists on one side and Costa Rica and Honduras on the other. All of our Democratic Party affiliated lawyers, actors and writers can go to the the first pair and all of the Republican Party affiliated doctors, engineers and entrepreneurs can go to the second pair. See which prospers.

LifeofTheMind on December 3, 2009 at 2:26 PM

We will see whether this Administration understands how to cut its losses and move on, as, for example, Reagan did with Lebanon after the Marine barracks bombing. If it doesn’t, this is going to get ugly.

I’m guessing it’s going to get ugly. We have an Administration being dictated to by John Kerry, who never met a central American communist he didn’t like.

rockmom on December 3, 2009 at 2:31 PM

Our doctors and hospitals are already moving to Costa Rica. Maybe those seeking intellectual and economic freedom can add Honduras to that list. This could make for a nice comparison test in a small place. El Salvador and Nicaragua under retread Leftists on one side and Costa Rica and Honduras on the other. All of our Democratic Party affiliated lawyers, actors and writers can go to the the first pair and all of the Republican Party affiliated doctors, engineers and entrepreneurs can go to the second pair. See which prospers.

LifeofTheMind on December 3, 2009 at 2:26 PM

Interestingly, a certain Medical Doctor relative of mine has a house and property in Costa Rica. It wouldn’t shock me, though, if the Historic Fust Africo-Pacificist Presuhdent started subtly encouraging marxist revolutions in certain inconveniently free Central American nations.

fronclynne on December 3, 2009 at 2:38 PM

I certainly am happy the adults are in charge at the White House. /

coldwarrior on December 3, 2009 at 3:01 PM

Honduran MPs seem to have some common sense, politically speaking. When 56% of the population voted for Porfirio Lubo for President, the Honduran MPs thought it would be politically favorable to accept their choice, and not impose someone else! The MPs might have to face the voters soon, too!

Porfirio Lubo to Obama: I won, fair and square. Now butt out!

Steve Z on December 3, 2009 at 3:04 PM

However, as statements by MPs on the floor show, Obama and his team miscalculated the depth of the insult felt by Hondurans over the US intervention

So when is Barry going to APOLOGIZE for HIS meddling?

GarandFan on December 3, 2009 at 3:58 PM

Guess he his apologies haven’t been sincere enough. He needs to fly overseas and do it some more I guess. Maybe break out a few more “reset buttons” as well.

Dr. ZhivBlago on December 3, 2009 at 4:25 PM

Why can’t our Constitution’s ideological enemies like Hussein, Kerry, Boxer et al just get the F OUT of here?? Cuba will gladly take them back.

leftnomore on December 3, 2009 at 4:39 PM

The best thing that Obama can do is to swallow his medicine and learn to shut up.

I’d expect Bill Clinton to publicly admit he committed perjury in the Paula Jones trial before expecting Barry to admit fault in this situation – much less any other one of his many diplomatic screwups over the past year.

Wanderlust on December 3, 2009 at 5:51 PM

What admirable people are the Hondurans for not succumbing to the ObaMao and Sotomayor definitions of constitutionality.

onlineanalyst on December 3, 2009 at 7:17 PM

Lesson for the US military:

When you remove a President Obama for egregious Constitutional violations shoot disappear hold him incommunicado in Leavenworth military prison.

bill30097 on December 3, 2009 at 7:24 PM

God bless Honduras!

MCGIRV on December 3, 2009 at 8:02 PM

Comment pages: 1 2