Friday, July 20, 2012

What if the GOP always reacted to their wingnuts this way?

Perhaps you've heard that Rep. Michele Bachmann has been doing her best impersonation of Joe McCarthy lately.
The Minnesota Republican, joined by Republican Reps. Trent Franks, Louie Gohmert, Thomas Rooney and Lynn Westmoreland, sent letters to the inspectors general of five government agencies responsible for national security to demand they investigate infiltration by the Muslim Brotherhood into the highest reaches of the federal government. In particular, Bachmann singled out Huma Abedin, the wife of former congressman Anthony Weiner and a top aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. In case Abedin hasn’t already been through enough already, Bachmann is now questioning her loyalty to the U.S. by asserting that Abedin has three family members who are connected to the Muslim Brotherhood (Abedin is Muslim). She’s been targeted before by anti-Muslim activists, and Bachmann notes that Abedin’s position “affords her routine access to the Secretary and to policy-making.” Bachmann also claims the state has “taken actions recently that have been enormously favorable to the Muslim Brotherhood and its interests.”
I think its important to note that the GOP did not take one of their usual positions which would have been to either join in or do everything they can to ignore her. Several of them stood up and spoke out.

Senator John McCain:
“The allegations about Huma Abedin and the report from which they are drawn are nothing less than an unwarranted and unfounded attack on an honorable citizen, a dedicated American and a loyal public servant,” the Arizona senator continued. “These attacks have no logic, no basis and no merit. And they need to stop. They need to stop now.”

“When anyone — not least, a member of Congress — launches specious and degrading attacks against fellow Americans on the basis of nothing more than fear of who they are and ignorance of what they stand for, it defames the spirit of our nation and we all grow poorer because of it,” he added.
Speaker John Boehner:
I haven’t seen the letter, but — I don’t know Huma, but from everything I do know of her, she has a sterling character. And I think accusations like this being thrown around are pretty dangerous.
Former Bachmann Campaign Manager Ed Rollins:
“I have been a practitioner of tough politics for many decades,” Ed Rollins wrote in an op-ed for FOX News. “There is little that amazes me and even less that shocks me. I have to say that Congresswoman Michele Bachmann’s outrageous and false charges against a top aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Huma Abedin reaches that threshold.

“Her unsubstantiated charge against Abedin, a widely respected top aide to Secretary Hillary Clinton, accusing her of some sort of far-fetched connection to the Muslim brotherhood, is extreme and dishonest,” he continued...

“Having worked for Congressman Bachman’s campaign for president, I am fully aware that she sometimes has difficulty with her facts, but this is downright vicious and reaches the late Senator Joe McCarthy level,” he wrote.
I am more than happy to give credit where its due and so I'll gladly acknowledge that these guys got this one right.

But... (you could tell there was one coming, couldn't you?)

This is hardly the first time a Republican member of Congress has said something incendiary. There really are too many to chronicle. But as an example, Rep. Allen West has certainly thrown around his fair share:

Many Congressional Democrats are communists

Rep. Keith Ellison (the only Muslim member of Congress) is the antithesis of this country's founding principles

Comparing Democrats to Nazi propagandists

And we won't even get into what some GOP spokespeople have said about President Obama (ei, Donald Trump, Rush Limbaugh, etc).

Where has the outrage been? And just imagine the effect it would have had on our public discourse if you'd been calling shit like this out all along.

I'm happy to watch the GOP shut down the vile Bachmann was spewing. I hope its a sign of more of that to come. A party that was truly committed to what American stands for would do nothing less.


  1. I'm very glad to see them speaking out, too. My impression always was that John McCain and Hillary had a very good and close working relationship and that's why I thought he spoke out. She was endangered by that stupid remark of Bachman's when Hillary was in Egypt. I believe British press and others were taking about what idiots the GOP were concerning it too. There was also the British parliament re Romney fundraising in London:

    "But the two receptions that Mr. Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee, will hold for donors next week during a swing through Europe are turning into an ill-timed public relations headache for him."

    They are getting a lot of attention for their terrible behavior. I suspect the motivation was that they actually put SOS Clinton in harms way. I'm glad they finally spoke out.

    1. Cantor is asking for tolerance, too. I believe I read yesterday or the day before that his campaign is in trouble.

      "House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Thursday urged his party, and the nation, to guard against intolerance on issues ranging from gay marriage to the role of Muslims in the government, arguing the country’s diversity of opinion and acceptance are part of America’s basic fabric.

      “There can’t be some kind of monolithic opinion handed down from the government or a political party. I don’t think we’re monolithic beings,” Cantor, a Virginia Republican, said in an interview with BuzzFeed."