Robert Stein 1924-2014

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Friday, January 04, 2013

Tea Party's Joe McCarthy Moment

“At long last, have you left no sense of decency?”

In 1954, an aging lawyer named Joseph Welch asked that question of Sen. Joe McCarthy and brought to its end an era of bizarre intimidation of Congress and the nation.

Now, after lawmakers’ lame-duck failure to provide relief for Hurricane Sandy victims, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie rises up to lead a chorus of Northeast office holders to ask the question of John Boehner and his Tea Party hostage-takers.

The money will be forthcoming in the new Congress, but that moment of callous disregard may not be easily forgotten. Passing a fiscal cliff bill larded with pork, the House failed to act on the distress of Americans uprooted by the October storm. Millions were handed out to race tracks, imported rum makers and coal-mining on Indian lands, but not a cent to those who had lost their homes.

“There's only one group to blame for the continued suffering of these innocent victims, the House majority and their speaker, John Boehner,” Christie roared. “Do your job and come through for the people of this country.”

Politically, the GOP is almost comatose in the Atlantic states but two years from now other voters will certainly be reminded by Democrats of the Tea Party’s priorities on the subject of innocent suffering and money.

Now on the eve of Barack Obama's re-inauguration, somewhere in demagogue slayer’s heaven Joe Welch must be smiling. 

Update: The Club for Growth promises to punish House members who voted Thursday to add $9.7-billion to the National Flood Insurance Program in a belated bipartisan 354-67 gesture.
Time for all Neanderthals to come to the aid of their party.  

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