After watching the House Intelligence Committee for the past two weeks I feel safe to say the the Republicans of 2019 have remembered well the lessons of the McCarthy era (1947-195?). Senator ‘Tail-Gunner Joe’ McCarthy must be very proud about how the current crop of Republican Representatives and Senators are dealing with the Presidency of Donald J. Trump. He just might be a bit confused about how they can be accepting support from Russia, but I’m sure it can be explained to him that while it is the Russians they are no longer Communists. I’m sure he is hoping for some new neighbors to talk with soon.
Yes, that was snarky. Truth be known the not all of the Republicans in Congress are on board with what Majority Leader Sen. McConnell And ranking minority member Rep. Nunes. But way to many of them are and way too many are intimidated into silence. We have seen Rep. Nunes bring out all the old McCarthy Era tactics to obfuscate, deflect, and intimidate anyone who would dare oppose their agenda.
Even before the hearings started they were attempting to rest control of the hearing from the Majority with a great long list of witnesses that have nothing to do with the subject of impeachment. Save one, they wished to call the ‘whistleblower’ even though his/hers anonymity is protected by law. When this failed they cried that the President was being denied the right of facing his ‘accuser’ even though the hearing is an investigation is not a trial.
Once the hearing was called to order they tried and true ‘Point of Order’ tactic to attempt to interrupt and control the hearing, again even though it was against the rule(s) passed by the House. When this tactic backfired (the most likely candidate to challenge Rep. Stefanik raised over a million dollars in the day(s) following) they moved on to the one tactic the chair had to allow. Attacking the witnesses. The attacks range from the petty, calling an officer in uniform ‘Mr.’ instead of by his rank (the rank was shown on his name card) to personal and professional attacks. But mostly they stuck to speaking lots and lots of nonsense about the Bindens, Hillary, the Muller report, and any and all conspiracy Theories to distract.
In some cases they fell back on the old courtroom tactic of attempting to harrass the witness. This was done mostly by Rep. James Jordan in his most supercilious voice. In no case did it seem to work and in one case, with Dr. Hill, it seems to have backfired badly. In fact the whole Republican defense strategy seems to have failed. These passed two week we got to see dedicated people give the facts, as they know them, to the appropriate authority, the House of Representatives and the American People.
It is now up to us to be as brave as they and to send this current crop of Republicans to join their ‘godfather’ in the “Ninth Circle of Hell”.