Paul R. Hollrah
Something is Rotten...in the US Senate
What is perhaps the most remarkable event in the history of the U.S.
Senate occurred on May 21, 1856. As Sen. Charles Sumner (R-MA) denounced
an attack by 800 pro-slavery Democrats on the small abolitionist town of
Lawrence, Kansas, he was suddenly and viciously attacked from behind by
Preston Brooks, a South Carolina Democrat. Brooks struck Sumner over the
head repeatedly with a cane... knocking him unconscious... and when his
Republican colleagues rushed to his side they were attacked by other
Democrats and a major fist fight ensued.
Unfortunately, Democrats of today are no less hateful than their 19th
century forbears. To prove the point we need only recall the Supreme
Court confirmation hearings of Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas. What
likely prevents today’s Democrats from engaging in the same level of
violence is the presence of TV cameras inside the Senate chamber and
Yes, a few Republicans have overstepped the bounds of propriety and have
paid a high price for their indiscretions. Sen. Bob Packwood (R-OR)
kissed one of his female aides, uninvited, and Democrats destroyed his
career over the incident. Sen. Trent Lott (R-MS) made a patronizing
remark at Sen. Strom Thurmond’s 100th birthday party and
Democrats used the incident to drive him from his leadership position.
Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK) failed to report the value of repairs to his
Alaska home, paid for by an oilfield contractor, and he is now on his
way to prison. And Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID) took too wide a "stance” in a
Minneapolis airport restroom stall and an undercover police officer
arrested him for homosexual solicitation.
But what about today’s Democrats? Who and what are they?
Sen. Joe Biden, the current vice president-elect, plagiarized a law
review article while a student at Syracuse University. Then, in 1988, he
plagiarized part of a speech by British Labor Party leader, Neil
Kinnock, an episode that drove him from the Democratic presidential
Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV), the current President Pro-Tem of the Senate, is
a former Grand Kleagle (recruiter) for the West Virginia Ku Klux Klan.
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) compared the treatment of detainees at
Guantanamo Bay by U.S. troops to the treatment of prisoners of the
Nazis, the Soviet gulags, and Cambodia's Pol Pot.
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY), a native of Illinois and a longtime
resident of Arkansas, moved to New York and won a U.S. Senate seat as a
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) resigned as chairman of the Senate’s
Military Construction Subcommittee after it was learned that she had
steered more than $1 billion in defense contracts to companies owned or
controlled by her husband.
Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA) drove a car off a tidelands bridge on
Massachusetts’ Chappaquiddick Island, leaving his young female
companion, Mary Jo Kopechne, to die. He later used his family’s
influence to plead guilty to a reduced charge of "leaving the scene of
Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) refuses to release 100 pages of his military
records, giving credence to the suspicion that he received a
dishonorable discharge from the U.S. Navy in 1971 or 1972.
Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) was seated illegally in the Senate in
January 2003. His corrupt predecessor, Robert Torricelli, was given "the
hook” by New Jersey Democrats 36 days before the 2002 General Election
when it appeared that he would lose to his Republican opponent. New
Jersey law stipulates that a candidate may not withdraw any later than
51 days prior to an election, but the Democrat-dominated New Jersey
Supreme Court ignored the law and allowed Democrats to make an
eleventh-hour substitution: Lautenberg for Torricelli.
Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) is the subject of an ongoing
investigation into a shady land deal at Bullhead City, AZ. Prior to
pushing through an appropriation for the construction of a new highway
bridge, Reid purchased a 160-acre tract of land nearby. With the
construction of the bridge, the value of Reid’s land is expected to
increase from $10,000 to $290,000.
In Minnesota, failed Air America talk show host, Al Franken, is
attempting to steal the Senate seat of incumbent Republican Norm
Coleman. In the wake of a slim Coleman victory on November 4, Minnesota
Democrats have continued to "find” previously uncounted ballots. They
have failed to "find” any misplaced Coleman votes and it appears they
will continue to "find” additional Franken votes until he has
accumulated enough votes to declare himself the victor.
But the true nature of the Democratic Party is most evident in the way
in which they approach the task of filling the Senate seats vacated by
President-elect Barack Obama, Vice-President-elect Joe Biden, and
Secretary of State-designate Hillary Clinton.
In Illinois, Democratic Governor Rod Blagojevich has been arrested by
FBI agents and charged with attempting to sell Obama’s Senate seat to
the highest bidder. However, as the beleaguered governor attempts to
fulfill his statutory responsibility to appoint a replacement, party
leaders in Washington and elsewhere wrestle with the problem of how to
deal with Blagojevich’s choice: former Illinois Attorney General Roland
As Democrats posture before the TV cameras, trying to make it appear as
if they are genuinely shocked and outraged by Blagojevich’s behavior,
they have announced that any replacement appointed by the governor would
be "tainted” and that they will not seat that senator. So the question
arises, when Burris shows up in the Senate to be sworn in, how will they
justify their refusal to seat him... given that: a) he is black, b) he
is eligible to serve, and c) he has been properly and legally appointed
by the governor of his state?
The Democrats’ dilemma is further complicated by confirmation from the
governor’s office that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid telephoned
Blagojevich on December 3, suggesting that he not appoint Cong. Jesse
Jackson, Jr., Cong. Danny Davis, or Illinois Senate President Emil
Jones, all of whom are black... making it all but certain that Dingy
Harry is caught red-handed on the FBI wiretaps. According to the
Chicago Sun-Times, Reid recommended the appointment of either
Illinois Veterans Affairs Secretary Tammy Duckworth or Illinois Attorney
General Lisa Madigan, both white women.
In Delaware, Democrat Governor Ruth Minner has agreed to appoint Senator
Biden’s longtime Chief of Staff, Edward Kaufman, as his replacement...
with the understanding that he will resign in two years so that Biden’s
son, Beau, now serving in Iraq, can take his father’s Senate seat. Biden
appears unconcerned that he is adding blatant nepotism to his long
history of plagiarism.
And in New York, Democrat Governor David Paterson is under heavy
pressure from liberals to appoint former president John F. Kennedy’s
daughter, Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg... a woman with no apparent
experience or qualifications... to the seat being vacated by New York’s
carpetbagger senator, Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Aside from being great theater, it is nothing more than Democrats going
about the business of being Democrats. For them, politics is merely a
game in which they feel entitled to make up the rules as they go along.
Recall the Clinton trial proceedings of February 1999. In trying the
impeachment charges, in which House managers presented an airtight case
that Bill Clinton had knowingly and purposely committed perjury, engaged
in conspiracy, and obstructed justice, every one of the forty-five
Senate Democrats voted "not guilty,” in violation of their oath to do
"fair and impartial justice.” Thirty-five of those senators are still in
the Senate today.
world’s greatest deliberative body? Not quite. There is a terrible
stench emanating from the Democratic side of the aisle in the United
States Senate these days. It is the aroma of a once-great institution
rotting from the inside out.