Political Roadkill

Harry Truman once said that if you need a friend in Washington, D.C., get a dog. Larry Craig must be off to the Humane Society’s shelter in Boise as we speak.

I was in the midst of working on my third campaign to unseat the man when all hell broke loose. (One reason for no blog posts last week!) My friend and longtime colleague, former Congressman Larry LaRocco, announced in April for Craig’s Senate seat.

I have to say that I have never seen the Republican leadership move so fast. Think of the legislation we could have passed if they moved this quickly when it comes to policy, not just politics: ethics and lobby reform, education reform, taking on global warming, getting out of Iraq — the list is endless.

This crowd of Republicans dropped the guillotine faster that you could say “Senate majority.” They wanted the “incident” over and behind them so badly they would do anything to get Craig off the front pages. They have so many scandals percolating, so many investigations of their tried and true, what they didn’t need was another Mark Foley.

You watch now. There will be no ethics investigation, there will be no examination of what Craig did or did not do. Despite the fact that Larry Craig has hired an army of lawyers to represent him, the Republicans will begin the process of “Larry who?” ... and move on. Craig wasn’t just thrown off the bus, he wasn’t just thrown under the bus, he was thrown in front of the bus. Political roadkill by the Republicans — the “moral values party.” Looking at the spin-offs from Jack Abramoff, the Bob Neys, the Duncan Hunters, the Rick Renzis, the Ted Stevenses, Jerry Lewis — the list goes on and on — scares the Republicans to death.

The highest number of partisan retirees lately was 17 in the House (’96) after the 1994 debacle for the Democrats. My guess is that Republicans may exceed this as many get sick and tired of being known as the “scandal party” and fear that it won’t be any time soon they will regain the majority.