Judd Gregg: Men need to shut up?

Judd Gregg: Men need to shut up?
© Greg Nash

Sen. Mazie HironoMazie Keiko HironoRubio: ‘I don’t know’ if Nauert has 'detailed knowledge' to succeed as UN ambassador Overnight Defense: Nauert tapped for UN envoy | Trump teases changes to Joint Chiefs of Staff | Trump knocks Tillerson as 'dumb as a rock' | Scathing report details Air Force failures before Texas shooting Dem senator slams Nauert's lack of 'qualifications' for UN ambassador MORE (D-Hawaii) stated recently, amid the confirmation hearings for Brett Kavanaugh, that men should “shut up.”

This bit of combative language was met with an enthusiastic response from her female colleagues among Senate Democrats.

Among the activist-left commentator community — otherwise known as NPR, MSNBC and the New York Times — Hirono’s call for silence has also been met with great relish and has raised her to folk-hero status.

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She is now enshrined in the liberal hall of fame for this soundbite.

But what did the good senator mean?

Did she mean that Sen. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyThe Year Ahead: Tough tests loom for Trump trade agenda Senate heads toward floor fight on criminal justice bill Top security officials issue stark warning of Chinese espionage efforts MORE (R-Iowa), chairman of the Judiciary Committee, should “shut up”?

This approach has already been tried by her colleague, Sen. Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisBiden team discussed 2020 run with O'Rourke as VP: report Pollster says likely Dem 2020 nominee has not emerged in national conversation yet O'Rourke doubles support in CNN poll of Dem presidential race MORE (D-Calif.), who tried to shout down the chairman during Grassley’s opening statement at the start of the Kavanaugh hearings.

He quietly listened to the California senator’s tirade and then proceeded to finish his opening statement.

It is difficult to believe that Hirono’s directive was directed at Grassley. He is from Iowa, after all. He is understated and, like most farmers, very circumspect in his use of language. She could hardly be asking someone of so few words to say even fewer.

Maybe her comments were directed at Sen. John CornynJohn CornynKevin McLaughlin tapped to serve as NRSC executive director for 2020 On The Money: Trump leaves GOP in turmoil with shutdown looming | Trump names Mulvaney acting chief of staff | China agrees to 3-month freeze of auto tariffs | Dem to seek Deutsche Bank records of Trump's personal finances The Hill's Morning Report — Trump maintains his innocence amid mounting controversies MORE (R-Texas)? He is the number two senator in the Republican leadership and a senior member of the Judiciary Committee.

But Cornyn is a former Supreme Court Justice on the State of Texas’s Supreme Court. He is even less loquacious than Grassley and more temperate in his demeanor and language.

Surely Hirono could not have been entreating Cornyn to “shut up”?

Hirono may have been addressing her counsel to Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamOcasio-Cortez: By Lindsey Graham's 1999 standard for Clinton, Trump should be impeached Senate votes to end US support for Saudi war, bucking Trump Former FBI official says Mueller won’t be ‘colored by politics’ in Russia probe MORE (R-S.C.).

He also is a prominent member of the Judiciary Committee.

Graham is admittedly more talkative then his Iowan and Texan colleagues.

But Graham’s comments are mostly thoughtful reflections delivered with an entertaining humor. It is difficult to believe that Hirono’s purpose was to silence a voice that breaks through the tedium of Senate debate.

No, Hirono could not be calling on Graham to “shut up.”

Whom, then, was Hirono speaking to when she said it was time for men to “shut up”?

One can only conclude she was referring to all men.

This is probably why she was instantly elevated to such high status by her admirers in the circle of female Democratic senators and beyond it, in the liberal commentariat.

She was calling on American males to be silent.

It is true that men are often taciturn, and so asking them to “shut up” might not be that great a sacrifice.

However, such a directive still comes as a disconcerting request.

There are approximately 700,000 men in Hawaii.

Many of them do considerable service.

Some are stationed at Pearl Harbor with the purpose of defending the island and our nation. Others are policemen, firemen, teachers, union members — or surfers, of course. They probably like to talk about University of Hawaii football games or whether the surf is up.

One suspects they also have opinions on politics and on things like who should be serving on the Supreme Court.

It is hard to tell 700,000 of your constituents to “shut up." But this appears to be what the senator is telling them to do. Such an approach hardly seems a qualification for folk-hero status.

The feminist left may have their new hero in Hirono. But the political left may want to consider the consequences of calling for shutting up half the people in America.

The purpose of political correctness as practiced by the left has been to silence, especially on college campuses, those who might disagree with their views or their march to a new socialist state.

But even the zealousness of these campus elites pales compared to the call to arms from Hirono.

Hirono and her colleagues can parade forward under their new banner proclaiming that men should “shut up.”

Those watching the parade, whether men or women, will likely turn the other way and keep talking to each other — about, among other things, the inanity of some of the people we send to Washington.

Judd Gregg (R) is a former governor and three-term senator from New Hampshire who served as chairman and ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee, and as ranking member of the Senate Appropriations Foreign Operations subcommittee.