It takes a lot for an article about Michele Bachmann to get under my skin these days – there are few taboos that she has not broken, and few lines that she has not crossed – but this one from Politico managed to do the job:
In a June 13 letter, five GOP congressmen – Reps. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, Trent Franks of Arizona, Louie Gohmert of Texas, Tom Rooney of Florida and Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia – called on the State Department’s deputy inspector general to investigate whether Abedin and other department officials were trying to influence U.S. foreign policy to aid the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamist causes. The congressmen cited a report by the far-right think tank Center for Security Policy.
The report alleges Abedin has three family members — her late father, her mother and her brother — who are connected to Muslim Brotherhood operatives or organizations.
“The State Department and, in several cases, the specific direction of the Secretary of State, have taken actions recently that have been enormously favorable to the Muslim Brotherhood and its interests,” the five House Republicans wrote Harold G. Geisel, the acting inspector general.
It seems that the congresswoman from Minnesota’s 6th congressional district – Minnesota Palin – has decided to pick up where McCarthy left off, and start a witch-hunt against Muslim Americans working for the US government. In this case, the target was Huma Abedin, a senior aide to Hillary Clinton in the State Department.
The unfounded allegations of ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, and of harbouring anti-American ideals and seeking to use her position to promote pro-Islamist policies within the US government, proved too much even for John McCain, who chastised Bachmann in a Senate floor speech:
“I know Huma to be an intelligent, upstanding, hard-working, and loyal servant of our country and our government, who has devoted countless days of her life to advancing the ideals of the nation she loves and looking after its most precious interests,” McCain, the GOP’s 2008 presidential nominee and a leading voice on defense and foreign policy, said in his floor speech.
“Put simply, Huma represents what is best about America: the daughter of immigrants, who has risen to the highest levels of our government on the basis of her substantial personal merit and her abiding commitment to the American ideals that she embodies so fully,” McCain added.
McCain’s political integrity ebbs and flows much like the tide, but I think we can all be grateful that it was working on this occasion at least.
And shame on Michele Bachmann and her fellow Republican joint signatories of this letter.
The fear that grips so much of today’s Republican Party – fear of cultural change, fear of terrorism and “the homeland” no longer being an impregnable fortress, fear of people who look or behave differently to a black-and-white 1950s television show – leads to the type of controlling, paternalistic, paranoid behaviour that drives so many people, myself included, away from supporting them.
Which is a real shame, because there are some solid, proven, and much-needed conservative policy solutions to many of America’s problems being buried by the GOP under big piles of precisely this type of nonsense.