Don't Cross Jack
The blustering Dem -- Pelosi's pick for her go-to guy, as you recall -- is a bully whose rule of the playground is getting tiresome for everyone. I'd conclude that he's become an embarrassment to the Donkey Party, but I just don't know. Maybe they really like this guy as their representative.
The most recent incident, described in a WSJ editorial today, involved Murtha's cuffing of a couple Congressmen around the earmarks. (The Dems were going to reform earmarks, if you recall their 2006 campaign rhetoric.)
During negotiations over an intelligence bill last week, Mr. Murtha took exception to two colleagues who challenged an earmark for his district, so he let them know who's their daddy.What is it, NanPo? Is your team for earmark reform or not? You've told us Murtha's your guy, that he speaks for you, so what's the deal? Were the Dems just saying whatever it took to get elected or something?
The episode has backfired, however, as Republicans yesterday introduced a House resolution to reprimand Mr. Murtha for his bullying. Under an ethics rule passed by Democrats this year, House members are banned from blocking earmarks based on the way a Member votes. But what do they do now that one of their own is caught doing a Tom DeLay imitation?
The altercation went down as Mr. Murtha tried to adorn an intelligence bill with $23 million in funding for the National Drug Intelligence Center in the narcotics hotbed of Johnstown, Pennsylvania. Michigan Republican Mike Rogers questioned the earmark for a project that has been tagged even by the mainstream press as a "boondoggle" and the House Government Reform Committee called an "expensive and duplicative" use of scarce resources.But when Mr. Rogers proposed using that $23 million for other intelligence work, Mr. Murtha blew a gasket. "I hope you don't have any earmarks in the defense appropriations bills," Mr. Murtha told him, "because they are gone and you will not get any earmarks now and forever." Mr. Murtha administered a similar lashing to Republican Todd Tiahrt for his objection to the same $23 million. Cameras rolled as a crimson Mr. Murtha barreled up to Mr. Tiahrt to express his displeasure on the House floor, finger wagging.
Remember, folks, as you watch Murtha self-destruct before our eyes that this man, more than anyone else, is the architect of the Dems' attack on the war. Before Jack, they stewed. After Jack -- he's a Marine vet, did you know? -- they finally had a uniform to hide behind and became loud and shrill in their retraction of every pro-war vote and anti-Saddam statement they had made when it was chic to do so.
Was it a smart move? I don't know. Ask Jack. But ask him behind his back; it's dangerous challenging him to his face.
Art: United Conservatives