January 10th, 2017

The fight against Sessions

The confirmation hearings of Trump appointees—as the WSJ delicately puts it—are “likely to generate significant resistance from Democrats.” In Jeff Sessions’ case, some ancient accusations against him of being a racist have been trotted out, and he is denying them:

Mr. Sessions, a Republican from Alabama, said allegations that he is sympathetic to groups such as the Ku Klux Klan or is otherwise racially biased are “damnably false.” The issue of race has hovered over the selection of Mr. Sessions to be the nation’s top law-enforcement officer, in part because his 1986 nomination to be a federal judge was rejected amid racial concerns.

Mr. Sessions, like virtually all Mr. Trump’s nominees, is expected to be confirmed by the GOP-controlled Senate. But the hearings provide Democrats a platform to try to elicit commitments in various policy areas and to express their displeasure.

It’s all about the venting. “Failure theater,” indeed—but propaganda is not failure, even if Sessions is confirmed. Many people who probably never heard of Sessions before now believe him to be a racist (of course, many of those people also believe all Republicans are racists, but it’s still nice to have a graphic example now and then).

The charges? Ludicrous (as Sessions says):

Mr. Sessions, rather than waiting for pointed questions on the racial issue, took the initiative in his opening statement, saying that as a state prosecutor he had forcefully pushed the prosecution of KKK members accused of killing a young black man, successfully advocating the death penalty for one of them. The KKK has been an issue for Mr. Sessions because at his 1986 hearing, he was asked about allegations that he had told a black federal prosecutor in Alabama who had worked for him that the group “was O.K. until I found out they smoked pot.”

Mr. Sessions suggested at that 1986 hearing that his comment wasn’t meant to be taken seriously and that it was “ludicrous” to think he supported the group.

It’s come down to this as accusations of racism go. Surely there are many racists in the world, but Sessions is not one of them, and a joke is a joke—a thirty-plus-year-old joke.

Oh, and there were the obligatory KKK-garbed protestors at the hearing to add to the drama.

5 Responses to “The fight against Sessions”

  1. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    I listened briefly to a sampling of the hypocritical bombast coming out of the democrats at the Sessions hearing. In participating in the hypocrisy, they declare their unfitness for the office they hold. They now declare deplorable what they condoned and even welcomed in Holder and Lynch.

    Political cover for the beginning of what will prove to be a relentless campaign to invalidate Trump and his administration. Way past time to accept that they are Americans in name only.

  2. parker Says:

    The name of a democrat senator who was in the chamber for 50 years comes to mind: Robert Byrd. Byrd was a KKK recruiter and a chapter leader in WV. Upon his death in 2010 his democrat colleagues praised him as if he was a saint. Hypocrisy at its finest.

  3. M J R Says:

    neo writes, simply, “It’s all about the venting.” I’m willing to take it just a little further. I respectfully refer gentle reader to Saul Alinsky’s Rules For Radicals, as summarized by wikipedia: specifically, Rule 8; a tad less specifically, Rules 8 and 13:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rules_for_Radicals

    BEGIN RULE PASTES

    RULE 8 — “Keep the pressure on. Never let up.” Keep trying new things to keep the opposition off balance. As the opposition masters one approach, hit them from the flank with something new.
    RULE 13 — “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions.

    END RULE PASTES

  4. Sergey Says:

    Hopeless and petty drama. Democrats should recognize something I understood long ago: the most important Trump’s quality is his manifest destiny: he is unstoppable.

  5. The Other Chuck Says:

    A quip from Rush Limbaugh yesterday:

    The Democrats haven’t been this mad since Lincoln freed the slaves.

About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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