I am disgusted. Not in the way Mitt Romney is, but rather with people like Romney, who put image ahead of principle in certain times and places. We all screw up, but someone accused of public misconduct gets lonely real quick; one’s closest friends and supporters become curiously absent when they are needed most.
I don’t know, really, what happened in that airport bathroom. Neither do you, by the way. What I have read, however, sounds like a very, very weak case against Senator Craig, and if someone I knew and respected had been arrested on such a charge and said he did not do it, my first reaction would be public defense of the man, not a political excuse to trash him. The fact that he plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct suggests to me that the police realized that they could not make the charges stick as originally advertised. Yes, Craig plead guilty. But not to what we are hearing in the media, not to the strangely enthusiastic chorus of a political lynch mob.
The Democrats, hypocrites by rule, are going after Craig simply because he is Republican. Clinton was groping women for years while President, but they defended him. Barney Franks’ boyfriend once ran a brothel out of his Congressional office, but only two Democrats even wanted to censure Franks, and none wanted him canned. I could go on and on along those lines, but it’s common knowledge that Democrats will never turn on one of their own, while even a rumor against a Republican moves them to self-righteous fury.
The Republicans, however, might be even worse. From what I have read, Tom Delay committed no crime, but when the wolves went after him, his party and colleagues deserted him and he quit, as much in disgust as exhaustion. Alberto Gonzalez was completely in the right with regard to the U.S. Attorney firings, but few Republicans had the guts to say so, and so he quit as well. It seems that courage is in short supply among the GOP, especially the kind which directs a man to stand for his allies and victims of witch-hunts.