The tone of some of the Republicans questioning Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the Seante on Benghazi today unofficially gave the hearing the title: “Bitter Partisan Questioning on Parade.” The highlight came when Clinton squelched Republican Sen. Ron Johnson when he attacked the Obama administration over its truthfulness on Benghazi, a favorite issue that Fox News, conservative talkers and conservative talk show hosts have been using in a way that goes way beyond trying to find out what occurred and how to fix it and into the area of crystal-clear partisan attack politics and posturing. Here’s the piece of video you’ll see over and over from the Senate hearing this morning:
Two other observations:
1. Once again those of us who were supporters of the 2000 version of John McCain saw a seemingly bitter, unadulterated partisan who was unrecognizable from the McCain once considered a maverick and an independent thinker. He is now as predictable on many issues as when you turn on Rush Limbaugh. McCain seems bitter not just about losing in 2008, but about life.
2. Sen. Rand Paul matched McCain in his partisan tone. In fact, Paul seemed to be clamoring to get a sound bite on Fox News (he will) and praise from Rush, Sean and Mark (he will) and praise from conservative bloggers. It seemed to be an announcement of a 2016 future Presidential run. Why? It was political name calling and sloganeering. Republicans will love it. Independents, centrists and moderates watching it will likely see Paul one more, ambitious partisan hack not using a hearing to seek solutions but to advance his name and support among the Republican base.