Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Joseph Welch Award Goes To…

Joseph Welch was the attorney during the Army-McCarthy hearings in 1954 who delivered the famous line, “Have you no sense of decency? At long last, sir, have you left no sense of decency?” to Sen. Joe McCarthy. That brought an end to the hearings and pretty much torpedoed the career of the paranoid freaky witch-hunting junior Republican senator from Wisconsin.

Earlier this week, Attorney General Eric Holder was on Capitol Hill for the ninth time answering questions about “Fast and Furious,” the botched sting operation supplying guns to Mexican drug dealers that was started by the Bush administration in 2006. When Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) demanded that Mr. Holder resign, Mr. Holder came back with a reply that makes him this week’s winner of the epic smack-down award:

With all due respect, senator, there is so much that is factually wrong with the premises that you started your statement with, it’s almost breathtaking in its inaccuracy, but, I’ll simply leave it at that.

You know, we want to talk about Fast and Furious, this is, I guess, what, the ninth time?— [turning to an aide who nods “yes”]—this is now the ninth time that I have answered questions before a congressional committee about “Fast and Furious.”

If you want to talk about Fast and Furious, I’m the attorney general that put an end to the misguided tactics that were used in Fast and Furious. An attorney general whom I suppose you would hold in higher regard was briefed on these kinds of tactics in an operation called “Wide Receiver” and did nothing to stop them. Nothing. Three hundred guns, at least, “walked” in that instance.

I’m also the attorney general who called on an inspector general to look into this matter, to investigate this matter. I’m also the attorney general who made personnel changes at ATF and in the U.S. Attorneys office that was involved, have overseen the changes of processes and procedures within ATF to make sure that this doesn’t happen ever again.

So I don’t have any intention of resigning.

And he was just getting warmed up. Read the rest of it.

Of course, Mr. Cornyn is an easy target, but still, it’s really nice to see someone take the shit back to someone who so richly deserves it.