WASHINGTON — As Senator Christopher J. Dodd completed what might be the capstone of his legislative career last week by shepherding a major banking overhaul through the Senate, the guest book in his office offered a glimpse of why he is not seeking re-election. It includes these recent greetings from visitors who stopped by to pay their disrespects:Of course, if you read a few more paragraphs into the story by Mark Leibovich (who has done better work), you find that the Senate Ethics Committee cleared Dodd of any wrongdoing.
“Good bye and good riddance to you,” wrote one guest on May 16. “I know it’s tough, but I expected better,” said another (April 15). “Thank you for being corrupt” (March 26).
I suppose it would have been too much trouble to note that immediately after the quote about Dodd being “corrupt” in the matter of a supposed sweetheart deal on a mortgage with Countrywide, as well as questions about another property, since it would have deprived the Murdoch Street Journal, among others, of a crucial anti-Dodd talking point. And while I wish Dodd had spoken up much, much earlier on the matter, maybe he thought it was unwise since he was still under investigation.
And how’s this for using hearsay to advocate a preconceived talking point…
Late last year, while Mr. Dodd was still a candidate for re-election, critics accused him of writing an extreme populist (financial oversight) bill in an effort to placate liberal primary voters. Some Obama administration officials grumbled that he was more committed to rehabilitating himself politically than finding a practical solution legislatively. As the public mood moved against Wall Street and in favor of a tougher bill, some on the left accused Mr. Dodd of trying to cut too many deals with Republicans.Uh, memo to Clark Hoyt – I thought your paper had standards about anonymous sourcing.
Is it time for Chris Dodd to “turn over the reins” to his successor, who hopefully will be Richard Blumenthal (and Leibovich sticks a reference to the Blumenthal business in the story which really has not a damn thing to do with Dodd)? Probably.
But as I’ve said before (here and here), Dodd has been a friend. And he’s been a good legislator. So he screwed up by trying to run for president when he probably shouldn’t have. Since when is that an offense that earns expulsion from office?
Dodd is exactly the type of person we need in government service. And with his departure along with that of Byron Dorgan and Ted Kaufman, the Dems, and our country really, are very much the weaker for it (Evan Bayh, not so much).
I guess Corker would be a subject matter expert in that department, since he put a “hold” (and why is that still allowed?) on a bill funding the FAA in order to keep Fed Ex workers from unionizing here, even though the language was in the House bill and not the Senate bill (Corker wanted to prevent the language he didn’t like from being added during the Senate-House conference on the bill…guess he was using FAA workers as “props,” to say nothing of Fed Ex employees).
Also, I suppose David Shuster was a “prop,” though I’m sure an unwilling one, when Corker concocted this lie about the ad appearing below (and I suppose Canada and France were “props” for Corker when he crafted this piece of fiction here.
Of course, if that happened, there’d be no way to make the feature film, which I’m sure will be forthcoming (and I’m sure show producer and right-wing flamer Marc Surnow will have even more time to work on his fictitious trash Kennedy biopic for The History Channel, which you can learn about in the following clip).