Sunday, December 03, 2006

So why was Jane Harman passed over?

In this incredibly lazy front page report from today's Washington Post, Jonathan Weisman and Peter Slevin go into great detail telling us why Alcee Hastings was not tapped to chair the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, but give only the skimpiest of possibilities on why Jane Harman, who had been the ranking Democrat, was also snubbed.

The fight over the top spot on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence has exposed the kind of factional politics that bedeviled House Democrats before they were swept from control in 1994. Harman, a moderate, strong-on-defense "Blue Dog" Democrat, had angered liberals with her reluctance to challenge the Bush administration's use of intelligence.

The details about Hastings are interesting, but a matter of public record and letting your readership know that he was impeached by a vote of 413 to 3 in the House and subsequently convicted by the Senate and removed from the bench, is really all you need.

A much more interesting report would detail the reasons Jane Harman was overlooked. The reporters might have actually had to do some work for those answers, so I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt by calling them lazy. The real problem might be that they know the real reason and it wouldn't reflect very well on Nancy Pelosi.

As the ranking Democrat on the committee Jane Harman was privy to the details of the NSA wiretap program. She was also sworn to secrecy on those details. It appears that Nancy Pelosi is punishing Harman for doing her job and keeping her oath, so what kind of message does that send to the new members? National security isn't a partisan game and the Speaker-designate has just told the Democrats that will work for her to either make it a game, national security secrets be damned, or pay the price.

**Clarification** This front page Washington Post story is from Wednesday November 29. The story was collected then and my text is somewhat misleading as to the publication date.

Comments:
RW: I've only seen Jane Harmon interviewed a couple of times, but I was impressed with what I saw. Very professional and respectful of her duties as well as the duties of her "esteemed" (left-side cough) colleagues from both sides of the aisle.

I remember thinking..."I'll bet that lady is wears jockey shorts."

I haven't read the Washington Post piece. I'm doing it now....
 
Oops! The word "is" has no meaning in ^^^ that context. Omit.
 
O.K., three posts in a row. I'm hogging the board. I just got through reading WaPo. Hastings, a Clinton impeachment repeat.

I guess you can successfully blind a lot of folks with smoke from a cigar.
 
@@,

It doesn't really count as three if one is a correction.

She does always seem very professional and if I'm right that she was torpedoed for keeping a sworn secret a secret then the next two years are going to be an eye opener.
 
RW,

I wondered how Pelosi was going to keep Harmon from the job for which she was next in line. But it was easy!!! Just skip over Jane and act like she wasn't there. Does the guy Pelosi chose have any experience? Is he from Miami?
 
RW,

Why didn't Hastings mention Karl Rove and Halliburton?

Hastings himself suggested that a decision against him would be a victory for "Newt Gingrich, Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, Michael Barone, Drudge, anonymous bloggers, and other assorted misinformed fools."

You may be right that Pelosi wants Harman out over her zipped lip with NSA intelligence, or it could be that Pelosi needs a particular constituency on her side -

Some Democrats say Pelosi's choice for intelligence chair is less about personal conflict than fixing a political problem, which ironically began with Harman's return to the House in 2001.

After Harman lost her gubernatorial bid, Pelosi urged her to run for Congress again. Harman's choice was made easier by the fact that then-Minority Leader Dick Gephardt (D-Mo.) had promised her in writing that she could reclaim her seniority on the Intelligence Committee. That bumped a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, Rep. Sanford D. Bishop Jr. (D-Ga.), off the committee and jumped her over another African American, Rep. Alcee L. Hastings (D-Fla.), in seniority.

Black members of Congress were upset by what they saw as a slap by House Democratic leaders. Last year the black caucus asked for a meeting, and according to one witness, Pelosi promised not to slight either blacks or Latinos when plum slots came up on the Intelligence and Homeland Security committees.

 
Dusty,

I think the guy she settled on is from Texas, although the WaPo says she hasn't decided. I could have sworn I saw a story saying she had.

Buy Danish,

It's probably not an either/or scenario. It's probably a little of both, but it's a safe bet that she doesn't want it out that she was upset with Harman for not leaking a lot more than she cares if the speculation of appeasing the Black and Latino caucuses.
 
RW,

I thought she chose the guy with the Spanish sounding surname.

I think we should court Jane Harman and get her to change aisles.
 
Buy Danish,

She picked Silvestre Reyes from Texas.
 
RW:

Has Harmon always held this opinion or this something new?
 
"The president should seek legal consensus on these questions. ... If we don't craft good policy now, I shudder to think what we will do after another attack."

@@,

Nevermind about courting her to cross the aisle - she is too busy selling her soul to the Devil. This is uneffingbelievable - and this is from one of the conservative-ish "Blue Dogs".

She's not concerned about what happens to US after we are attacked by THEM. She's worried about whether or not we molly-coddle them enough if and when we catch them - which we would leave to dumb luck.

I have an idea. Let's just hire a bunch of lawyers to represent them from places like Saudi Arabia and Pakistan or maybe even the burbs of London or Paris and we'll let them decide how we should defend ourselves and prosecute these scum who have no hearts and minds to win.
 
@@,

Well I wasn't going to be quite as harsh as Buy Danish because some of it sounds like just pandering to the audience and sucking up a little to the new leadership.

What does bother me is the notion that she now thinks the NSA wiretap program was illegal and that President Bush is operating on the thinnest of legal basis. She used to say the program was a very good and vital program and essential to our national security.

If this is truly the way we are going to fight these Islamic goons now we may as well get the office space and staff for the next 9/11 commission.
 
RW,

Exactly. Instead of white flags, the new symbol of surrender can be a burka hoisted on a stick.

Jane Harman is proving my thesis that there is virtually no such thing as a "moderate Democrat". At best they are opportunists who side with us, not because they believe in a cause or a method, but because they think it is the route to power.

If there are no moderate Democrats, how can we rely on "moderate Muslims"?

How do we win their vile hearts and minds, particularly when people like Jane Harman habitually depict our country's policies of self-defense as inhumane?

Perhaps I am particularly piqued at her comments as I am reading a chapter in America Alone where Mark Steyn reminds us that they do not share a common sense of humanity. He does not point to what goes on in the caves of Afghanistan, but to Palestinian parliamentarians belonging to the (H) Hamas Party who are elected after sending their own children off as suicide bombers. And to the "youth" of Britain who use our technology to download videos of be-headings to their cell phones. Not to mention those who would massacre at Beslan.

We cannot win this war exclusively through military means, but we cannot win it by self-flagellation either.
 
RW,

John Bolton has just announced that he will withdraw his name.

How about Cindy Sheehan as his replacement?
 
Buy Danish,


It also doesn't help when we finally get someone effective in the UN and now President Bush has caved and is accepting his resignation.

Sure there are moderate Democrats. John McCain, Chuck, Hagle, and Richard Lugar come to mind.
 
BD,

Should we start the "Send Mama Moonbat to the UN" drive here or promote it over at the AJC?

I just looked in and I guess we see what things will be like without Andy. Polly and his recycled Star Bar act act Queen AntiR of Yahoo.

@@ waded into the cesspool, I hope she got out alright.
 
RW,

Right again.

What will it take to make these fools who stayed home and did't vote, or pulled the lever for Democrats out of spite, to realize the error of their ways and get them back on track in 2008?

I think Jane Harman should be used as the first volley - an example of how they cannot be trusted, how even the most "strong on national security" and "moderate" among them will capitulate to evil.
 
RW,

I'm staying away from MLs for awhile. I'm not in the mood to argue with pre-schoolers wearing suicide bombs.

But if you have the fortitude, please go for it!
 
RW,


<Am I having a bad dream?
 
Buy Danish,

My first inclination is to stay away from there for the most part anyway, but there's really no reason to comment when it's just those two spammers there.

I quit updating After Dark and I think I'm going to let that one die on the vine.
 
BD,

That immigration bill may be the best news we have right now. It will certainly galvanize the right and it will really put the screws to the newly elected Democrats from conservative areas.
 
RW,

MLs blog may die on the vine too.
 
It may! I'm running out for a while.
 
RW,

I certainly hope you're right about the immigration bill, but the MSM is not going to be on our side.

What about the illegal alien Islamists? I can just hear the demands that they be given citizenship too.

How do you give amnesty to one group and not be fair to everyone?
Isn't that discriminatory?
 


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