Remember back in the olden days when Republicans were consistently willing to set aside petty partisanship and perpetual grievance in order to ensure that only the most qualified individuals were given top government posts?
Yeah, me neither.
Before we get to the current minority party obstruction, let’s all hop in the Wayback Machine to 2017, when Donald Trump was filling his swamp with alligators—some of whom were blessed with walnut-sized reptile brains and some of whom could only aspire to such rarefied intellectual heights.
In the closest confirmation vote ever, the Republican-controlled Senate rubber-stamped Trump’s choice for education secretary, Betsy DeVos, even though she knew demonstrably less about rudimentary education policy than about random grizzly bear attacks.
DeVos’ real qualification for becoming a top administration adviser, of course, was that she’d donated a shite-tonne of money to Republicans. Absent that largesse, she’d have been hard-pressed to find a job dumping grainy pink puke powder on second graders’ vomit.
But, hey, Republicans’ very existence depends on shoving stuff down the public’s memory hole faster than Donald John Trump can hoover up his nightly tub of pork rinds and snackin’ lard. Insurrection? Meh. What about Benghazi? Wait, you still want to talk about that GOP-incited insurrection? What about Fast and Furious?
And so on.
So Republicans were surely hoping you’d forget about Education Secretary Betsy DeVos when they decided to sign on to a letter opposing the confirmation of Xavier Becerra, Joe Biden’s pick for Health and Human Services secretary, over a lack of “meaningful experience.” No, really, that’s what they wrote.
The senators, led by Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), urged Biden in a letter to withdraw the nomination of Xavier Becerra, California’s attorney general, arguing he is unqualified to lead the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
The senators wrote that Becerra has “no meaningful experience in health care, public health, large-scale logistics, or any other areas critical to meeting our present challenges.”
Okay, then. That’s pretty rich.
Of course, nine of the 11 senators who signed onto the letter voted to confirm DeVos. The other two, Marsha Blackburn and Bill Hagerty, were not yet in the Senate. Those who were—Tom Cotton, Ted Cruz, Steve Daines, James Lankford, Mike Lee, James Risch, Mike Rounds, Roger Wicker, and John Kennedy—have apparently lost all sense of shame.
But what of the substance of these senators’ claim? Well, for his part, Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden says “there’s really no there there.” Unless, of course, you look beyond the bullshit.
Republicans point to Becerra’s support for abortion rights and Medicare for All as proof he is too “radical” for the job.
I swear, the only thing anyone ever learned from DeVos was not to stare directly into her eyes lest their soul become trapped inside a cursed monkey’s paw. But Republicans let her right past the gates as if she were nothing more than a violent pro-Trump insurrectionist or something.
But, hey, wringing your hands about rank hypocrisy is for the little people.
If only we could all be as wise and discerning as Ted Cruz.
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