Partisan Abuse of Power

00:15 Thu 29 Mar 2007. Updated: 09:49 30 Mar 2007
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A classic example of trying to deny the obvious can be found in this clip on the allegations of partisan misuse of government resources. The woman being interviewed is the head of the General Services Administration, which is supposed to deal with logistical support like supplying the government and finding/managing office space—and which, as a publicly-funded agency, is prohibited from using its funds, facilities, or employee time for partisan purposes.

This grilling is part of a trend of the Democratic party, now that they have control of the House, investigating Republican misconduct. This is clearly a very necessary thing. It’s good to see, and it’s great to have political hacks like this exposed as either misusing government resources for their own purposes, or as terrible liars, or as utterly, entirely, incompetent.

Near the end, around 08:30, she is forced to go into complete “I don’t remember” mode, which is a favored out when one is under oath and unwilling to lie but unwilling to admit to what you said/did in the past…

This clip has more of the same…

While it’s good to see that these investigations are going on, Radly Balko on Reason Online points out that there are worse abuses, and that it’s sad that the Democrats are so mobilized partly because they’re outraged by the partisanship involved in these acts—rather than, say, the suspension of habeas corpus, the various illegal-syping-on-citizens schemes, and so on.

Still, the oversight is a much-needed break from what we had before, and perhaps it’s not too much to hope that some of it will stick, and that beyond removing policies that hurt the Democratic Party directly, some Democrats will persist in applying some sunshine and accountability throughout their terms.

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