10 Phony Scandals the GOP May Waste Your Tax Dollars Investigating
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Last year, both grabbed hold of a story of a Tea Partier who was allegedly assaulted by a member of SEIU outside a Missouri town-hall meeting. The reality, according to the Wichita Daily Eagle, is that there was a scuffle, captured on “grainy and poorly lit” video. Both sides claimed they’d been assaulted by the other party and according to the available evidence, it was “inconclusive as to what exactly happened.”
In Glenn Beck’s alternative universe, however, the fact that SEIU wasn’t prosecuted for the shoving match somehow became a dark conspiracy on the part of local Democratic officials, urged on by the Obama administration at the behest of SEIU’s thuggish leadership.
5. Paranoid Tales of Voter Fraud
What ties ACORN, SEIU and the New Black Panthers together? In the conservative fever swamps, all are part of a well-orchestrated leftist plot to disenfranchise “Real” (read “white”) Americans and steal elections in this supposedly “center-Right” nation.
As I wrote in October, “Every serious analysis has concluded that voter fraud is a non-issue, a charge fabricated on the back of a very small number of legitimate cases.” It’s not a new charge, and George W. Bush’s Justice Department made sniffing out “voter fraud” a top priority. What did they find? According to Columbia University scholar Lorraine Minnite, author of The Myth of Voter Fraud , they could prove just 26 cases in the entire United States between 2002 and 2005.
Out of hundreds of millions of votes cast over two election cycles, the total included five people who could not vote because they’d been convicted of felonies, 14 non-citizens, and five people who voted twice in the same election.
Again, a non-issue. Nevertheless, we can expect a Congressional probe into the weighty question of whether our elections are being stolen by illegal Mexicans, or dead people, or dead, illegal Mexican people.
6. White House Job Offers
The Right has actually dubbed this one “ Job-Gate,” and it may be the greatest non-story ever told.
Brace yourself, because this may come as a shock: political parties try to win elections. Also, when you become president of the United States, you tend to gain some influence within your party.
When the White House made the calculation, right or wrong, that two incumbent Democrats would be better prepared to win in the general election than their primary challengers — Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania and Andrew Romanoff in Colorado — they offered the two men high-level appointments to drop out of their respective races.
This is not uncommon, and legal experts all agree that as an intra-party matter it was all completely legal. But the Right called it bribery, and in May, Darrell Issa told The Hill that the affair “could be President Barack Obama's Watergate scandal.”
Although you may have missed it, the so-called Climategate scandal that supposedly uncovered climatologists fixing their data to support the theory of man-made global warming has been thoroughly debunked. But the idea that anthropogenic climate change is a fraud -- an elaborate socialist plot perpetrated by tens of thousands of scientists working in thousands of research units in dozens of countries -- is one of the most enduring conspiracy theories in America, at least among American conservatives.
Three independent panels have reviewed the evidence and exonerated the scientists of wrongdoing, but as Chris Mooney reports, “Several top House Republicans have indicated that they may want to hold ‘Climategate’ hearings (although more recently, there has been some apparent backing away from this idea).”