Who's Not Wild about Harry?
Muzzling Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) for calling Americans “domestic terrorists” is the last thing Republicans fighting for control of the Senate in November should want.
Reid railed at the Americans standing with Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy after about 200 heavily-armed federal agents arrived to seize his cattle for nonpayment of grazing fees on federal land.
An American-owned herd of cattle eating grass and fertilizing public land is treated as a threat to national security. Yet, trespassing foreigners, from who knows where, are welcomed “out of the shadows” and granted many of the benefits of U.S. citizenship with Reid’s approval.
Whether Bundy has any legal or constitutional right to resist enforcement of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s claims against him isn’t the issue. Americans are incensed at the government’s disparate show of force in response to Bundy’s minor civil offense.
Did anyone hear Reid object when the Obama administration classified the murder of American soldiers at Ft. Hood by the jihadist, Nadal Hasan, as “workplace violence?”
Denigrating Americans as “domestic terrorists”should be the last in Reid’s long history of abusing his Senate position by making nasty, ignorant, false and defamatory statements without suffering any political consequences:
- Reid told a high school civics class in 2005 his opinion of then-President George W. Bush, “I think this guy is a loser.”
- Reid snidely attacked the character and reputation of Judge Henry Saad, a nominee to the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals. I wrote about it for Human Events in 2006. While on the Senate floor, Reid implied that there was something damaging in Saad’s FBI file. Saad had been through four FBI background checks after being nominated twice each by Presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush. Surely, if there had been a problem, neither White House would have sent the nomination on to the Senate. Reid’s comment was an obvious attempt to smear an Arab-American in a post 9-11 environment.
- Reid declared in April 2007, that “the war in Iraq war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything.” The surge’s success was widely accepted afterward.
- Reid used the dedication of the new U.S. Capitol Visitor’s Center to tell us that he doesn’t like the smell of Americans visiting the Capitol.
- Reid described then Senator Barack Obama in 2008, as electable because he’s “light-skinned with no Negro dialect unless he wanted to have one.”
- Reid stood on the Senate floor on August 12, 2012, and falsely claimed that Mitt Romney “has not paid any taxes for 10 years.”
- Reid implied on August 13, 2013, that racism is the basis for Republican opposition to President Obama’s policies:
“It's been obvious that they're doing everything they can to make him fail. And I hope, I hope -- and I say this seriously -- I hope that's based on substance and not the fact that he's African-American.”
- Reid has an entire web page devoted to attacking two highly successful Americans, Charles and David Koch, who employ 60,000 people. Could any Republican senator withstand the fallout for targeting a big Democrat donor?
- Reid insulted Hispanics while campaigning for re-election in 2010, saying:
“I don’t know how anyone of Hispanic heritage could be a Republican, OK? Do I need to say more?”
Reid must be confident that Hispanics aren’t aware of his 1994 op-ed in the Los Angeles Times, expressing less concern about “livestock grazing” and great concern about immigration and the
“burdens that millions of new people place every year on our water supplies, air quality, parks, lakes, recreation areas and public land.
“Most politicians agree that illegal immigration should end. My legislation would double border patrols and accelerate the deportation process for criminals and illegal entrants. But many lawmakers feel that lowering legal immigration is too dicey. This is a cop-out.
“Opponents of immigration reform cry racism or point toward our historic role as a nation of immigrants. Charges of racial bias are unfounded.”
But, unlike 1994,Reid is now willing to allow trespassing foreigners to just walk away from violating federal law with his blessing.
If Americans don’t end Reid’s shameful attacks on Americans and his tyrannical rule over the U.S. Senate this November, will it be an admission that we don’t deserve better?
Jan LaRue is a senior legal analyst with the American Civil Rights Union.