|Senator John McCain, (R - AZ)|
Photo: Johannes Simon / Getty
When anyone, not least a member of Congress, launches specious and degrading attacks against fellow Americans on the basis of nothing more than fear of who they are and ignorance of what they stand for, it defames the spirit of our nation, and we all grow poorer because of it."
- From Senator John McCain, in his eloquent defense of Huma Abedin, Sec. of State Clinton's Deputy Chief of Staff, who faces unsupported allegations that she used her position to exert a pro-Islamist influence over American foreign policy.
In remarks he made on the floor of the U.S. Senate, McCain completely dismissed a letter composed by Minnesota Representative Michele Bachmann and four other Congressmen, in which the lawmakers questioned Abedin's loyalty and alleged she has ties to the Muslim Brotherhood organization.
McCain's speech, which you can view a clip of on Politico, is refreshing on two levels.
First, it's encouraging (and rare, these days) to see any member of either major political party step forward in defense of someone on the other side of the aisle. It feels professional, honest, and grown-up, traits that are conspicuously underrepresented in contemporary American politics.
Second, and more importantly, it's inspiring to see a respected GOP figure publicly challenge ultra-conservative politicians to rise above their prejudice and small-mindedness, and do so in support of fundamental American values. John McCain delivered a sledgehammer reminder to Michele Bachmann and her gang of bullies that accusing someone of being "un-American," when you have no substantiating evidence, is a very un-American thing to do.
I really miss the original John McCain, the politician who ran against George W. Bush in 2000 and who was a bonafide independent-thinking "maverick," long before Sarah Palin ruined that term for all of us.
After having to practically sell his soul in his 2008 bid for the presidency, it's nice to see the return of the real John McCain.