In a new Time column, Joe Klein says that Republican impeachment calls are the result of "feral vehemence" -- yet he devotes the entire column to chastising Democrats for mentioning the impeachment push in fundraising and campaigning, and he reserves most of his ire for the guy who's the target of the "feral vehemence":
So, this is smart strategy on the part of the Obama political operation, right? Well, grudgingly, yes. But it’s also cynical as hell. The White House is playing with fire, raising the heat in a country that is already brain-fried by partisan frenzy. There is something unseemly, and unprecedented, about an administration saying "Bring it on" when it comes to impeachment.Oh, I see -- Republicans have had their enraged mobs out in the streets since January 20, 2009, but when Obama responds, he's the bad guy.
In fact, what Obama's doing is responding to a threatened beatdown in a deserted back alley by shouting, "You want to beat the shit out of me? Go ahead, tough guys!" -- in the expectation that if he yells loud enough, he'll wake some of the neighbors (in this case, Democratic voters who usually ignore midterm elections), and the goon squad won't proceed with impunity.
But no -- to Klein, Obama and the Democrats are the real villains here. Asking the GOP to fully suppress its "feral vehemence" would be too much. Yes, John Boehner opposes impeachment, but, as Klein acknowledges, he may not be able to stop an impeachment drive. I guess that's just the natural order of things, and it would be silly for Klein to write a column chastising Boehner and his troops. Only Obama is "playing with fire." Never mind who lit the match.
Back in 2007, when some Democrats were the ones calling for impeachment, Klein wrote a column denouncing George W. Bush as "clearly unfit to lead." That was good as far as it went, but when some readers interpreted the column as an impeachment call, Klein wrote this in a follow-up:
NO! I am not hinting at impeachment. There are no "high crimes" here. Just a really bad presidency. In fact, I consider impeachment talk counterproductive and slightly nutso.Then it was the would-be impeachers who were "nutso." They were a problem. They were Democrats, of course.
Right around the same time, there was this blog post from Klein, in reference to Hillary Clinton's seemingly inevitable march to the presidency:
Can Pre-Impeachment Be Far Behind?Way to blame the victim, Joe. To you, the sociopaths who prey on her are her baggage.
Dana Milbank writes about a gathering of anti-Hillary wingnuts in DC, and I'm ashamed by my reaction -- which isn't so much, Jeez these people are mortally dreadful, but more like: Jeez, if Hillary wins, are we going to have all these zombies in our faces yet again? They represent a moment in time -- the '90s -- that I'm not yet nostalgic for, and probably never will be.
Yes, it's unfair to Hillary. But when people talk about Clinton baggage, it's not just Monica, it's also the whole fetid, over-the-top gang of anti-Clinton obsessives who come to mind. A real problem for her, I'd guess.
By the way, Joe, please note that Hillary didn't win, yet the impeachment crazies are running rampant anyway. I guess it wasn't all the Clintons' fault. Hey, maybe it's the fault of their enemies, who are also Obama's enemies! Maybe they've been "playing with fire" since the '90s! How's that for a theory?
Nahh, that can't be -- they're Republicans. Right? Isn't that what you think, Joe, deep down?
(Cross-posted at Crooks and Liars.)