JE Tabler

Bayh and Axelrod’s Pathetic Defense of the Indefensible Eric Holder

Posted on February 1 2010 10:00 am
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“He’s a good man,” according to Evan Bayh (D-IN), the king of equivocation, in response to Chris Wallace’s question about the kind of job Attorney General Eric Holder is doing, particularly with regard to fighting terrorism. Bayh squirmed on yesterday’s Fox News Sunday as he barely managed to answer Wallace’s question about whether he would vote to fund the 9/11 trials in New York City. (He said that he would not, because the trials would be too costly.)

This is the senator who was “agnostic” about the public option (until he voted for it), so one should not expect a straight answer from him to any question. Still, amidst calls for Holder’s resignation and/or firing, this is the best defense one can offer for Holder’s job performance: “He’s a good man?” Even if Holder were a good man, which I do not believe him to be, that is not a qualification for the post of Attorney General.

Lamar Alexander (R-TN) called for Holder to testify before Congress regarding his decision to Mirandize Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab and try him in civilian court. Oh, and he also called for Holder’s resignation.

Let’s see: so far Eric Holder has dismissed the most flagrant case of voter intimidation in modern history, his Justice Department has systematically spammed and libeled bloggers, he turned the War on Terror into a law enforcement issue by trying enemy combatants captured on the battlefield in civilian court, he chose to try KSM in New York City, right near Ground Zero, he embarked on a crusade against the CIA, and he has consistently shirked any and all accountability for his actions.

Eric Holder has had a year to do something – anything – right, or even anything defensible. When Senator Can’t-Utter-an-Unkind-Word is incapable of coming up with anything resembling a solid defense of the Attorney General, it is time for a new one.

David Axelrod didn’t do a much better job defending Holder than Bayh did yesterday, and that’s his job: to make him appear defensible. If AG Holder’s actions are, in fact, defensible, he should have no problem testifying about them before Congress.  Maybe he can defend himself better than Bayh and Axelrod.

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