I cannot say for certain whether Alabama U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore is guilty of sexually abusing a 14-year-old as accused or is innocent as he insists, but what I can say for certain is that this is an orchestrated political hit. We saw something very comparable happen in Missouri five years ago with the political assassination of then U.S Senate candidate Todd Akin. I got to watch that up close. I know how that went down.
As former CBS reporter Sheryl Attkisson documents in her bestseller, The Smear, the Democrats, led by David Brock of the Media Matters empire, run a highly sophisticated dumpster diving operation designed to catch Republicans in some outrage, real or imagined. In Akin’s case, it was Brock’s American Bridge entity that caught Akin on a St. Louis area Sunday morning talk show making an awkward–but defensible–comment about rape.
With the full collaboration of the mainstream American media, American Bridge had elevated Akins’s faux pas to a national scandal within six hours. The Democrats counted not on only on the partisanship of the media, but also on the perverse self-destructiveness of the Republican establishment. Certain GOP heavyweights never wanted Akin to be senator just as they do not want Moore to be a senator.
There was not a breath of scandal about Akin, a happily married father of six, three of whose sons served in the U.S. Marines. Akin’s sin in the eyes of the media, like Moore’s, was to be Republican. Akin’s sin in the eye of the GOP establishment, again like Moore’s, was to be uncool. Both men are old school Christian conservatives unwilling to accommodate their principles to the progressive fashion du jour.
The Republican nominee in 2012, Mitt Romney condemned Akin within hours of his putative transgressions, telling the media: “Congressman Akin’s comments on rape are insulting, inexcusable and, frankly, wrong. Like millions of other Americans, we found them to be offensive.” He insisted that Akin drop out of the race even though that would have led to the loss of the Senate seat to incumbent Claire McCaskill. Paul Ryan followed suit. So did John McCain. Romney and McCain have done the same to Moore, as his Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell.
Here is what Romney should have said in the Akin case, “A credibly accused rapist is giving the keynote speech at the Democratic convention in two weeks, and you want me to denounce a decent, God-fearing man for his inelegant comments about rape? No, not happening, and if the truth hurts, get some ice on that.”
That same convention would also honor the memory of the recently deceased Sen. Ted Kennedy. The nation’s progressives, Claire McCaskill among them, would cheer teary-eyed, forgetting for a moment the night the married Kennedy drove off a bridge and left the young woman in his car to drown lest this illicit tryst hurt his career.
If Romney had scorched the Democrats for their hypocrisy in 2012, he would be president today and Todd Akin would be a U.S. Senator, but a history records, he did not. John McCain served alongside Kennedy for years. I cannot recall him ever asking Kennedy to step down. I cannot recall the Washington Post making that request of either Bill Clinton or Ted Kennedy. And Lord knows the Post would never have invested the energy it did in outing Moore’s accuser if Moore had been any kind of Democrat.
Yes, Moore has admitted to dating teenage girls when single. Yea, that’s a little weird, but so was Alabama in the 1970s. Besides, I am in no position to finger point. My father, legally an adult, married my mother when she was 15 and not even pregnant.