It's the hypocrisy: Say what you will about comments, but it is, truly, the principle
Say what you will about what Nevada Sen. Harry Reid said about pre-candidate Barack Obama.
Analyze what he meant and whether what he said was truly an awkwardly stated truth or simply a retread of racism.
But that is not what the problem is, now, for those on the other side of the aisle.
The reason so many people are so worked up over the comments Reid made -- and the support he has received from his fellow senators and Democrats -- is that they have seen this scenario before, with a much different result.
This particular incident comes at a time when there is a fierce battle on over health care -- and when every vote counts. So, losing even one vote to a scandal would be nothing short of catastrophic.
So for those who are on the Democratic side of the aisle, the decision is easy: Harry Reid stays put.
And by the way, that is not necessarily the wrong decision. The comments were not overt racism -- and people say things they shouldn't often in politics. Intent should matter. The comments were also released in a tell-all book, not a part of primetime speech.
But what makes the GOP point fingers is that had the shoe been on the other foot -- and it has -- there might have been a much different call.
So the message to Democrats is this: Keep Harry Reid, but remember that kindness and benefit of the doubt when the shoe is next on the other foot. That way, this will seem like the right decision, not politics.
That is only right.
Published in Editorials on January 12, 2010 11:27 AM