Anger and intimidation seem to be the norm for Republican candidates since Barack Obama’s election. We all remember Joe Miller arresting a journalist who asked him a question. We all remember Rand Paul supporters stomping on a MoveOn member’s head. And of course, we all remember the alleged attack by controversial Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice David Prosser on his fellow justice Ann Walsh Bradley. The anger is seething, and all too often not kept beneath the surface. When David Prosser was asked by a local FOX6 reporter about the allegations that he put a choke hold on Bradley June 13, his response was to grab the reporter’s microphone.
At least he didn’t grab the reporter. Or arrest him. Or stomp him. But the action follows an all-too familiar pattern in conservative politics these days, the utter and complete lack of accountability. They are a law unto themselves, they believe, and they act it out at every opportunity.
As we reported here the other day, Prosser is under investigation for the alleged assault on his fellow justice by the Dane County sheriff’s office and the Wisconsin Judicial Commission. On June 15, two days after the assault is said to have occurred, Prosser was asked by Capitol Police Chief Charles Tubbs to attend anger management classes.
It sounds like a good suggestion. If a Tea Partier can’t even get along with a FOX reporter, there isn’t much hope for him. Probably realizing the heinous nature of his deed, Prosser gave the microphone back to the hapless FOXite but like a good Tea Partier he refused to answer any questions about the alleged assault on Bradley.
This putting themselves above the law of the land is a complete violation of the Constitution both in letter and in spirit. They hold themselves accountable to no one but their corporate and religious sponsors. The people have no right to ask questions and no right to demand an answer, and that includes especially the press, even FOX when it oversteps the perceived bounds. It would be no surprise to see FOX apologizing for asking the question in the first place. Another one of those unethical “gotcha” moments Sarah Palin hates so much.
Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, and the other Founding Fathers (no, not John Quincy Adams, Ms. Bachmann!) all managed to engage in politics and often rancorous debate without any of them choking anyone. You would think the party that claims to be their champions could behave in similar fashion. But these claims are all smoke and mirrors; we have seen what they are really like.
America has been forewarned by these Republican displays of arrogance exactly where citizens stand: no questions, no answers, no democracy; one political party, a party controlled by corporate and fundamentalist religious interests that is both anti-labor and anti-environment. Democracy is not at the end of the Republican road to take back America. Totalitarianism is. And if America lets the Republicans win in 2012, it will have no right to complain later.