On Wednesday, the party of no standards decided a Republican violated its standards. And Repubican Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado called them on it.
By a 223 to 207 vote, the House of Representatives censured GOP Rep. Paul Gosar of Arizona for posting a bizarre anime parody video, which depicted a character with his face photoshopped on it killing a character with Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s face on it.
According to CBS News, the censure was along a mostly party-line vote. The only Republicans in favor of the censure, which strips Gosar of all his committee assignments, were RINO Reps. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois.
The censure resolution states that “depictions of violence can foment actual violence and jeopardize the safety of elected officials, as witnessed in this chamber on January 6” and that “violence against women in politics is a global phenomenon meant to silence women and discourage them from seeking positions of authority,” CBS reported. It was the first censure of a House politician since former Democrat Rep. Charles Rangel of New York faced the measure over financial improprieties in 2010.
Gosar is a controversial legislator, and the parody video in question was outré and distasteful at best. Footage from the anime series “Attack on Titan” was edited, so Gosar and GOP Reps. Lauren Boebert and Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia were the superheroes, and AOC and President Joe Biden were the villains. According to Politico, the Arizona Republican would eventually delete the video.
As Rep. Boebert noted in a fiery speech during the debate, however, the Democrats have no room to talk on the matter — considering what they tolerate among their own.
The Colorado representative called the issue a distraction, saying that “Democrat policies are so pathetic and have done so poorly that the left has nothing else to do but troll the internet looking for ways to get offended and then try to target members and strip them of their committees.
“This is a dumb waste of the House’s time,” she continued. “But since the speaker has designated the floor to discuss members’ inappropriate actions — shall we?”
The Colorado Republican then brought up three very inconvenient names for the Democrats, at least in regards to the censure argument: Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Maxine Waters of California and Eric Swalwell, also of California.
As for Omar: “The Jihad ‘Squad’ member from Minnesota has paid her husband, and not her brother-husband, the other one, over $1 million in campaign funds,” Boebert said. “This member is allowed on the Foreign Affairs Committee while praising terrorists.”
Omar, you may recall, has paid almost $3 million in campaign funds to a firm run by a man, Tim Mynett, who would eventually become her husband — and continue to pay him long after their relationship began — for services on her campaign. This was also the latest fiasco in Omar’s curious marital history, as she was allegedly found cheating with Mynett — who was married himself — by her then-husband.
Omar also paid Mynett’s firm large sums of campaign money in the off-year of 2019. In 2018, most of her spending with Mynett’s firm consisted of expenditures after she clinched the nomination. This was unusual inasmuch as Omar is in a district so safely Democratic a bag of candy corn with a D after its name could run against Ronald Reagan — and the Gipper would lose by 30 points.
As for the “brother-husband,” this refers to allegations Omar committed immigration fraud by engaging in a sham marriage with her brother to keep him in the United States. This has never been proven, but it also hasn’t received much investigation from the mainstream media. It’s also never been disproven, and this isn’t one of those circumstances where it’s impossible to prove a negative.
Omar has also issued statements comparing the United States and Hamas, clearly with overtones of support for the latter side. Boebert only had a minute to speak, so she forgot a long series of openly anti-Semitic statements that have made Omar the most toxically anti-Jewish politician in the House since Mississippi Democrat John E. Rankin, who retired in 1953. Impressive feat.
None of this drew a censure. None of this had her stripped of her assignment on the House Foreign Relations Committee.
Then there was Maxine Waters: “A Democrat chairwoman incited further violence in the streets outside of a courthouse,” Boebert noted, referring back to Waters’ comments to a group of protesters where former Minneapolis policeman Derek Chauvin was being tried for the death of George Floyd earlier this year. While not outside the courthouse, they were clearly threatening.
“I’m going to fight with all of the people who stand for justice,” Waters said, according to Fox News. “We’ve got to get justice in this country, and we cannot allow these killings to continue.”
“We’ve got to stay on the street, and we’ve got to get more active. We’ve got to get more confrontational. We’ve got to make sure that they know that we mean business.”
Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) to BLM protesters in Brooklyn Center, MN:
“[Protestors] got to stay on the street and get more active, more confrontational. They’ve got to know that we mean business.” pic.twitter.com/GLIPoLwZnd
— Bree A Dail (@breeadail) April 18, 2021
This harkened back to her comments in 2018 about harassing and intimidating members of former President Donald Trump’s administration.
“Let’s make sure we show up wherever we have to show up. And if you see anybody from that Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out, and you create a crowd,” Waters said during a June 2018 rally.
“And you push back on them. And you tell them they’re not welcome anymore, anywhere.”
Again, no censure, no committee assignments taken away, no rebuke. She’s currently the chair of the House Financial Services Committee.
And then came Rep. Swalwell, described by Boebert as “the cherry on top.”
“My colleague and three-month presidential candidate from California, who is on the Intelligence Committee, slept with Fang Fang, a Chinese spy,” Boebert said of Swalwell.
“Let me say that again: A member of Congress who receives classified briefings was sleeping with the enemy. This is unacceptable!”
Axios first reported on the relationship between Swalwell and Christine Fang, or Fang Fang, last December. The Chinese spy targeted up-and-coming politicians, including using sexual relationships as a way to get proximity to elected power.
Their relationship, such as it may have been, continued from 2014 until 2015, when Swalwell was given a so-called “defensive briefing,” alerting him to the intelligence community’s concerns. Swalwell has mostly refused to talk about this — but even given this serious indiscretion, he remains on the House Intelligence Committee, where he receives classified briefings, despite the fact it seems more likely than not he was “sleeping with the enemy.”
In all three cases, the Democrats have declined to act. The most they could muster was a watered-down resolution regarding Omar’s anti-Semitic remarks that was so vague and general it could have applied to anyone.
In an alternate universe where the Democrats had standards and had sanctioned these three, yes, Rep. Gosar’s video would be in violation of the norms of the House of Representatives.
That’s the problem, though: For all the Democrats’ talk about norms, they have none for themselves, only for the GOP. Ilhan Omar can implicitly take the side of Hamas, Maxine Waters can incite violence and Eric Swalwell can be so dense as to most likely sleep with a spy. And nothing happens.
Given the double standard, this opens all sorts of doors. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy admitted as much during passionate remarks on Wednesday, saying it represented, “The old definition of abuse of power — rules for thee but not for me,” according to the U.K. Daily Mail. “That’s exactly what’s happening here today.”
McCarthy implied that if this was what censure had become, he knew of a few Democrats who would face it if the Republicans retook the House. He didn’t mention names, but you can probably guess who they are.
Remember the golden rule of politics: Do unto others as they do unto you. If and (more than likely) when the GOP takes over the House, rest assured turnabout will be fair play.
Rep. Boebert described exactly why that’s necessary: The Democrats have suddenly decided they have standards. They’re about to lose power, though — and they forgot the standards will be applied to them, too.
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