Washington Post: House Republican leaders tightened their control over the ethics committee yesterday by ousting its independent-minded chairman, appointing a replacement who is close to them and adding two new members who donated to the legal defense fund of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay.
Committee chair Rep. Joel Hefley was not only replaced, but removed from the panel entirely. Taking his place is Rep. Richard Hastings, a good man, a loyal man, a party man, a man with his nose firmly up House Speaker Dennis Hastert's ass.
"From now on," claimed Hastings, "we ain't gonna be vestigatin no more Republicans. Everbody knows Republicans got ethics to burn, so why waste all that gall-derned taxpayer money. We got us a ding dang mandate for gosh sakes. This is our club. The people done spoke, and they wanna know just how it is that the Demoncrats got so many seats in the House when they ain't a soul I know what voted for em. Let me just ask you, what the heck is wrong with that Nancy Pelosi's eyes? She looks like she got two sets of eyebrows, and that ain't right".
Hefley believed that he was dismissed for being too independent. "Nobody should be there to protect anybody. They should be there to protect the integrity of the institution."
Hastert disagreed. "Whine, whine, whine. Is that all these people can do, whine and obstruct? Joel needs to apologize. He just received a heck of an assignment, chair of the House Refreshments Committee. Democrats are good at things like that, picking out the right kind of cookies, and making sure the coffee is hot and strong. Just leave the governing to us."
©2005, Mark Hoback