Earlier today on WMAL-FM in Washington DC, I interviewed former Clinton White House Counsel Lanny Davis. I asked Davis whether it was legitimate to ask Chuck Hagel to disclose his sources of income from the various speeches he's given in the years since he left the US Senate, just as Davis' friend Hillary Clinton did before her confirmation as Secretary of State.
Davis agreed that it was "absolutely correct" to seek such information; he just quarreled with the way in which Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) asked for the information.
This is a recurring theme from the left and from media analysts. They continue to hammer and demonize Cruz as the second coming of Joe McCarthy for his line of questioning last week. Here is the video of Sen. Cruz explaining why he wanted the disclosure from Hagel. According to the left, this is tantamount to questioning Hagel's patriotism.
After you watch Cruz' delivery, you are hard pressed to see the wild-eyed extremist being described by the media. In fact, when reviewing the Sunday shows that assailed Cruz this weekend, I discovered that very few of them actually played clips of the hearing, because Cruz' calm and reasoned demeanor would undercut their claims.
Further, the breathless attack from the New York Times this weekend included this extended quote from Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO) comparing Cruz to McCarthy, but the Times neglected to print any actual quote of Cruz from the hearing itself. They merely allowed the Democrats to tell their readers he was awful.
“He basically came out and made the accusation about money from North Korea or money from our enemies, and he just laid out there all of this accusatory verbiage without a shred of evidence,” said Senator Claire McCaskill, Democrat of Missouri. “In this country we had a terrible experience with innuendo and inference when Joe McCarthy hung out in the United States Senate, and I just think we have to be more careful.”
The media attacks on Cruz continue; the myth of the false narrative perpetuates, and it is succeeding in distracting from the legitimate and important questions Cruz raised at the hearing. It's nice to have a stalwart liberal like Lanny Davis affirm Cruz' line of questioning and merely criticize him on style points.