Michele Bachmann drew national criticism for practicing McCarthyism after making unfounded allegations of Muslim Brotherhood conspiracy against Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin.
Now Bachmann’s male counterpart in Congress, Steve King (R-Iowa) has doubled down on the conspiracy allegations against Abedin.
Steve King Stands By Michele Bachmann Crusade Against Muslim Brotherhood, Huma Abedin
The Huffington Post | By Patrick Svitek Posted: 08/24/2012 3:27 pm Updated: 08/24/2012 3:32 pm
Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) suggested Monday that the family of Huma Abedin — a top aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton — is “deeply entrenched” in the Muslim Brotherhood, echoing a controversial crusade launched by his Tea Party allies in the House.
Earlier this summer, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) and four other conservative firebrands sent letters to several federal agencies inquiring about whether the Muslim Brotherhood is infiltrating the government. The letters named Abedin as a possible interloper…
“The things I am hearing from people doing investigations beyond what we see in the news indicate very strongly to me that her family network, her network, is deeply entrenched in the Muslim Brotherhood,” (said King.) “That’s what I see from the news, and that’s what I see from the investigative reports that have not yet been published.”
King cites “investigative reports”…from who? From national security entities like the FBI or the CIA? Nope. Investigative reports from people that King doesn’t name. As you may know, there’s a whole sub-culture of paranoids producing “investigative reports” designed to demonstrate various conspiracies in government.
That’s an institutional feature of the nuthouse right that dates back to McCarthy and before. When Senator McCarthy was challenged to name credible sources for his allegations that there was a “vast” Communist conspiracy operating inside American elected government, he refused to do so. He was able to keep the nation in a panic about hundreds of non-existent Communists in government for years, until his charade fell apart.
King and Bachmann apparently feel that they’re on to the same scam that made McCarthy so powerful and so relevant in American politics. Members of Congress can float crackpot allegations dismissed by American law enforcement agencies. They can float these crackpot claims and sources as if they have substance–and do so successfully for years, unless the press stands up to them and demands credible proof.
As for Abedin: she can’t win unless the press and some of Bachmann’s fellow Republicans continue to dismiss the Bachmann/King allegations as unfounded. Because if Abedin retires “to make this smear go away,” the right will present that as an admission of her guilt and the administration’s. If Abedin stays on, she’ll continue to serve as a whipping post for the same right wing smears…
…even though her family’s connections to the Muslim Brotherhood have already been examined by law enforcement and national security, even though her loyalty to the US has already been confirmed by leading Republicans.
King and Bachmann are reveling in the sweet spot of McCarthyism: they don’t have to prove anything, they present cr*p allegations they don’t have to substantiate, they present these as if they’re the “secretly sourced” gold standard for truth–and thus they maintain the support of paranoids and haters everywhere.
The only thing Bachmann and King sacrifice is national security–and the unity of the people of the United States of America in the fight against terror. And losses there do not concern them; not in the least.