CELEBRITY IN CHIEF BARRY O HAS A NEW AD CALLED "GO" AND THOUGH A NUMBER WISH HE WOULD, THAT'S NOT THE POINT OF THE VIDEO.
THE POINT ALSO ISN'T TO SHOW OFF HIS GIRLISH HIPS OR UNDERSCORE THAT HIS 'FANCY BOY' IN CAREFULLY TAILORED SUITS AS OPPOSED TO THE AMERICAN IDEA OF A MAN.
STILL THE COMMERCIAL GETS THOSE POINTS ACROSS IF NOT THE INTENDED ONE.
SAID DAVID AXLEROD, "ALL PEOPLE CARE ABOUT IS BARRY O AND HIS CELEBRITY! WE'RE GOING TO WIN BIG! AND THEN, AFTER THE ELECTION, HE'LL START HIS OWN FANCY BOY LINE OF DESIGNER CLOTHES! WOO-HOO!"
FROM THE TCI WIRE:
This morning, the US House Veterans Affairs Committee held a hearing. We may cover it tomorrow in terms of issues discussed. Today, we'll note that there is no excuse for the behavior of one member.
Corrine Brown made an ass out of herself. She was so out of control that censure should actually be considered for her actions. In fact, "actions" is too mature for the behavior she exhibited. The term is "tantrums." She threw tantrums.
Democrats better realize most of America doesn't give a damn that you don't control the House. They do care that you're being increasingly hostile.
Now if that's to other lawmakers, it's not appropriate but people will write it off and roll with it. When that behavior is directed at witnesses, you need to self-check.
Corrine Brown was out of control. There was no excuse for it. A witness, Dr. Nicole L. Sawyer, was answering Chair Jeff Miller's questions when Brown attacked her. Brown did not have the floor and knew she didn't. But she jumped in to attack the witness -- the obviously startled witness. We're being kind and not quoting. How is that being kind? I never quote Corrine Brown in full because she can't speak proper English. A member of the US Congress delcaring, this is just one of them today, "You only know what go on in your area!" is a public embarrassment. Brown got degrees, for something other than learning, and she made it into the US Congress. You'd think she'd have enough self-pride to have learned how to speak properly. She can't so, check the archives, we quote her selectively to avoid embarrassing her. If most of America saw examples of Brown's speaking, they would be appalled. She sounds like she never made it out of middle school. As a member of Congress, its upon her to educate herself so that she can speak proper English.
When a witness is responding to the Chair, Brown needs to learn not to interrupt. The witness wasn't saying anything outlandish or hostile and was clearly confused by Brown's tantrum. By Brown suddenly yelling out in the middle of the witness' answer. After Brown's tantrum, Miller again asked the witness to speak. The doctor did so and attempted to bring Brown into her response which sounded a lot like conciliatory remarks before Brown cut her off and started screaming that the chair better tell the witness not to talk to her, better tell the witness to address her remarks to the chair.
There was no excuse for Corrine Brown's behavior. She's long been the joke of Congress because of how she speaks and how she never knows what she's talking about. We'll touch on that last thing. Corrine at another point in the hearing was throwing a tantrum in defense of VA Secretary Eric Shinseki and insisting that this wait time results were skewed -- the results are from the VA's Office of the Inspector General. They are not skewed, they are not partisan. They are independent.
But Brown's loves to show just how stupid she can be. "They trying to," the uneducated idiot declared at one point. That would be: "They are trying . . ." It's called English. You're a member of the US Congress, you should know proper English. But, anyway, Brown was going on about how there are so many referrals outside of VA and these referrals aren't factored in.
She is highly uninformed. 2% is the percentage of referrals for last year. That was established in the April 25th Senate Veterans Affairs Committee hearing. If you missed those hearings, you can refer to "Fire everyone at the VA," "Scott Brown: It's clearly not working (Ava)," "VA paid out nearly $200 million in bonuses last year (Wally)" and that week's Wednesday's snapshot. and Friday snapshot
There's no excuse for Corrine Brown's repeated stupidity and there was no excuse for her attacking a witness, for her belitting the witness, for her attacking the degree the witness has ("She's an educational doctor! She's not a medical doctor!"), for her attacking educators (as Chair Jeff Miller noted) and for her sour attitude.
The witness is not a VA employee. The witness has her own psychology practice in Exeter, New Hampshire. She has worked on many veterans issues (I don't know her but I do know of her, I believe Elaine knows her) including setting up wellness programs and addressing TBI and PTSD. She did not deserve to be snarled at and hissed at and attacked. Unlike Corrine Brown, Nicole Sawyer has gone out of her way to help veterans. And that includes many efforts that had no payment at all.
And there was Corinne Brown telling the witness that all the members of the Committee care about is money. (The Chair rightly took offense to that.) If I were running against her (she has an opponent in the Democratic Party primary and she'll be facing a Republican in the general election), I'd simply run the video of her declaring all that Congress cares about is money. Over and over. With a slogan like, "Corrinne Brown knows her priorities." "We just care about the money. We just care about the money. We just care about the money. We just care about the money." I'd run that ad over and over and over. And she wouldn't be re-elected.
She'll try to claim that she was attempting to say that Congress should care about more than money but that's not what she said, that's not what she indicated.
The witness was explaining that you cannot do mental health in "cookie cutter" fashion. And she was explaining how, for example, eight visits to a psychologist or social worker or psychiatrist wouldn't be enough for most veterans with mental health needs.
Corrine Brown told her that would have to be enough because that's what they [Congress] had decided and that's what they were willing to pay for.
So Corrine Brown not only attacked a witness, she proclaimed that a veteran who can't manage mental health in 8 appointments is then on his or her own.
I've seen crazy behavior in hearings before. And since we've been attending for the last six or seven years, I've seen, for example, Steve Buyer attack a witness and then storm out. Slamming the door as he left the hearing. But nothing before was like today. In fact, all the worst moments of the last seven years combined couldn't equal Corrine Brown's outrageous behavior and outrageous statements.
Repeating, you're not there to attack the witnesses. And if you're on the Veterans Affairs Committee, you never should make the statement that 8 appointments is enough to heal someone. You should never be that stupid. I was asked by a veteran attending the hearing, after the hearing, "Did she say that we should be well in 8 appointments?" Yes, that is what she argued.
At one point she wanted to (loudly) insist, "I've been on this Committee for 20 years." Well in that time you should have learned how to conduct yourself. The fact that you haven't learned that doesn't give you permission to attack a witness whose only crime is attempting to answer the questions she was asked.
Brown and others need to realize that the VA's done a lousy job. Serving the needs of veterans is not playing partisan politics. Some of Brown's most outlandish behavior today can be pinned on the fact that Shinseki and the VA he heads were being called out and she saw her role as Democratic Party heavy weight. Next time, she should remember that on the Veterans Affairs Committee, she's supposed to represent veterans and she's on a committee that's supposed to provide oversight of the VA.
We could point out that with the exception of this latest audit -- the one Corrine Brown attacked repeatedly -- which resulted from the work of Senator Patty Murray (Chair of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee), everything else has been the press. It was the Washington Post that made the Walter Reed scandal news, not the House Veterans Affairs Committee. Time and again, the body that's supposed to provide oversight of the VA has done a sorry job of that and when Corrine Brown thinks that, on top of that, she can attack health care providers in a meeting, insist that it's all about money and that mental health issues can be solved in 8 sessions, that woman has serious problems and her peers need to pull her aside and convey that message to her.