Let’s take a civics quiz. In Congress which is worse: being corrupt or being gay? Time is up. Pencils down. If you answered being gay, you’ve been paying attention, class. Of the 10 Commandments, it is much better to break the one about stealing than the one about sex.
This teaching moment comes to you courtesy of His Holiness, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, who took a powder from reporters crowded into the Capitol this week after the indictment of Ted Stevens, the Senate’s longest-serving Republican and once third in line to the presidency.
You would think McConnell had been ambushed by the National Enquirer. He punted, saying he had just learned of the news and would “have more to say about it later.” In less than 30 seconds, he was gone.
No disgust. No outrage. No pressure on Stevens to skulk back to his much-improved chalet in Alaska.
Contrast this with McConnell’s instant reaction upon finding out that Senator Larry Craig had pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for disorderly conduct stemming from a foot-tapping encounter with an undercover cop in a Minneapolis restroom.
That, McConnell said, was a “serious matter” that he immediately referred to the Ethics Committee. He vowed he would look at “other aspects of the case to determine if additional action is required,” with the implication that tarring and feathering Craig might not be harsh enough.