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Conservative media make hero of soap-opera Democrat Eric Massa -- bad politics for Republicans

New York's Eric Massa

He resigned to duck House Ethics Committee charges that he sexually harassed a male staffer. Then he blamed Democrats in the White House and in Congress for pushing him out because he voted against healthcare reform legislation.

Eric Massa's charges would be laughable if they weren't so lurid -- his latest accusation is that White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel lobbied him on healthcare reform while both were showering in the House gym.

Any opportunity to dump on Emanuel was like catnip for the conservative media, which rushed to embrace the less-than-one-term Democrat from upstate New York. Rush Limbaugh vowed to make a “national story” out of Massa. "He going to have so much support from people,” said the conservative commentator. This despite the fact that Massa once called Limbaugh "a pompous coward."

Now some Republicans are warning their conservative colleagues to do their homework.

"'Conservative hero' my foot," said blogger Michelle Malkin, who called Massa a political opportunist and lifelong progressive zealot. "Crapweasel is too kind a description for the desperate, bottom-feeding Massa," she wrote. "He is not a useful idiot. He’s just an idiot."

The irony is that Massa voted against the healthcare bill from the left -- because it did not include a public option.

All in all, Democrats might be forgiven if they look for a silver lining here. One Democratic strategist told Politico: “If the stories that are circulating are true about what really happened, the Republicans are going to hold up someone as the cause célèbre who harassed male members of his staff. Is that really where they want to be?”

Sadly, this is not the last we've heard of Massa, who first claimed that he was leaving Congress because of a recurrence of cancer. Fox News' Glenn Beck plans to have Massa on his show for “the full hour” Tuesday because “all Americans need to hear him.”

-- Johanna Neuman

Photo: Eric Massa, en route from Corning, N.Y., to his January 2009 swearing-in ceremony in Washington, tops off the tank of his fuel cell vehicle. Credit: General Motors

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Comments () | Archives (5)

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I don't think conservative media is making a hero of Eric Massa. I think Massa's story should be checked out by all media, so americans can know the truth. He's probably lying about some things he said, to cover his wrong behavior. But, I believe Obama, Pelosi and Reid will intimidate, bribe and twist arms of their party members to get Obama's healthcare bill passed, no matter how bad it might be for americans and the country. Obama is not caring about his party members future elections, nor the good of the country. He is thinking about his own possible 2012 election.

In some cities Narco Cops are replaced every six months in order to keep them honest. Becoming too familiar with drug dealers has led to corruption. The same system should be used with politicians. The longer they stay in office the more crooked they become. The search for an honest man is never ending. They live only in heaven. Don't expect any politician to be Gods gift to the public. If you do you will be disappointed.

No one called Massa a hero. I watched the Glenn Beck's show with Massa. I didn't believe all Massa said. Glenn Beck didn't either. As a matter of fact, Mr. Beck apologized to his viewers for wasting an hour of their time at the end of his show. I hope the person that wrote this post watched the show to find out for themselves.

I do however agree with Listen on his comment: "I think Massa's story should be checked out by all media, so americans can know the truth. He's probably lying about some things he said, to cover his wrong behavior." I don't think that is too much to ask for but I won't be holding my breath for it either.

I find it laughable how quickly the "good and caring" Democrats who so much appreciate "a society where everyone speaks their mind and stand up for what they believe in" suddenly discover that someone is a lurid and despicable person the moment he starts to present an obstacle to the master plan.

My goodness - what a hypocritical piece of work.

Now, I agree that it's bad politics here. But the story is not about the Republicans, rather it's about the hypocrisy of the Democrat's and the National media.

When oh when, has it been that when some Republican came out with a damaging story (for the R's - for the Bush admin. etc.), be it that they are ethical or not, nuts or sane, etc., that our national media (LA Times included here) did not go to town dancing and using it 24/7 until it was committed to memory by all?

Massa is a disgrace. Obviously however, if his story about Rahm Emanuel in the shower is true, so is the agents of this white house. Goodness, how many times last nite did Larry King (in his interview out to destroy Massa in order to protect the Obama administration and the Democratic leadership -- all staged by King) repeat that it's the job of the President's chief of staff to be tough on the team - to keep them in order - to demand that they fall in line with the party's marching orders, etc. Guess that means keeping the little boys in the shower in line as well?

King was not alone in the media yesterday in his effort to protect Rahm Emanuel.

When do we remember the national press, and it's allies, coming out supporting, say a Karl Rove, for being tough pushing the President's agenda.
In fact, Karl is still out there doing his job - supporting his views... and the national media are still out there trying to cut his legs off - they're all out to convince us that he little to say because they hate him.

Everything is fueled by hatred in our media - their hatred, first.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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