Caught Lawrence O’Donnell on Al Franken’s show, saying Nancy Pelosi is walking a risky line by advocating John Murtha for House Majority Leader. Pointing out that Murtha’s problems with Abscam and CREW (being named one of only four Democrats on the “20 Most Corrupt Members of Congress” list) make it tough for Pelosi to say that she is removing the ethical cloud that hangs over the House.
O’Donnell also suggests that Pelosi taking a similar risk by considering Alcee Hastings, a former Federal judge who was impeached and convicted by Congress, the the chairmanship of the House Intelligence Committee. Pointing out that Hastings “got all the revenge he is entitled to” when he was elected to Congress from Florida, O’Donnell says that a far better choice would be Jane Harman from California.
I don’t know about Harman; apparently Pelosi’s opinion of Harman is based on personal stuff, whatever that is. But in the case of Murtha, I think you can make a pretty strong case for him, being that the election was about Iraq and that Murtha was way out in front on that issue. He reminds me of Sen. Sam Ervin, no friend of civil rights, who admirably chaired the Senate Select Committee on Watergate back in 1973. Regardless of his past, on that one issue, Ervin was unassailable.