It was hard to imagine how the questions at the House Hearings on the Flint, Mi. water crisis could be any more diametrically opposed from one another. Each party can choose to base their inquiries on actual events and facts, or they can sprint to the other side of the gamut and spin an intricate web of lies that will inevitably reveal themselves as the macabre contortionists of TRUTH that they are.
It's a very typical pattern with Jason Chaffetz: slander (and cut if possible) a program, then blame the cut agency for not doing its job. Embassy security, now the EPA. And now he lies about a meeting that never happened.
The Democrats, namely Reps Cummings (MD), Cartwright (PA) and Connolly (VA), leveled a fierce and precise strike. They just told the ugly truth which was damning as hell to the criminally negligent Michigan Emergency Manager System and its leader, 'one tough nerd,' Governor Rick Snyder.
Republican Reps. Jason Chaffetz (UT) and Tim Walberg (MI) manufactured their own facts from the GOP's talking points memo and, for the most part, the media packaged another, painful 'both-siderist' scenario for its grossly misled audience. Guess who was featured later on CBS?
Snyder said he took immediate action, reconnecting the city with Detroit's water supply and distributing water filters and testing residents - especially children - for elevated lead levels.
None of that was true, as our Progressive friends at Eclectablog have revealed in painstaking detail as the events unfolded.
Another not-so-shocking revelation, at least for those outside the party-of-insanity, is both Chaffetz and Walberg referenced an alleged conversation with EPA regulations manager Miguel Del Toral that never took place. The GOP reps claimed that Del Toral was punished for being a whistle blower, trying to deflect the real blame from Snyder to the dreaded EPA.
(Both Republicans) indicated during their questioning that they had met with EPA staffer and whistleblower Miguel Del Toral and that he told them that he had been punished for a memo he written last summer, a preliminary version of which he leaked to the media.
Del Toral never had a conversation with either Republican. He sent an email to Acting Regional Administrator Robert Kaplan:
I was never required by anyone to take ethics training because of Flint or for any other reason other than the mandatory ethics training required to be taken annually by all EPA employees. There is probably some confusion from the emails between Ann Coyle and myself where I was seeking advice from Ann, but that was something I requested.
On the meetings with congressional folks…the first I heard about my ‘meeting’ with Chaffetz was via an email from Nicole Cantello who forwarded an article to me which stated that I had met with him. As I told Nicole, the only time I saw him was at an open house in Flint last Saturday. I was at the corrosion control booth and he stopped by, shook my hand, we exchanged greetings, and he moved on. Same thing with Congressman Walberg. Hi and bye.
So apparently Chaffetz and Hedman are capable of beaming brain waves during a handshake, because they got full discussions of actionable items while shaking hands at an open house.
Everybody knows these Chaffetz hearings are same as they were with Planned Parenthood and Benghazi. They are not fact-finding. They are not interested in solutions. They exist merely to fling political poo and enhance the wingnut cred of the tea party Congressman from Utah.
It's likely these hearings will accomplish far too little for the victims of lead-poisoning in Flint, far too late. At least the Democrats have shown a little more backbone than usual during the proceedings. Predictably, the GOP had no valid points or arguments and they will likely face no consequence for their lying.
We can only hope that Theodore Parker's famous quote that the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice is true. I believe that inevitably, history will reveal that the denouement of the GOP was not a sudden event, but rather a sordid chronology of deplorably unethical and criminal conduct. Their demise will be the only way to alleviate the suffering of the American people too ignorant to see them for what they are.