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This reminds me of Bette Midler's album, "Mud will be flung tonight."  

This time, though, the slinging continues in the House Intel Committee, according to Josh Marshall.  To recap:

* Ranking member Jane Harman (D-CA) released the summary of the committee's investigation into the corrupt practices of former committee member Rep. Duke Cunningham.

* Payback: Chairman Hoekstra (R-MI) yanked the clearances of one of the Democratic committee staffers and accused him of having leaked the Iraq NIE to the New York Times.  An accusation, incidentally, for which Hoekstra's staff conceded there was no evidence.

* Rep. LaHood (R-IL), who first leveled the accusation, went so far as to tell Fox News that the accusation was payback for Cunningham.  

* The staffer in question, Larry Hanauer, swore out an affidavit, stating that he played no role in the leak.

In the latest installment, Chairman Hoekstra now wants to convene an investigation.  But the Republicans alone choose an investigator and that investigator gets to look through the Democratic staff's phone logs, email, and review all other 'relevant' records all with a broad breach to uncover any "improper" conduct.

Smell funny to you?  Jane Harman thinks so too.  In her letter to Hoekstra, she reminds him

Furthermore, we are advised by the Parliamentarian that any Committee inquiry of this scope would have to be approved by a vote of the full Committee, in accordance with the well-established rules and precedents requiring collegiality for Committee action.  A unilateral investigation by you or your staff would clearly violate the rules of the House.

Josh summarizes the important backstory:

The Republicans are looking like they're going to sustain heavy losses on November 7th. One of the reasons is that the public is starting to get a clear view of the disaster they've created in Iraq and the broad sweep over corruption that pervades the entire Capitol. Hoekstra didn't like any of the Duke findings going public. He wanted Harman to agree to keep it secret. But she wouldn't. And there wasn't any legitimate reason why it shouldn't be made public. This is payback.

Most of what is happening to the Republicans right now is happening because too many facts -- about Iraq, about the corruption, and all the rest -- started to leak out. Some people wouldn't roll over anymore.

There's still 2 weeks to go with more mud to be flung.

Originally posted to mini mum on Fri Oct 27, 2006 at 05:20 AM PDT.

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