Yep, they were ready.
Less than 50 minutes after President Obama nominated Thomas Perez to be our next Secretary of Labor, Rush Limbaugh was already attacking him. (Rush didn’t even know what position Perez had been nominated to – but he was quite certain he could tell his listeners “exactly who this guy is”.)
Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) was already vowing to use parliamentary rules to block Senate action on the nomination. Senators Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) were right there, giving the press their talking points. Even Investors’ Business Daily weighed in, with an editorial calling Perez “radical” and “a boatload of trouble.”
The GOP messaging campaign was primed and ready to go, well before the nomination was even made. Listen to the words they use: “New Black Panthers”, “Hugo Chavez”, “illegal immigrants”, “hardcore Islamist groups”. Political code words, galore.
Now look at the GOP talking points from an objective perspective. Someone has sifted through this man’s entire career, looking for anything and everything they could exaggerate or stretch into an innuendo. Things that happened at the Department of Justice, before Perez got there? Quotes taken out of context? Unsubstantiated accusations made by one political commentator, repeated as “fact” by others?
Gotta wonder what they’re so scared of.
Yep, looks like it’s going to be an ugly confirmation fight. Need a primer to separate fact from fiction? Media Matters has a good one, here.