The internet has brought us any number of useful phrases that we never knew we needed, many of which can be used in everyday life outside the web as well. We know the President is often “trolling,” and we know every time we turn around, the GOP has stumbled into another “epic fail.” It’s gotten to the point where we CAN’T. EVEN.
But one phrase really kind of sums up the Republican Party lately because of their propensity for hypocrisy: Self-own.
It’s when you do something so stupid in the course of trying to make someone else look bad that you inadvertently make yourself look far more foolish than you ever could have done to the other person. Ted Cruz has very nearly mastered the art, but he definitely has contenders for the throne among his colleagues. And over the course of the past few weeks, the man gunning for the number one position is South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham.
It’s not just his insane outburst during the Kavanaugh testimony before the Senate Judiciary at the end of September — although it did call his mental health into question, and render his declarations of partisan unfairness a little silly.
The incredible self-own from Senator Graham we saw recently comes in the form of an old video that’s resurfaced from his days as a House Representative when he was part of the effort to remove President Bill Clinton from office after the Starr investigation found that he’d lied about consensual sex he had while in office.
That’s a far cry from what we faced with Brett Kavanaugh — all of his six accusers made clear that anything that happened between them was non-consensual, and therefore not sex, but sexual assault. But ironically enough, Kavanaugh himself worked on Starr’s legal team, and passionately joined the effort to drive Bill Clinton from the presidency.
Obviously, they convinced enough Republicans with their findings for the House to begin impeachment, and the speeches given by the “party of family values” during those hearings were enough to break the irony meter: Many of those who voted to impeach Clinton were themselves later found to be guilty of far more heinous transgressions; Newt Gingrich, the Speaker at the time, was cheating on his wife, who was on her deathbed; Dennis Hastert, who took over after Newt was gone, later served prison time for molesting young boys… If Kavanaugh is found to have committed the crimes he stands accused of, we may have to build a monument to Republican hypocrisy that would belong right on the National Mall.
But it wasn’t sex Clinton was impeached for. It was lying. And although Republicans were eager to make the charges against Kavanaugh about nothing but “sex” from more than three decades ago, much of which is impossible to prove, the fact is that he already lied under oath even since the charges came up.
Lindsey Graham of 20 years ago has something to say about that:
Featured image via screen capture