In it, but not of it. TPM DC

Bond: No You Guys Are Running A Banana Republic

McCain: In Banana Republics they prosecute people for actions they didn't agree with under previous administrations.

Bond: This whole thing about punishing people in past administrations reminds me more of a Banana Republic than the United States of America. We don't criminally prosecute people we disagree with when we change office. There are lots of questions that could have been asked of the Clinton administration failing to recognize the war on terror. They did not. The Bush administration went forward, and that's the way our country should. The President said he was going to be forward looking and now he has opened up the stab in the back.

That's either world champion chutzpah or an unusually pointed example of projection. Either way it's a novel approach and, if it catches on as a meme or is in any way effective, the two should win some sort of ribbon for rhetorical jiujitsu. But, then again, I'm sure crazier ideas have gained a great deal of purchase in our discourse, so why not this one?

Separately, one is tempted to remind Bond of things like the Starr investigation and the Clinton impeachment. If the point of all this is that administrations should be investigated while they're still in power and not after, then why did Republicans oppose any real measure of oversight from 2001-2008?

About The Author


Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at