The last week and a half has been filled with many examples of Conservatives Behaving Badly. From Louis Gohmert’s repeated exhibitions of mean-spirited, high-handed blithering idiocy to Don Young’s open bigotry to Larry Klayman’s flat-out unspeakableness, there’s been an embarrassment of embarrassments coming from the Cons. But there are two incidents in particular on which I want to focus because to my eyes they may represent a mini-trend: Two cases where conservatives bashed non-conservative elected officials by using the children and grandchildren of these officials as political punching bags.
The first instance is where, breaking not just tradition but affronting basic human decency, Matt Boyle over at Breitbart’s shop is taking dead (and stupid) aim at Sasha and Malia Obama:
Breitbart.com writer Matt Boyle reported on the specific location where President Obama’s teenage daughters are vacationing for spring break, ignoring the decades-old journalistic tradition that media outlets should not report on a president’s minor children when they are not attending “official or semi-official events” for privacy and security reasons.
The second instance is where a sizable chunk of the “respectable” portion of the Minnesota branch of conservatism — people like John Gilmore (who you may remember from his creepy behavior towards two Muslim women and their pedicabbie friend outside of the Netroots Nation 2011 event in Minneapolis), Sheila Kihne, and John Rouleau — are having backarching Troofer rage ecstasies over the (cue the scaaaaaary organ music!) what is allegedly the suspicious timing circumstances of the C-section that resulted in the birth of Democratic Governor Mark Dayton’s first grandchild — timing that caused him to (eeek!) do some rearranging of his schedule (oh noezzz!):
Governor Dayton had had another event scheduled from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., speaking at the St. Paul Chamber of Commerce's "Public Affairs Series featuring Governor Mark Dayton," but had sent Chief of Staff Tina Flint Smith in his place; the substitution had been arranged two weeks before.
Finance and Commerce reports in Dayton assistant stresses support for business:
Dayton “deeply respects” the business
community, said Smith, who said she was speaking in the governor’s stead
because he was becoming a grandfather for the first time. (A Dayton
spokeswoman confirmed the governor’s son Eric and his wife, Cornelia
(Cory) Dayton, were the parents-to-be.)
Not good enough for a number of Minnesota's finest conservatives commentators on twitter. The substitution became a "cancellation;" without stopping to learn the circumstances of the birth, it became "induced labor;" and, the lack of interest by the press about the alleged snubbing of the business community became occasion for outrage.
Go over to Sally Jo’s site and witness the conservative twittery in all its embarrasing glory. As an apertif, savor the irony of Arthur Dimmesdale stand-in Michael Brodkorb being the voice of reason and decency, gently trying to make Gilmore et al understand why going after Governor Dayton’s grandchild is a really dumb move.