Harry Reid's 'Smelly Tourists' Comment: No Republican or Conservative Would Survive It

HarryReid1208.jpgSome think that Harry Reid must live a charmed life.

After all, he asserted last year that the Iraq War "is lost." Now it looks like victory, at least to seasoned on-the-ground observers like Michael Yon.

He has fretted over how fossil fuels like coal make us sick. Never mind that life expectancy, largely, uh, fueled by industrialization and its accompanying higher living standards, continues to climb.

In each case, the consequences to Reid's political career have apparently been minimal.

Now Reid has said that visitors to the Capitol -- everyday American citizens like you and me -- stink, and that he's glad to get away from them.

Really (HT Michelle Malkin; last paragraph bolded by me; CNS News also has coverage):

Reid: We won't smell the tourists anymore

The Capitol Visitors Center, which opened this morning, may have tripled its original budget and fallen years behind schedule, but Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid found a silver lining for members of Congress: tourists won't offend them with their B.O. anymore.

"My staff tells me not to say this, but I'm going to say it anyway," said Reid in his remarks. "In the summer because of the heat and high humidity, you could literally smell the tourists coming into the Capitol. It may be descriptive but it's true."

Suffice it to say that an "obviously elitist" conservative or Republican who said something similar would have found himself or herself the subject of the lead story in almost every Old Media outlet still standing. How would the Nevada senator react if tourists and the American people decided that they would avoid further offending Reid by not visiting his home-state tourist havens of Las Vegas and Reno?

As it is, coverage of Reid's gratuitous insult has been relatively light, as seen in this Google News search on "Reid Capitol tourists" (not in quotes):

GoogNewsReidCapitolTourists120308

353-plus articles is very low compared to the many thousands of results that appear with many national stories.

The New York Times has no coverage of its own, but does carry the Associated Press's coverage of the opening, where reference to Reid's remarks can be found -- in one-sentence paragraphs 13 and 14. The Times's Print Edition has no story (use this link after December 3).

It's not that Harry Reid lives a charmed life. Instead he lives a sheltered life, with traditional media outlets providing most of the shelter. Will New Media do him in by the time he's next up for re-election?

I could say so much more, but I'll leave it to commenters.

Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.

Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.