As noted here at NB yesterday, Kansas Congresswoman Nancy Boyda walked out of a House Armed Services Committee hearing on Friday after hearing General Jack Keane testify about the potential impact of a bill meant to micromanage troop deployment. Keane also testified about progress being made in the counteroffensive that has come to be known as "the surge."
Boyda walked out because the objections to that bill, and the descriptions of an improving situation in Iraq, were apparently too much to bear. She said as much when she returned. Boyda and the fly in her pocket (based on her several references to "we") went into full-rant mode (painfully long and slow-loading audio is here; scroll down to July 27's entry and click on "Audio Transcript"; Boyda's tantrum is about 60% of the way through it; also note that at least a half-dozen hecklers and demonstrators had to be removed during the hearing):
"..... As many of us, there was only so much that you could take until we, in fact, had to leave the room for a while, and so I think I am back and maybe can articulate some things that after so much of the frustration of having to listen to what we listened to."
"But let me just first say that the description of Iraq as if some way or another that it's a place that I might take the family for a vacation, things are going so well, those kinds of comments will in fact show up in the media and further divide this country instead of saying here’s the reality of the problem and people, we have to come together and deal with the reality of this issue."
Nothing in the General's testimony was even remotely suggestive of the family-vacation idea Boyda falsely attributed to him.
As to Boyda's fear that the general's testimony might show up in the media (also in essence a plea not to cover it) -- not to worry, as this Google News search shows:
A few of the Google news links above are to the Associated Press story on the situation, which appears to have been carried almost nowhere. Even that story is about her defending herself and not the impropriety of her snit fit. The Washington Times link is to the end of an editorial, which wraps rather nicely:
We are at a moment when freshman Rep. Nancy Boyda, Kansas Democrat, feels justified walking out on retired Army Gen. Jack Keane at a hearing because she cannot stomach the general's positive assessment of developments in Iraq. Let us hope we will soon arrive at a moment when Mrs. Boyda can be regarded as histrionic and no more.
Perhaps the voters of Boyda's district will have a role in making those histrionics history.
Almost two years ago, all manner of hellfire, brimstone, and ridicule rained down on Ohio Republican Congresswoman Jean Schmidt when she was accused of calling John Murtha a coward (sorry, she didn't; she said, "Cowards cut and run, Marines never do." She never called Murtha a coward; Murtha voted with Schmidt and 401 other members of Congress against immediate withdrawal [i.e., the non-cowardly choice.).
If you're a member of the other party, the consequences of, in essence, calling a general testifying under oath are apparently less severe.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.