(Cross-filed under “Ethics Dunce,” “Unethical Quote of the Month,” “Incompetent Elected Official,” “When Ethics Alarms Don’t Ring,” and “Wow, What An Idiot!”)
I would have thought that both parties would have required briefings for all their elected officials on what constitutes workplace assault and sexual harassment. Apparently not, because this guy apparently seems to think that when your boss, a powerful Senator, demands that you submit to his sexual advances, it ‘s OK as long as you give in. It’s not. Never mind that Komi’s tweet attempts to excuse Biden —and his denials—by blaming the victim.
Oh, the dead ethics alarm started pinging softly once enough colleagues and constituents contacted him to say, “Are you out of your mind??? Take that thing down!” It may have been too late anyway. His own party, as corrupted and hypocritical as it has revealed itself to be during this fiasco, couldn’t that this pass. New Hampshire House Speaker Stephen Shurtleff, also a Democrat, said in a statement, “I am appalled by Representative Komi’s comments. They were dismissive and hurtful to survivors of sexual assault across the Granite State and across the country. The comments are not fitting for the New Hampshire House of Representatives and immediately upon learning of them, I called him and asked Representative Komi to resign his seat.”
A spokesman for the New Hampshire democratic Party itself also called for his resignation, saying,
Representative Komi’s comment is wrong, inappropriate, and offensive to all Democrats, and does not reflect the values of our party. I applaud Speaker Shurtleff’s swift action, calling for Rep. Komi to resign immediately
And I was just going to write that I wondered which ploy Komi would try to wiggle out of this. My money was going to be on “This doesn’t reflect who I am,” with a touch of the Pazuzu Excuse and the recently resurgent Yoo’s Rationalization, or “It isn’t what it is.”
As I was typing that, the news arrived that the idiot resigned, along with a crummy hybrid between a Level 9 non-apology apology [ “Deceitful apologies, in which the wording of the apology is crafted to appear apologetic when it is not…”] and a #10 apology [ “An insincere and dishonest apology designed to allow the wrongdoer to escape accountability cheaply, and to deceive his or her victims into forgiveness and trust, so they are vulnerable to future wrongdoing.’]…
“I also want to offer my sincere apologies to anybody whose feelings may have been hurt by the tweets. I am and will continue to be a supporter of victims of sexual and domestic assault. The tweets were very poorly worded and do not reflect who I am and what I stand for. I ask for the forgiveness of all who have been a victim of sexual or any other kind of assault.”
I think the Democrats need to explain what the rules are and what values they are promoting. It’s too complicated for me. As I see understand it, all women making credible–barely credible, in the case of Dr. Blasey-Ford–accusations of sexual misconduct should be believed, especially when the man accused is in line to ascend to a powerful position, unless the powerful man being accused is a Democrat being prepared to unseat a repugnant adversary, in which case the woman shouldn’t be believed, and it is okay for the man accused to impugn her honesty, even if he has previously stated that such women should be presumed truthful.
Thus it is then acceptable for the accused to denigrate her as a liar, and for other Democrats to imply she is lying as well. BUT to try to reconcile her statement and the denials of the accused by suggesting without evidence that she in some way consented to the assault under duress (which legally changes little) is less tolerable than denying her veracity, which many higher officials have done shamelessly and with impunity.
Do I have that right? I’m also trying to figure out how a black state legislator in New Hampshire has to resign for speaking disrespectfully about a victim of alleged sexual assault, but a Democratic Lt. Governor in Virginia, also African American, who has said that two women that accused him of rape and sexual assault respectively were lying, is still in office. I was mistakenly under the impression that the Democratic Party stood for extra leniency in all matters for African Americans in their ranks, which would explain the political survival of Fairfax, but then poor Komi was thrown to the virtual wolves like he was just another disgusting, sexist white man.
I wonder if the Democrats know what their values are any more.