In an astute Wall Street Journal column almost exactly one year ago, my daughter Eliana named House Oversight Committee Ranking Member Elijah Cummings “The IRS’s best friend in Congress.” And that was before Cummings’s moving tribute to IRS Commissioner John Koskinen in last night’s hearing!
In his column on last night’s hearing, Byron York names Cummings the best supporting actor. Having watched the hearing, I would say the competition for the award was fierce, but I can’t deny that Cummings is a reasonable choice. Byron writes:
Choking back raw emotion, Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., concluded his role in Monday’s hearing by thanking Koskinen for his service to the IRS, to America, to his countrymen, to all people, to the East Coast, to the West Coast, etc., etc.
“I thank you from the depths of my heart,” he said.
Cummings, who is up to his neck in the IRS scandal, railed against the House panel, shouting that multiple hearings on the targeting of conservative groups somehow tarnishes Congress’ reputation.
“I appreciate you coming into this institution,” he told Koskinen , “giving it the best you’ve got, and then having to come in here and go through this hell!”
Cummings’ concluding remarks continued in that vein: Full of praise for the IRS, contempt for congressional Republicans and with enough emotion to embarrass the entire cast of a Hallmark movie[.]
I’m naming Cummings the most absurd Democrat of the past 24 hours. In case you missed it, here is the ocular proof (warning: the clip may be preceded by an obnoxious ad).