Back in the day when liberals castigated Joe McCarthy for witch hunting — searching for Communists in the government — there were real witches. The allegation of Trump campaign “collusion” with Russia in the 2016 campaign has gone from pretext for Clinton’s stunning loss to Donald Trump in the election to the current hunt for conspirators on the Trump campaign. As the news leaks and congressional hearings that touch on the subject demonstrate, however, the proceedings have become a true witch hunt, Salem style, though without a trace of good faith on the part of the Democratic searchers. In their newfound antagonism toward the Russians, the Democrats reek of bad faith. Cotton Mather, call your office.
Waiting for former FBI Director James Comey’s testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, I also think of Pat Buchanan’s testimony before the Senate Watergate Committee. In his statement before the committee Buchanan took pains to refute the proposition that the Nixon campaign was responsible for the Democrats’ nomination of Senator McGovern over Senator Muskie, only to be crushed by Nixon in the 1972 presidential contest:
It is being argued that illicit Republican strategy and tactics were responsible for the defeat of the strongest Democratic candidate for President, and for the nomination of the weakest. It has been contended publicly that the Democrats were denied, by our campaign and our strategy, a legitimate choice at their own convention.
It is being alleged that the campaign of 1972 was not only a rigged campaign, but an utter fraud, a “political coup by the President of the United States.”
These contentions, Mr. Chairman, are altogether untrue. Republicans were not responsible for the downfall of Senator Muskie. Republicans were not responsible for the nomination of Senator McGovern.
Buchanan argued: “The McGovern people won their own nomination. And they lost their own election.” In the current hysteria whipped up by the Democrats and their media adjunct we have a new variation on an old theme.