Duncan Black (see Dance PNAC Monkey Dance) catches Gary Schmitt sliming Larry Johnson. We noted how Ramesh Ponnunu also accused Mr. Johnson of being a Democratic partisan. Matthew Yglesias places Schmitt v. Johnson in its proper context:
This is “slime and defend” at its best. Joe Wilson said some stuff that was politically inconvenient for the White House. So the White House had to say some mean stuff about him. His wife got him his job. He was unqualified. If that entailed blowing a CIA operative’s cover, that’s no big deal. But now you need to slime his wife. She wasn’t really undercover. The Director of Central Intelligence, the Justice Department, a special prosecutor, and a whole series of federal judges are just confused, I guess. Now Johnson comes along and says the right is making stuff up, so it’s time to go after him. Simple as that. Now everyone’s put on notice — make trouble for the White House and they’ll come gunning for you.
Kevin Drum provides further insight into the motivations of the Washington Republicans:
But we’ve learned one thing already: when presented with even a hint of evidence that someone on their team has treated national security with cavalier disdain, conservative concern with national security gets thrown overboard without a second thought.
Kevin may be right about the “conservatives” at Fox News, the National Review, and the Weekly Standard as well as the Washington Republicans. Let’s hope the rank-and-file Republicans are more like Larry Johnson.