Press omits explanation
of Senate's Panetta ploy
Why was zero opposition permitted to the confirmation of Leon Panetta as defense secretary? The Republican leadership clearly decided to close ranks and brook no opposition from the Tea Party wing.
Ordinarily, the GOP wants to register some opposition to President Obama's nominees, and has in fact thwarted quite a few of his choices.
It may be that lawmakers did not want to offend one of their own, Panetta having been a Democratic congressman from California who went on to serve as President Clinton's chief of staff. Yet ordinarily, the status of former lawmaker is insufficient to overcome partisan politicking.
This leaves the question of why the Senate leadership promoted such bipartisan unanimity. The probable answer is that this was a maneuver to protect lawmakers voting in favor of Panetta from "McCarthyism." With everyone voting in his favor, charges of promoting a man with communist networking credentials would be diluted.
Yet, this apparent motive was censored by media reporting the vote, quite apparently in order to black out all mention of communist connections.
Again, a unified front is erected against "McCarthyism" that shields the public from awareness of communist political networking in America.