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Congressman Murtha Smeared Again On Hannity & Colmes

Reported by Ellen - May 23, 2006

For the third night in a row, the FOX News “patriots” on Hannity & Colmes did their best to smear decorated war veteran Rep. John Murtha.

Murtha has infuriated conservatives by speaking out about an incident in Haditha, Iraq in which civilians were allegedly murdered by US troops. Murtha said the killings were “in cold blood.” In the same sentence, he also said “Our troops overreacted because of the pressure on them.” But that part has been consistently overlooked by the conservative “patriots” who keep trying to condemn him for attacking our soldiers. As I wrote a few days ago, the FOX News conservatives must be pretty darned worried about the soon-to-be-released report by the Pentagon about this incident or they wouldn’t be so desperate to smear Murtha. An article on FOXNews.com quotes one commander as saying it’s “going to be ugly.”

Republican guest Kellyanne Conway almost seemed desperate to smear Murtha, even if she seemed ridiculous doing so. Ignoring Murtha’s 37 years of service in the Marines and more than 30 years as a Congressman, Conway called him “a man who’s trying to get more than 15 minutes of fame.” But smearing Murtha wasn’t enough for her. She also had to smear the John F. Kennedy Profile In Courage Award he had just received. “I actually feel so sorry for Jack Murtha because if he really was so courageous, he could have gotten this stupid Kennedy award…”

Alan Colmes interrupted to ask what was stupid about it.

“When Ted Kennedy’s there shaking someone’s hand, how courageous is it to be drunk and drive a woman off a bridge to her death?”

Colmes called that an “ad hominem remark that has nothing to do with what we’re talking about." Colmes added, "you ought to be ashamed of yourself.” He turned to the other guest, “Democratic strategist” Laura Schwartz.

Schwartz was another of those likeable, personable and well-spoken Democrats that FOX is always digging up (Marie Therese suspects FNC manufactures them in the basement) who rarely have the spunk to recognize and confront the aggression against their party. So Schwartz defended Murtha as an honorable man, who spoke truth to power and started a dialogue but she never addressed the viciousness, the inappropriateness, nor the obvious attempt to change the subject away from the substance of Murtha’s remarks.

Sean Hannity, who never served a day in the military, had the unmitigated gall to paint Murtha as a traitor. “The enemies that are plotting against our troops hear this.”

It seems like a no-brainer to me that Schwartz should have demanded Hannity explain how he became more expert at war strategy than a decorated war veteran who is also the ranking member and former chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. But the thought seemed not to have occurred to her. Instead, she politely waited her turn and answered the questions she was asked.

Conway, on the other hand, was aggressive from the outset and remained so. To Hannity’s comment about our enemies hearing Murtha’s comments, Conway added “And laughing. They’re giggling all the way.”

Hannity continued, “They’re justifying violence against our troops because US Congressmen are out there saying that, ‘Hey, American troops are killing civilians in cold blood.’” Hannity offered no proof of that assertion and Schwartz asked for none.

Conway chimed in, “And then receiving awards… I feel those people will be partly responsible for what happens in Iraq.”

Colmes started to wrap up the discussion by saying, “The point is that we’re putting people in untenable situations.” (which was the real substance of Murtha’s remarks)

Conway interrupted, “That’s what war is. We should all be focused on winning.”

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