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FOX Dredges Up "McKinney Probe"!

Reported by Marie Therese - June 6, 2006

Yesterday morning the FOX and Friends hosts did two separate reports on one of their favorite targets, Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, Democrat of Georgia. They noted that the case has gone nowhere in three months which, to them, seemed unfair to the Capitol Police officer involved. "Now, to many, this is a simple case of simple assault on a police officer," intoned Steve Doocy. "Normally, a person who is not a member of Congress would have been arrested on the site and would have had hell to pay." Co-hosts E. D. Hill and Tiki Barber laughed at this. Doocy continued, "Well, what's goin' on that it's ninety days and it appears to many, Tiki and E. D., as if somebody is draggin' their feet?"

Tiki Barber, hunky football-star-turned-FOX-News-front-man, jumped in to offer his opinion, noting that "in this case, Congressman (sic) McKinney obviously did something egregious. She upset the police balance on the Hill but because of the racial issue - she said she was racially profiled - this case has kinda gotten a little bit dicey and three months later, what should have, literally, taken a few days to resolve and whatever - gone through the court systems or gone through a settlement - has gone on for three months and now people are startin' to ask why."

E. D. Hill noted that the Capitol Police say that the federal prosecutor in the case is "politically motivated" and giving Ms. McKinney "preferential treatment" because she raised the issue of racial profiling. Hill continued, saying "But the other African-Americans who serve in Congress say that they have not had the same issues that she believes she has. Most of the legal experts - every one of the legal experts we've heard from - say it's as simple as you can get. Ya' hit a police officer, you're immediately arrested on felony charges. But the Capitol Police are frustrated because they say it's just sittin' in limbo." (Hill did not give the NAMES of the African-Americans who were the source of her statement or the NAME of the biased federal prosecutor.)

Steve Doocy noted that the Capitol Police believe this sends a message that "it's OK to punch a cop". Not to be outdone, Tiki Barber agreed with Doocy's comment, adding "Oh, it's OK to be entitled, to feel entitled, just because you're a Congressman of this country, but you're not."

E. D. Hill got in a little jab at Congress - "There's a lot of entitlement they seem to be feeling down there all over the place."

When Steve Doocy asked if the Congresswoman has finally started wearing her Congressional pin, since it was her refusal to wear it that caused Officer Paul McKenna to accost her in the Capitol Building. When McKenna touched her shoulder Congresswoman McKinney wheeled around and pushed her hand against his chest, leading to McKenna's filing assault charges against her.

To date I have been able to uncover very little about Officer McKenna, other than his name. There is one online reference a GySgt. Paul McKenna, who retired from the Marines in 2000. He worked as a part of the security team for the Presidential helicopters. But there is no confirmation that this is or isn't the same Paul McKenna.

DOOCY: "I wonder if today she wears the pin orif just everybody knows- yeah, here she comes! Don't stop her!"

HILL: "Well, that's what they had."

DOOCY: "I know it."

HILL: "They had a sign with her photo on it because she apparently had had some 'tude ..."

BARBER: "Altercations before."

HILL: "... before .."

BARBER (smiling broadly): "Yes."

HILL (laughing): "... and they said 'Make sure sure you know this woman'. She changed her hair. It's like (simulates defensive gesture with hands) "Oooh, here she comes!!'"

BARBER: "She used to have the dreds or the rows ..."

HILL: "The rows."

BARBER: "... and now she's let it blow out."

HILL: "Yeah. Looks nice. Anyway she changed her hairstyle and that's why they didn't recognize her."

VIDEO CLIP of a photo of McKinney with the new hairstyle.

DOOCY: "That one?"

HILL: "Yep. That's the one."


Aside from the fact that no Congressperson should have to submit an updated photo to the Capitol Police each time he or she changes their hairstyle, this segment was fraught with "code words" and summoned up the specter of the old racist canard tossed around as a truism when I was a child, namely, that all black people look alike. Hill and Doocy actually argued that Cynthia McKinney was unrecognizable as herself because she changed her hair and didn't look like the picture posted at the security check point! I was disappointed that Tiki Barber let them get away with it.

The source for this story was apparently an article published on officer.com.

In a burst of overwrought hyperbole, Jim Pasco, executive director of the National Fraternal Order of Police, made the following remarks.

"This is not the Manson murders, this is a simple assault case with numerous witnesses and the statement of a police officer. ... The only thing that distinguishes this case from cases all over the country every single day of the year was that the alleged perpetrator was a Congresswoman. ... If as a result of this foot dragging and lack of decisiveness on the part of the U.S. attorney's office Ms. McKinney gets off, it's going to have a chilling effect on rank-and-file law enforcement in the District of Columbia."

I think Mr. Pasco needs to take a sedative and breathe deeply.

What occurred between Ms. McKinney and Officer McKenna hardly comes up to the level of a misdemeanor let alone assault!

It seems that the Bush White House wants Ms. McKinney's story to be kept front and center. Expect more of this kind of Democrat trashing if Democrat Francine Busby trounces Republican Brian Billbray in today's special election in California's 50th Congressional District, whihc voted for Bush in the double digits in 2004 and has historically been a Republican stronghold.

In that event, the only weapons the Republicans will have left in their arsenal will be invented crimes, half truths and innuendo.

In the meantime, Ms. McKinney is still a Congresswoman, serving her constituents to the best of her ability. I wish her all the best.

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