It's not rare to have a breaking story of a politician doing something stupid, even career ending, but today we got a bonus. Two for one!
First up, Democratic Senate candidate Richard Blumenthal had to address a story that appeared in the NY Times. The Times points out that Blumenthal has repeatedly referenced his tour in Vietnam and his feelings and state of mind upon returning. The only problem is, he never went to Vietnam. Blumenthal characterized his statements as "mis-speaking". If you had never been in combat in Vietnam, wouldn't you catch that the second it came out of your mouth? Here's what makes this one uber-idiotic. Blumenthal was considered a shoe in for the Democrat nomination and was riding a 70% or so, approval rating. This was such an unnecessary "mis-speaking", it makes you wonder if he's brain dead or a sociopath.
Not to be outdone, Republican Representative from Indiana, Mark Souder, announced his retirement today. The family values candidate was caught having an affair with a staffer; the staffer that regularly drove him to interviews at the Christian radio station. Souder laments that he can't stay in the race due to the "toxic atmosphere" in Washington. Souder has been a full participant in said toxicity, being among the first to call for the ouster of Larry Craig, another lawmaker who had allegedly sought gay sex in a public restroom. Here's a clue for aspiring politicians. The public doesn't want you to stop dogging each other for your outrageous personal behavior. They want you to NOT ENGAGE IN OUTRAGEOUS PERSONAL BEHAVIOR.
The common retort from guys like this and their supporters is "I'm only human" or something like that. As if they just got caught doing something everyone secretly does. Another note to politicians; No we don't all cheat on our spouses. No, we don't all lie about our accomplishments. No, we don't all embezzle, cheat, steal, seduce teen-agers, take bribes or engage in unsolicited tickle fights with our employees. Don't project your personal flaws on the rest of us just to make yourself feel better. If you know you have no self-control, do everyone a favor and find another line of work.