When sexual misconduct allegations were made against Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill earlier this year and a number of my Republican friends immediately called for his resignation, I always felt they were making a mistake.
This was not to say that they should have dismissed the allegations against Hill outright, but I think they should have waited for the investigation to take its course before calling for Hill to resign his post.
Why? I have two words. Brett Kavanaugh.
The nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court has been accused of sexual assault and after a lot of political consternation, the FBI will take a closer look at the accusations and a decision regarding Judge Kavanaugh’s fate will be made accordingly.
I wish that would have happened here before folks started jumping the gun.
It would have been very easy for the GOP leadership to say, “we are aware of the allegations against the Attorney General. We find them very disturbing so we have turned them over to a third party for an investigation and will have more to say once it is finished.” Pretty simple stuff.
Unfortunately, we have a situation here where the calls for the resignation proceeded any call for a third-party investigation.
The Republicans are castigating Joe Donnelly for wanting an FBI investigation of the Kavanaugh allegations before making a decision, but with no investigation, Hill was put in front of political firing squad.
It has not gone unnoticed in political circles that the GOP is standing behind Kavanaugh, as well as Donald Trump, while Hill is cast aside. I was asked if I thought race had anything to do with it, my response was “no”. I’ve known the key players calling for Hill’s resignation for years and none of them have a racist bone in their bodies.
I do think this is more a result of political tensions between Hill and the Republican establishment on a variety of other issues which could have otherwise been avoided had one side been willing to talk less and another side being willing to listen more, but that’s another story for another time. (I see a Cheat Sheet item coming here.)
But for now, we get to wait for two reports, one from the FBI and one from the Inspector General. And I think the only thing more interesting than what the reports will say will the subsequent reactions. We’ll see if anyone gets this right on the second go around.