Things can get wild in Congress from time to time. We’re not quite at the place where one member is going after another member with a cane, which was seen in the Senate in the 1800’s, but the verbal battles have dialed up a notch or two.
Matt Gaetz is a right-wing provocateur and a hypocrite. That much is well known.
But rarely has his hypocrisy been so perfectly delineated and explained than as by Eric Swalwell this morning.
This is a fantastic speech by Swalwell. Every word of it. https://t.co/5UeF5vZ9aT
— Ron Filipkowski 🇺🇦 (@RonFilipkowski) February 28, 2023
In 2019, Beekman allegedly shot and killed 33-year old Billy Buchanan inside a home in rural Mason County, Michigan, and was arrested by police after a lengthy standoff. He was later charged with murder, but his case still has not yet gone to trial, and he moved to Florida.
For Buchanan’s family, the pain of losing Billy has been compounded by the failure of his case to be resolved in court—and it was compounded even further by seeing his alleged killer appear in full military dress as an honored guest on Capitol Hill.
“It was like getting a dagger stuck in our heart again,” said Denita Buchanan, Billy’s mother.
“We were infuriated when we first saw it,” Hannah Buchanan, Billy’s niece, told The Daily Beast. “I was disgusted with the whole thing.”
After seeing Beekman leading the Pledge of Allegiance, the family swiftly reached out to Gaetz’s office—and it became clear the congressman’s office had failed to perform a basic background check on Beekman.
Gaetz later apologized and sent the family an American flag as a token of good will, what else could he do? But the main issue here is not just that instance, it’s the fact that Gaetz rushes full bore, like the bull in the china shop, motivated by owning the libs, as Swalwell points out, as opposed to being there to “get shit done.”
It’s good that Swalwell was willing to take hold of matters like this. Let’s hope other people in Congress feel sufficiently emboldened to follow his lead. The way things stand now, the right-wing performance artists act out and they’re ignored. Swalwell confronted Gaetz, rather than ignoring him. That’s a great start.
This was a breath of fresh air.