Last month Talking Points wrote a very high-minded column in the New York Post suggesting that Democrats turn over a new leaf in the increasingly acrimonious process of cabinet nomination hearings.
Why not ignore personal irrelevancies in a nominee's past and delve more deeply into the substance of their policy positions? This makes particular sense for George W. Bush's nominees since Bush has no real mandate to pursue a strong ideological agenda, and certainly no business doing so.
But Talking Points' admonitions have apparently been ignored. In the dingbat rules that govern official Washington, the fact that Linda Chavez had an illegal immigrant maid says more about her qualifications to be Labor Secretary than the fact that SHE DOESN'T BELIEVE IN THE MINIMUM WAGE - something which should on its face disqualify her.
But, hey, just because Talking Points is so high-minded doesn't mean he can't have some fun at Chavez's expense. So let's have at it â¦
When Chavez claimed that what looked like wages paid to her illegal immigrant maid were actually "individual acts of compassion" Talking Points was all ready to say that this gave a whole new meaning to that Bush bromide 'compassionate conservatism'.
Ahhhhâ¦ So that's what it means!
But, wait ... could there be something more sinister afoot here? Let's take Chavez at her word. She had an illegal immigrant who lived in her home and performed menial chores for Chavez's family. Yet the woman was not an employee and was paid no money for performing these tasks. Don't we have a word for this sort of arrangement? Forget the IRS or the INS. This sounds more like a violation of the 13th Amendment!
Does Linda Chavez have any ties to the Southern Partisan?