The latest incarnation of the New McCarthyism blew up in the Republicans' faces on the floor of the House last night.
The vote last night on the rule to bring the "Murtha Resolution" -- that's what the Shut Up and Clap Louder Crowd called it before they suddenly all started saying 'this isn't about one man' -- to a vote passed 210-202, but every Democratic representative voted nay. And 5 Republicans joined them.
The actual vote on the referendum itself (which was to end the occupation of Iraq immediately) was 403-3, with the nays carrying. John Murtha voted against it. Even Dennis Kucinich voted against it.
But the signature moment was the nasty attack on Murtha by Rep. Jean Schmidt -- the GOP House member with the least seniority, who managed to squeak past a decorated war veteran in a special election, who built herself a straw man in order to call another decorated war veteran a coward.
That said it all.
The Republicans went after the wrong Marine.
This has all the earmarks of a Karl Rove-Swift Boat-style smearjob. Hunter at Kos writes about Newsweek's Howard Fineman indicating precisely that.