Staff Columnist

Ignoring the rot

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley speaks during a press availability with Georgia Senator David Perdue and Iowa Senator Joni Ernst at Alliant Tower in Cedar Rapids on Friday, Oct. 14, 2016. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley speaks during a press availability with Georgia Senator David Perdue and Iowa Senator Joni Ernst at Alliant Tower in Cedar Rapids on Friday, Oct. 14, 2016. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

For 12 years, I lived in a rotting house. The smell of damp mold infected my clothes and hair. I scrubbed the basement walls with bleach once a month. I aired the house out once a week, even in the artic temperatures of the winter. Buckets of vinegar to mitigate the smell, oil diffusers, Febreeze, dryer sheets, scented candles—I used every product imaginable that promised to fix the smell. Sometimes you could ignore the damp must, but it was always there. Visitors politely pretended it wasn’t. But it was. I could smell it on myself during the day, running the kids to school or grocery shopping. In the rainy months, I’d wake up with migraines so bad I couldn’t see.

I did everything to stop the smell. Everything except leave the house.

This weekend, while America was caught in the turmoil of news story after news story about the president using the power of his office for personal gain and to attack his political opponents, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley was tweeting out sports scores. In the middle of the sports scores, he did take time to express his outrage, not about the president’s corruption. No. Rather he was mad Republicans were being cut out of the impeachment process. Writing in his distinctive sub-literate social media way, Grassley noted, “Why are House Democrats cutting House Republicans out of the process of developing Articles of Impeachment and not following same procedures used in Nixon and Clinton impeachments???? Seems like a political motivation not a constitutional one!!!”

Grassley was the chair of the Senate Judiciary while the crimes were happening. He was right there watching while the president abused power.

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Grassley was the chair of the Senate Judiciary from 2015 through 2018. He was right there watching while the president abused power. But on Monday, Grassley sent a letter asking the Department of Justice to investigate Hilary Clinton. That’s right, the White House is a rotting pit of mold and corruption, but Grassley’s still mad at a woman who lost the election.

Sen. Joni Ernst, who also apparently struggles with literacy, said last week that she hadn’t read the whistleblower report because she was busy. The report is eight pages, it’s her job to read it. I was able to read it over coffee while getting kids ready for school and loading the dishwasher. While Ernst still hasn’t gotten around to acknowledging the fact that impeachment is happening, as she was able to tweet out not one but two American flags.

In contrast, Iowa lawmakers last week were quick to glom onto the Carson King story. The now, fabled tale of a man trying to get beer money, who went viral, had racists tweets discovered, got cancelled, but quickly rose again as the poor victim of the “liberal media.” The delirium of that scandal was enough for even the governor to declare a Carson King Day on Saturday. Other things that happened this weekend that our Senators are ignoring, the revelation that aided by Pete Brownells the NRA worked as a foreign asset to Russia and that the White House used a secret system to hide transcripts of the president’s calls with foreign leaders.

Even if our Senators want to forget that the president abused power on their watch, with their permission, the stink of rot from the White House is too much to keep ignoring. No amount of tweets about the flag, ethanol, Busch Light or the liberal media is going to make us forget the smell.

For now, our Senators are frantically washing walls, opening windows, lighting candles, setting out oil diffusers, when truly, the only solution to a rotting house is to leave.

Comments: 319-398-8513; lyz.lenz@thegazette.com

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