It was a herculean task to pick just 10 outrageous political stories from 2013, much less rank them. It was a true horserace, or more of a jackass race, to the top. So many of our esteemed public officials really just went out of their way to either tweet their privates, smoke some crack, grope a co-worker, tell us how fabulous ex-gays are, or just, you know, shut down the entire federal government. Of course, there were a lot of brave and well-meaning politicos in 2013 and indeed some proud moments as well. Remember Edie Windsor and the end of DOMA? Wendy Davis and her filibuster? They certainly deserve our gratitude and respect. But this post focuses on those less-than-proud moments staged by our favorite politicos we send to higher office.
In any case, judging from the list assembled here, either 2013 peaked at crazy or 2014 will prove to be a banner year for the bat-shit insane. Here goes … in descending order.
10. Congressman Randy Neugebauer Confronts Park Ranger
The Republican congressman told her that she, the park ranger, should be ashamed of herself for shutting down the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C., which was shut down due to the government shutdown. Yeah … it was all her. His party had nothing to do with it. For this ballsy bit of grandstanding, the congressman secures our 10th spot.
9. The IRS and the ‘Star Trek’ Training Video
To introduce a training session, several IRS employees put together this nauseating “Star Trek” parody. The worst part is that it cost us, the taxpayers, several thousand dollars to produce it. It is total fraud and abuse when the IRS puts on lavish conferences, as well as producing a similar ‘Gilligan’s Island’ parody. The total the IRS spent on conferences and videos was well over 10 million dollars. Let’s all take a moment to collectively roll our eyes.
8. The Values Voter Summit, Ex-Gays, and Fabulousness
First reported on by TheBlot, conservatives from across the nation assembled in Washington, DC, in October for the Values Voter Summit. One of my favorite moments comes from the American Family Association’s Sandy Rios, spokeswoman for the ex-gay movement. As seen in the clip below, she has a great back-and-forth with the crowd. Did you know that September was “Ex-Gay Awareness Month”? Yeah, neither did the crowd. She goes on to ask if anyone in the crowd knew any ex-gays. Surprise, they didn’t.
7. Did You Know That Fetuses Masturbate? And Other Reasons to Ban Abortion
Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas, naturally) told us in June that abortion should be banned as early as 15 weeks after conception because, as a doctor, he has seen male fetuses masturbate at that stage. “Watch a sonogram of a 15-week baby, and they have movements that are purposeful,” Burgess continued. “They stroke their face. If they’re a male baby, they may have their hand between their legs. If they feel pleasure, why is it so hard to think that they could feel pain?” Is there any science to the congressman’s statement? “We certainly can see a movement of a fetus during that time, but in terms of any knowledge about pleasure or pain — there are no data to assess,” says Jeanne Conry, president of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, a professional association for OB/GYNs. But since when has the GOP been interested in science?
6. Ted Cruz, the Federal Government Shutdown and Green Eggs and Ham
We could talk about the federal government and Senator Ted Cruz, but why bother? Let’s just watch him read “Green Eggs in Ham,” which he did during that stupid stunt of his in September of 2013. How Capra-esque.
5. Ken Cuccinelli Rally Opens with Anti-Semitic Joke and 4. Jim Bob Duggar Comes Out to Shine/Lose Election For Cuccinelli
For our fifth and fourth spots, I’m splitting them between Ken Cuccinelli and his big-time celebrity endorser, Jim Bob Duggar. This fall, Cuccinelli lost his bid for Virginia Governor. And frankly, it was a terrible campaign filled with eyebrow-raising moments, like when at a rally for Cuccinelli, a Virginia GOP official warmed up the crowd with an anti-Semitic joke.
And when things got really bad for the Cooch, he brought in Jim Bob Duggar, who gave this ringing endorsement:
3. Have You Been Molested by San Diego Mayor Bob Filner? If Not, You’re Just Not Trying Hard Enough
Sleazy mayors and mayoral wannabes take our top three slots. So let’s slow clap San Diego Mayor Bob Filner to the finish line. Toward the end of his tenure, over a dozen women accused the mayor of having molested them, one a great-grandmother. Classy.
2. No Matter How Bad Your Life Gets, Remember: You Are Not Anthony Weiner
His congressional career went down in flames after he sent a pic of his wiener to the whole world and tried to lie his way out of it. It then came out the he sent sexual pics and messages to women under the hilariously stupid handle “Carlos Danger.” All while his wife was pregnant. After all that, he tried a political comeback by running for mayor of New York. During that campaign, more sexting revelations came to light. Unsurprisingly, he lost the primary. But not before he was chased through a McDonald’s by reporters and he flipped them the bird. Stay classy, Anthony. Watch that here:
1. Rob Ford – a Guy We Couldn’t Make Up If We Tried
I have no comment here. We all know about this guy by now. But let’s just close with my favorite moment, when crack-smoking Toronto Mayor Rob Ford takes out a woman at a raucous Toronto city council meeting.