Voices: Open your eyes, Republicans, or get ejected!

Rick Honeycutt, left, with Bill Kunkel and Maury Wills.

Editor’s note: Voices is a new occasional series in which guest writers  express their feelings in the wake of the presidential election and what many perceive to be a drastic change in course for America, and not for the better.


12243016_10153267305727683_1983256341329231651_nIn 1981, Maury Wills was manager of baseball’s Seattle Mariners. During a game, one of his pitchers, Rick Honeycutt, was found to have a thumbtack in his glove. The tack was there to scratch the surface of the baseball, which creates an advantage for a pitcher, and is against the rules. Honeycutt later said he only cheated on about three pitches, but umpires quickly noticed what Honeycutt called “the mark of Zorro” on the baseball.

After umpires checked his glove and found the tack, they ejected Honeycutt, and here is where Maury Wills comes into the story. With umpire Bill Kunkel holding the glove and tack as evidence, Wills took one look and said, “I don’t see anything,” at which point Kunkel ejected Wills, too. Some say it was for cheating, and some say it was just for arguing the point.

I tell you this story for this reason: Republicans in Congress have the Vladimir Putin-Donald Trump story falling into their laps, and there are several things they can do about it.

  • They can have a GOP-dominated committee investigate the matter, which — depending on the committee’s findings — will almost certainly be seen as a whitewash.
  • They can form a select committee in an attempt to get to the bottom of the issue in an even-handed fashion, and let the chips fall where they may.
  • They can slow-walk this into the new administration, then find that there is reason to impeach the new president. In my opinion, they’ll do the nation a favor, and they’ll still have Mike Pence as president, someone Republicans would probably be more comfortable with anyway.

But there is one thing they cannot do. They cannot say, “We don’t see anything.”

This election-tampering story has grown legs, and the Republican Party might think they can control it. Richard Nixon thought the same thing. Truth will find a way out, be it through investigation or through leaks to mainstream media that would like to redeem itself for (shall we say) a lackluster performance over the last two years.

This story absolutely, positively cannot be stopped.

Like Maury Wills, Republicans likely did not commit a foul themselves, but the U.S. intelligence community has found that Mr. Trump’s campaign was assisted by covert acts committed against Hillary Clinton and against the American public. There are strong suggestions that in addition to hacking of private e-mails from the Democrats, the Russians also hacked GOP computers and could now be holding material they might use to blackmail Republicans.

In other words, Mr. Trump’s administration might already be stained beyond redemption.

Republicans cannot simply decide to move on. Like Bill Kunkel, Americans are watching and waiting, and a GOP response of “We don’t see anything” should justifiably get them thrown out of the game.

Would you like to add your voice to the Voices series? My contact information is listed under the About Me link at the top of this page.

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