Senator Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) slayed during the Senate Intelligence Committee hearings, and (unsurprisingly) she's being chastised for her directness, both in the hearings and in the press. After a hearing filled with “I don’t recall” and “I’m unable to answer that” statements from Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Sen. Harris attempted to pin him down on his bullshit and pierce through his slow-rolling deflection. When, for the umpteenth time, Sessions invoked a “long-standing Department of Justice policy” that prevented him from commenting on private communications with President Trump, Sen. Harris called him out on his evasion.
“Is that policy in writing somewhere?” she asked. “Uh I - I think so,” Sessions dopily responded. Harris launched into him, “So did you not consult it before you came before this committee, knowing we would be asking you these questions and you would rely on that policy? Did you not ask your staff to show you the policy that would be the basis for your refusing to answer -” Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) attempted to speak over Harris stating, "Chairman, the witness should be allowed to answer the question." Chairman Richard Burr then asserted that he was the big dawg and was in control of the hearing and told Harris to let Sessions answer the question, which Sessions still managed to avoid doing. Of course. Look, Jeff Sessions, if you’re going to repeatedly use a policy to cover your ass, it seems like a decent idea to know some shit about said policy and be able to definitively say that it exists.
Harris previously got heat for trying to get a clear-cut answer out of Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein at a hearing less than a week before. At last week's incident, it was also Sen. John McCain who stepped in to coddle a powerful man trying to be a sneaky snake. Chairman Burr scolded Harris, "The committee is on notice to provide the witnesses the courtesy (of answering), which has not been extended all the way across."
It’s our classic lose-lose - women that aren’t direct are criticized for being weak and unable to keep up with the men, and women that are direct are, apparently, considered “hysterical” - a word former Trump campaign adviser Jason Miller used to describe Harris during a CNN panel with Anderson Cooper. Hold the fuck up. Hysterical? Not only is it a word that’s been used to disempower women (specifically) throughout history, but it also is an altogether inaccurate description of Sen. Harris’s questioning. USA Today columnist Kirsten Powers, also on the panel, wasn’t having it. She stepped in, "Can I just go back to something [Miller] said? How was Senator Harris ‘hysterical’? I don’t really understand that. I mean, she was asking some tough questions." "I think she was hysterical," Miller reinforced, "I don’t think that Senator Wyden was really trying to get to the bottom of answers either." "But he wasn’t hysterical, and she was," Powers pointed out. "OK, I just wanted to clear that up. Got it." Harris later posted a tweet defending her assertive questioning.
The silencing of Harris in the hearings echoes the attempted silencing of Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) in February who wanted to read a letter written by Coretta Scott King, the widow of Martin Luther King Jr., condemning Sessions for racism while he was serving in the Alabama state government. When addressing the prevention of Warren reading the letter, Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Kent.) issued a statement saying, "She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted." Cue the women’s movement, which considered the statement to be praise, an indication of strength and resistance against the patriarchy. Sen. Warren extended the words of resilience to Sen. Harris in a tweet with the hashtag #NeverthelessShePersisted.
The actions of Sen. Harris, Sen. Warren, and Kirsten Powers speak volumes and should be an inspiration for women everywhere. Not only do women have the right, and the responsibility, to speak up when confronted with bullshit, it’s imperative that we support other women who are doing the same. For the sake of the sisterhood and of the American people, we celebrate Kamala Harris and her unwillingness to let these bastards get her down.
Watch Sen. Kamala Harris get after Sessions like a badass in the video below:
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Hannah Rose, historically just Hannah, naturally tried to change her name upon moving to NYC from Austin, Texas (but keeps forgetting). Originally from North Katy, Texas - the wrong side of the tracks. Will defend Kanye until the day she dies. Batshit crazy. Overall bae.