Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Durbin Apologizes

Following his comments on the floor from last week, which I discussed earlier today, Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin this evening issued a tearful apology for his statements. Calling his historical allusions "a poor choice of words," Durbin said "I'm sorry if anything I said caused any offense or pain" to those who lived through the horrors of the Holocaust, and said he meant in no way to "cast a negative light on our fine men and women in the military. I never, ever intended any disrespect to them ..." His voice choking, he offered his "heartfelt apologies" to all those offended by his words.

Immediately after Durbin relinquished the floor, his apology received the McCain stamp of approval. McCain called Durbin's statement "a heartfelt statement, one of apology" and noted that just about every member of the Senate, including himself, has made statements in the past that they've needed to apologize for. McCain continued, saying of Durbin "He did the right thing, he did the courageous thing, and I believe we can put this issue behind us."

Other senators, including Lieberman, Feinstein, and Obama, followed Durbin's and McCain's statements with their own acknowledgements of his apology and the hope that the issue could be laid to rest. I agree with that sentiment. Let's get on with the business of governing and put aside these bouts of partisan bickering brought on by rampant zingerism.

(I will note, finally, that McCain's "Meet" prediction on Sunday was proven quite correct).

[Update: The AP now has a write-up of Durbin's statement. -- 6:27 p.m.]


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