I doubt that Alan Grayson will ever win a Nobel Peace Prize. But he is winning the hearts of a lot of Democrats (like me) who have had it up to here with the politically correct presidency of Barack Obama. For months, Obama has endured the worst kinds of insults from “conservatives” without ever hitting back. He is the 95-pound kid who gets sand kicked in his face by the schoolyard bully and who doesn’t take a Charles Atlas course to get even (older readers will remember what I’m talking about; the rest of you can look it up.)
What does he do when some yahoo from South Carolina calls him a liar to his face? He looks disappointed and continues his address to the joint houses of Congress. What does he do when lies are heaped on lies to build a case against health care reform? He gives more speeches and provides patient explanations on his web site. You never hear an unkind word from the guy.
OK I have to admit that’s very … mature. He’s acting like a grownup being besieged by a pack of brats. But how I’ve longed for a big kid to come along and beat up the brats! And the big kid is here. He’s a brawler from the Bronx with the face of an Irish pug and the heart of a lion. His name is Alan Grayson, and he represents the Orlando area in Congress.
Grayson (photo at right) is certainly not politically correct. He grew up tenement tough and cleaned toilets to get through Harvard. You can look at his face and tell he’s taken a few to the chin in his time, and you can look in his eyes and tell he’s given as good as he’s taken.
It was Grayson who finally told the truth about the Republicans’ position on health care reform. It boils down to letting sick people die if they can’t pay for care, he pointed out. Offended, the Republicans demanded an apology, and Grayson apologized – to the 44,000 or more Americans who die every year because they can’t afford health insurance. Grayson added that the GOP should apologize to America, and he called them “knuckle-dragging neanderthals.”
It was Grayson who introduced the Pay for Performance Act, which caps executive pay for companies partially owned by taxpayers (through the bailout program).
And it was Grayson who introduced a bill to ban all fraudulent contractors from further government work after a pusillanimous Congress cut off funding to ACORN, scared to death by a crusade waged by Fox News clown Glenn Beck.
As a member of Congress, he joined Republican Ron Paul in demanding an audit of the Federal Reserve, that financial sacred cow everyone else seems so afraid of.
As a lawyer, he represented whistle blowers in suits against fraudulent government contractors. After the war in Iraq began, he persisted in pursuing such cases despite hostility from the Bush Administration. Congress called on him four times to testify about contractor fraud in Iraq. Taxpayers Against Fraud named him Lawyer of the Year.
Naturally, he is a prime target for Republicans in the next elections. And he knows it. But he stands his ground, ready for the fray. A multimillionaire who spent more than $2 million of his own money in 2008 to win his district, he is receiving a flood of donations from delighted Democrats who have someone to fight for them – at last.
A Huffington Post reader commented recently:
I love him. I love his mind. I love his tie. We’re raiding this weekend’s “Tailgate Fund” and sending the money to Rep. Grayson, and now that I’ve seen him with Rachael Maddow I’m going to send him whatever I get for the tickets too. Go Irish! Win one for Grayson!