Yesterday’s House hearing on the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau apparently took a harsh turn, with Republican Rep. Patrick McHenry in particular accusing interim director (and liberal darling) Elizabeth Warren of lying to Congress. In the process he apparently wasn’t very nice, and online activists have started to return the favor.
McHenry’s Facebook page was quickly besieged by comments criticizing his words and motives, and I’ve heard rumors that his staff deleted at least some of the messages (defense of Fort McHenry indeed!), though as of this writing plenty are still being added. That’s all fun and games, but someone also set up a Citizens Against Patrick McHenry Facebook Page and an ActBlue fundraising page dedicated to raising money for his eventual opponent, though they’re only up to $85 so far.
Remember the revolutionary days of the Clinton War Room? Now rapid response is a potential tool for ANY political cause, not just a campaign or organization able to hire professional communicators. I’ve never quite understood the seemingly visceral hatred that some Republicans have for Warren and her agency-to-be, but in this case it seems to have left at least one congressmember slightly unhinged. I wonder how he feels about the response, and if he’ll pick his words more carefully next time. Unlikely: it’s too easy to dismiss critics as fools and ignore them completely. Though we’ll see if they can raise enough of a stink (and a big enough pile of cash) that McHenry can’t just wave them away like flies at a cook-out.