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Wittman vs. Crabill
Rob Wittman's race: How blind is anger?

Date published: 6/4/2010

FOR SITTING members of Congress, 2010 is the year of running dangerously. That's especially true in low-turnout primary elections, which is why even a congressman as solid as Rob Wittman can't breathe easily until after next Tuesday. And that's not despite having an opponent like Catherine Crabill, but because of having such an opponent.

Even critics must concede that Mrs. Crabill--who appeals, as though by pheromones, to the newly swollen ranks of Washington-haters--speaks her mind, with no mush on the menu. She is a militant, spewing rhetorical lava, who vows to bring a little revolution into the corrupt world of an arrogant elite. When a left-wing woman talks that way, it's true, she gets a magazine named after her (we give you Mother Jones). However, conservatives who believe that they are defined more by temperament than temperature think Mrs. Crabill goes too far by a light-year when she rants, "We have the chance to fight this battle at the ballot box before we have to resort to the bullet box" and labels the federal government "domestic terrorists."

Those quotes are from earlier political contests. During her race against Mr. Wittman for the 1st District GOP nod she has turned her Bunsen burner of a tongue to low. Her website reads less like the manifesto of a Montana Militia-ette than of the typical whey-faced AM-radio Hun. But given a chance to retract those statements, she told The Washington Post that, though she opposes violence, "Those are my convictions."

They evidently comport with those of an immature local tea party that has endorsed her, evidently on the grounds (or maybe leaves?) that the otherwise very conservative Mr. Wittman lacks the sand to execute a citizen's arrest on Beltway officials who have violated their constitutional oaths, including (says her website) the occupant "of the highest Office in the land." Maybe if he hurries Mr. Wittman can Mirandize President Obama before Tuesday.

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