Ken Connor

Colbert's invitation was not the first time an elected representative invited a celebrity to appear on Capitol Hill. It was, however, the first time a prominent celebrity satirist has been invited to testify, tongue firmly planted in cheek, based upon "experience" gained during a comedy sketch.

Does Chairwoman Lofgren honestly believe that Mr. Colbert's testimony was a wise expenditure of taxpayer dollars? Does she genuinely believe that it lent credibility to the cause of undocumented migrant farm workers or illumination to the immigration debate at large? Does she believe that hosting a Capitol Hill comedy hour is a better use of her time and position than, perhaps, scheduling hearings to investigate the ethics charges pending against two of her Democratic colleagues?

These are the kinds of questions on the minds many Americans this week - Americans who are tired of the arrogance and condescension of politicians so mired in the Beltway Bubble that they think nothing of dropping $125,000 on a televised dog-and-pony show that accomplishes nothing and makes a mockery of the American political process.

Was Colbert's testimony humorous? Sure. Was it appropriate? Absolutely not. Let no one accuse the American public of lacking a sense of humor. We know how to take a joke. When it comes to issues like the economy and national security, however, we'd just rather our elected officials not make jokes - literally - at our expense. Members of Congress please take note. Otherwise, come November, you may find that the joke's on you.


Ken Connor

Ken Connor is Chairman of the Center for a Just Society in Washington, DC.
 


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