Sen. Harry Reid: Playing politics with dead Marines, or misunderstood?

Some may have missed the remarks of Sen. Harry Reid on the floor of the Senate, discussing the deaths of Marines in a training accident in Hawthorne Nevada, and then discussing the Sequester. The office of Sen. Reid says that he is being taken out of context. At least one Marine Corps official, as reported by Jim Miklaszewski and Megyn Kelly among others in the press, believes Sen. Reid is playing politics on the backs of dead Marines.

So to be fair, here are the exact words of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, as he spoke them

Here is the exact transcript, as provided by Politico

“As I indicated, it was quite a big explosion. We’ll follow this news very closely. I will do whatever I can going forward to support the United States military and the families of the fallen Marines.

Mr. President, it’s very important we continue training our military, so important. But one of the things in sequester is we cut back in training and maintenance. That’s the way sequester was written. Now, the bill that’s on the floor, we hope to pass today helps that a little bit. At least in the next six months, it allows the military some degree of ability to move things around a little bit. Flexibility, we call it, and that’s good. But we have to be very vigilant. This sequester should go away. We have cut already huge amounts of money in deficit reduction. It’s just not appropriate, Mr. President, that our military can’t train and do the maintenance necessary.

These men and women, our Marines were training there in Hawthorne. And with this sequester, it’s going to cut back this stuff. I just hope everyone understands the sacrifices made by our military. They are significant, being away from home, away from families, away from their country.” – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid

What do you think?

As a former Marine, and as an American, I detest the use of any tragedy to military forces for the purpose of political gain. Such a ploy, to use the emotions of family and service members, to try to gain support of a political action that otherwise would negatively impact whichever political party is insulting and vile.

I believe, in hearing the full statement, in context, that Sen. Harry Reid was playing political gains. He was directly and purposively trying to garner support for Democrats with regard to the Sequester. He states, clearly

“These men and women, our Marines were training there in Hawthorne. And with this sequester, it’s going to cut back this stuff. I just hope everyone understands the sacrifices made by our military.”

How can that be misunderstood? How is that anything but using the accident as fodder for his political beliefs. Trying to manipulate dead Marines to gain favor over a Sequester that he created along with the rest of Congress and the President.

Some might say that a career politician since 1969, who never served a day in his life, cannot appreciate how servicemen and women, and their families, feel about being used as a pawn in political games. Some might say that were it not for the video, Sen. Harry Reid would have continued to play off the backs of dead Marines to obfuscate the inaction and failures of Congress, especially of the Senate. Some would say that Sen. Reid has no remorse since he won’t speak before the nation to apologize – which would make you wonder if the whole response so far hasn’t been written and approved by staffers and not Sen. Reid.

I, Michael Vass, am saying all these things. Further, I am telling Sen. Harry Reid, “Go do your job. If you can’t, or you need Marines to get it done for you, then step out of the way. If it takes Marines to represent the wishes of the State of Nevada, then Sen. Reid retire and let a living Marine get the job done the right way.”

As always, we look forward to your thoughts.


Michael Vass
President – M V Consulting, Inc.

About the Author

Michael Vass
Born in 1968, a political commentator for over a decade. Has traveled the U.S. and lived in Moscow and Tsblisi, A former stockbroker and 2014 Congressional candidate. Passionate about politics with emphasis on 1st and 2nd Amendments.

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