It’s been a tough few weeks for Rep. Alan Grayson of Florida’s 8th District. First, Daniel Webster, former speaker of the Florida statehouse, entered the race as a potential opponent. Then the FEC ruled that mycongressmanisnuts.com, a site critical of Grayson, isn’t violating any rules. Now the Democrat is coming under fire for a financial connection to the Florida Tea Party.
With his national political prospects fading, it’s a good time to recognize the man’s greatest moments in Washington and on the airwaves:
1. Cheney is a vampire
“I have trouble listening to what he says sometimes, because of the blood that drips from his teeth while he’s talking,” Grayson said on the Chris Matthews show. “But my response is this: He’s just angry because the president doesn’t shoot old men in the face. But by the way, when he was done speaking, did he just then turn into a bat and fly away?”
Matthews, not exactly a right winger, couldn’t believe his ears: “Oh, god … We’ve got to keep a level here.”
2. Your endorsement could get my kids kidnapped
The Orlando Weekly retracted its endorsement of Grayson after he e-mailed a complaint about being described as a “millionaire Washington, D.C., attorney.”
“I’m not too thrilled with ‘millionaire,’ either, but at least that’s accurate,” he wrote. “If our home is burglarized or our children kidnapped, of course, then I’ll blame you for that. Thanks for the endorsement.”
3. Gas would be cheaper if President Bush had gone to “second base” with Saudi leader
Defending President Obama’s bow to the emperor of Japan, Grayson pointed out to Chris Matthews that Bush also made gestures to foreign leaders.
“I remember Bush Junior kissing Prince Abdullah on the cheek, and then holding his hand for an extended period of time,” he said. “Maybe if he’d let him get to second base, then gasoline would be a dollar a gallon.”
Oh, and he told Cheney to “STFU,” too.
4. The GOP health-care plan is simple — die quickly
On the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives, Grayson summarized his view of the Republican health-care plan, complete with a poster board display.
“Here it is, the Republicans’ health-care plan for America: don’t get sick,” he said. “If you get sick, America, the Republican health-care plan is this: Die quickly.”
5. Bernanke’s staff member is a “K Street whore”
On a syndicated talk show, Grayson vented about his knowledge of economics in comparison to a Federal Reserve adviser.
“Here I am, the only member of Congress who actually worked as an economist, and this lobbyist, this K Street whore, is trying to teach me about economics,” he said.
6. Satan may have written the intro to Cheney’s book
Grayson said Cheney was trying to use the spotlight to promote his book tour, but really, would he need to if he had the prince of darkness on his side?
“I wonder who’s doing the introduction to his book?” Grayson told Ed Schultz. “Maybe it’s Mephistopheles. Maybe it’s Satan.”
7. Palin is a migratory bird
After Palin made remarks critical of Grayson, he quipped in a campaign e-mail, “As the Knave’s horse says in Alice in Wonderland, ‘dogs will believe anything.'”
Then he called Palin with a migratory bird.
“Scientists are studying Sarah Palin’s travel between Alaska and Florida carefully. They hope to learn more about the flight patterns of that elusive migratory species, the wild Alaskan dingbat.”
8. Put drilling advocates in prison, along with GOP chairman
Grayson joked to a radio show about prosecuting drilling advocates who criticize Obama’s handling of the Gulf oil spill.
“How about just tracking down every single person that said, ‘drill baby drill,’ and putting them all in prison?” he said. “Starting with Michael Steele.”
9. Somalia is a Republican’s nirvana
In an e-mail about the book, “Over the Cliff: How the Election of Barack Obama Drove the American Right Insane,” Grayson suggested that Republicans hold Somalia as their philosophical ideal.
“The only law the right wing believes in is the Law of the Jungle. No schools, no hospitals, no job programs, no nothing,” he wrote. “Their idea of nirvana is Mogadishu.”
10. A bar argument … at Perkin’s
Grayson ran into a GOP gathering at an Orlando Perkin’s, and got into a shouting match with the meeting’s participants. Part of the argument apparently surrounded a Grayson statement that the Orange County GOP chairman, “could not find a $20 bill if it was sticking out of his butt.”
After the incident, in an interview on Fox News, one of the individuals Grayson cursed out called him “emotionally unstable.”