Alex Wong, Getty Images (Jason ‘Is that an iPhone?’ Chaffetz)

I credit the Congressman with motivating me to become more involved in the political dialogue. He was the complete package. His collection of self-promotion, hypocrisy, hubris, misogyny, deception, self-righteousness, skilled politicization of tragedy, unabashed partisanship and utter disregard for oath of office raised (or lowered) the bar to nearly unprecedented levels. Much of today’s post comprises his own words. His stuff writes itself.

I can be nostalgic from time to time, so at the end I repeat some of the neologisms from prior posts.

Parenthetically, Chaffetz’s most significant political defeat was Hillary’s loss to Trump, pretty much removing him as the face of Fox News and seriously depleting purpose and meaning for him to remain in Congress. Stay tuned.

“I don’t know if it’s true but they tell me I’m only the fifth person in a hundred years to become chairman after three years.”

“Absolutely [I voted to cut funding from the U.S. embassy security budget]. Look, we have to make priorities and choices in this country. We have — think about this — 15,000 contractors in Iraq. We have more than 6,000 contractors, private army there for President Obama in Baghdad. And we’re talking about can we get two dozen or so people into Libya to help protect our forces? When you’re in tough economic times, you have to make difficult choices how to prioritize this.”

. . . .

“I’m out! I can no longer in good conscience endorse this person for president. It is some of the most abhorrent and offensive comments that you can possibly imagine. My wife and I, we have a 15 year old daughter, and if I can’t look her in the eye and tell her these things, I can’t endorse this person.”

. . . .

“Look, I think I went through a lot of gyrations that people in Utah and across the country [did]. I can’t imagine what the world would look like if Hillary Clinton were president right now. I mean — Blech.”

. . . .

After meeting with Trump in the Oval Office Chaffetz said The Don had instructed him not to raise the topic of “oversight“ — to which he admittedly replied “fair enough.”

. . . .

“President-elect Trump’s obligation is to comply with the laws on the books. It appears he is going to great lengths to be as responsible as possible and comply with those requirements.”

. . . .

“He seems to be acting prematurely at best, without doing investigation or thorough looks. He’s rendering opinions publicly that really cause you to scratch your head. We need the Office of Government Ethics to act ethically. Ironically, that’s not what they’re doing.”

. . . .

“He’s already rich. He’s very rich. I don’t think that he ran for this office to line his pockets even more. I just don’t see it like that.”

. . . .

“I don’t see how that affects the average American and their [sic] taxpayer dollars. Just the fact that a staff person’s family is making money? It’s not enough.”

. . . .

“Somebody’ll do something stupid at some point, and we’ll be all over it. I think the people who voted for Donald Trump went into it with eyes wide open. Everybody knew he was rich, everybody knew he had lots of different entanglements. . . . These other little intrigues about a wealthy family making money is a bit of a sideshow.”

. . . .

Questioning and then repeatedly interrupting Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards as she tried to answer, he flashed the following:

“In pink, that’s the reduction in the breast exams, and the red is the increase in the abortions. That’s what’s going on in your organization.”

His sleight-of-hand was easily discovered:

. . . .

“Americans have choices. And they’ve got to make a choice. And so maybe, rather than getting that new iPhone that they just love, and they want to go spend hundreds of dollars on that, maybe they should just invest in their own healthcare.”

. . . .

“If you’re going to empower someone with the nuclear codes, I think we should understand how healthy or unhealthy they [sic] might be.”

. . . .

“You’re really not going to like this part. The president under the law is exempt from the conflict of interests laws.”




verb, tran.

Morally abandoning another for whom one bears responsibility. “He chaffezed his 15-year-old daughter who has now filed an emancipation petition seeking termination of parental rights.”

verb, int.

Feigning moral outrage to accomplish an ulterior purpose or goal. “As a ruse to project moral superiority, he chaffetzed on all the news outlets about Trump’s grabbin’ em by the pussy.”



gerund or present participle


*My brother the fiction writer and novelist, Robert Hodgson Van Wagoner, deserves considerable credit for offering both substantive and technical suggestions to



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