Sen. Joe McCarthy was a political figure who loomed large over the 1950s, waving his list (which he never showed anyone) of US State Department employees who, he alleged, were members of the Communist Party. He was eventually toppled when people grew tired and wary of his fear-mongering.
Today Communists have faded as a perceived threat to our national security. The Red Menace has been replaced by another faceless enemy, the Muslim fanatics who, some fear, are trying to infiltrate our country and our government and deprive of us our freedoms.
Leading the way is Minnesota's Rep. Michelle Bachmann, who is calling for a congressional investigation of members of the Muslim Brotherhood she claims have infiltrated our government and are working against us. Pressed to provide proof of her allegations, she named, among others, Huma Abedin, deputy chief of staff for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. She is a Muslim, but also a long time aide to Clinton and the wife of former U.S. Rep. Anthony Wiener, who is Jewish and a staunch supporter of Israel. Bachmann, in letters to the State Dept. and to Rep. Keith Ellison, a Muslim, says Abedin's late father (dead 20 years), her mother and her brother are connected to Muslim Brotherhood operatives. She knows this because foreign media report it.
Bachmann's attacks led Sen. John McCain and others to defend Abedin. On the Senate floor, McCain criticized those who launches "specious and degrading attacks" on someone's character and patriotism.
The beginning of the end for Sen. McCarthy was during the Army-McCarthy hearings, when US Army counsel Joseph Welch asked McCarthy, who had just accused a young Welch aide of being a Communist, "Have you no sense of decency sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?"
Bachmann has accused untold members of Congress, among others, of being unAmerican. It appears McCain and others are beginning to ask her, "Have you left no sense of decency?"