John McGee would have done himself a lot of good had he simply resigned from Senate leadership. I think somehow this situation has become worse, not better, because of the GOP Caucus meeting last week.
Here's why -
Now, every GOP Senator (perhaps every legislator) has somehow become wrapped in John’s cocoon - and the Senate Democrat Leadership sees this opportunity. As the press rolled out, following the “Caucus confidence vote”, I believe that it became apparent to a number of GOP senators that they were now perceived to be supporting John, and even comfortable with his behavior -- even though they are not. The idea of him "coming clean" to the press seemed like the appropriate thing to do, even after "what seemed like a seven-month avoidance of the media" (as Dee Sarton aptly noted). I've watched his interview 3 times and do not see clear and honest answers to many of the questions that Dee asked him. I just don't. He acknowledged Dee's questions and then softly answered according to what he wanted to say.
Very political. Very soothing. Just not honest answers to her honest questions.
Sen. McGee’s refusal to resign from the GOP Caucus Chairman position, despite the harm it is causing the State GOP and his colleagues in the Senate, is strong evidence that things are not as he would have us believe in his television appearances. Not release his medical records for that single night of Fathers Day when he he got so drunk while his children and wife waited on him? Really? Slippery slope? Really? Per diem issue? Really? Quite the cocoon, indeed.
Their refusal to demote him signals something else about the Senate Leadership, itself.
Leadership is not a title, it is a lifestyle of action designed to advance the collective good. John has demonstrated he does not understand that.
Genuine repentance almost always necessitates amends-making. His willful insistence upon retaining his title to the detriment of the Republican brand, to the detriment of his Republican colleagues (who MUST be, by now, receiving angry calls and emails) is just not consistent with any notion of honor or humility.
A Democrat colleague of Sen. McGee publicly stated that the recent actions by the GOP Senate have created a "culture of corruption" in the Idaho Senate.
The GOP Senate's Caucus confidence vote and subsequent leadership retention of Mr. McGee have now, instead, wrapped each other tightly together in a seemingly purposeful "cocoon of confusion" in plain sight, in front of those of us who voted for them, possibly mirroring the very GOP State Senate Leadership, itself.
My guess, though, is that there was a significant minority of senators who voted against John McGee.
This whole potential political disaster has "cocooned" the GOP because one man will not look past his own personal needs. Now that's NOT a slippery slope...but it just might be a sink hole for many in the Senate.
And the clock is ticking towards not only a 2012 May Primary Election and the November General Election but most importantly, an effective and efficient 2012 Legislative Session.