Former senator Bob Packwood, who resigned 20 years ago over striking allegations by many women of sexual harassment and abuse, returned to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to testify at a hearing titled, “Getting to Yes…”
Now, the full title of the Senate Finance Committee hearing is “Getting to Yes on Tax Reform: What Lessons Can Congress Learn from the Tax Reform Act of 1986?” but considering the history, the turn of phrase is a little strange. Packwood was chairman of the panel in 1986.
The awkward name of the hearing aside, Packwood might not be the best witness for Republicans who constantly fight against claims of their “war on women.”
In fact, just mentioning Packwood made for an uncomfortable moment for Vice President Biden in September 2014. Speaking at a Democratic women’s conference, he named Packwood as an example of a politician who worked across party lines.
Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), in introducing Packwood and detailing his resume, called him a “great former leader.” He did not mention why Packwood left office.
Part of Packwood’s undoing was the Senate voting to subpoena his private diary, which included passages about his advances on various women.
Well, his diary apparently also held details of how he got tax reform passed. So he included those relevant diary entries in the written testimony he prepared for the Senate hearing.
Hopefully, he included all the right ones …