Once again, it was a very surreal scene to see baseball hauled in front of Congress for the purposes of posturing about steroids. From where I sat in the Fox News Radio Studio, where host Dave Anthony and I were joined via phone by Jim Bouton, it was a pretty bad day for Roger Clemens. Andy Pettitte’s testimony stating that Clemens told him of his HGH use, the revelations that Clemens discussed HGH with Brian McNamee, who injected his wife, and Clemens’ potential tampering with a witness, the family nanny, who placed Clemens and family at the Jose Canseco house despite Clemens’ claims to have been playing golf — all of those things made the Rocket’s testimony look less than credible.
As for the Congressmen we saw parading in front of the cameras, if it’s true that we get the elected officials we deserve, then we as a nation must have befouled some giant ancient burial ground to bring forth the grandstanding morons of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Yesterday’s proceedings mostly followed a partisan line, with Democrats going after Clemens and Republicans attacking McNamee, the latter with a high degree of histrionics (Dan Burton, Darrell Issa, Virginia Foxx and my old nemesis Christopher Shays being the most egregious). Blech.
Clemens came into the hearings needing to cast doubt on the Mitchell Report, on Pettitte, and on McNamee, and at best, the proceedings raised credibility questions about the latter, demonstrating that he basically fits the profile of the kind of desperate schmuck who gets backed into corners like these (allusions to a Florida rape case, a fake diploma, a sick son, and a sudden desire to set things right for the youth of America so as to avoid jail time). But I don’t think Clemens got very far beyond that, and in fact created new problems for himself while dealing with the body blow of the Pettitte testimony and the revelations about his wife.
Furthermore, I don’t think one can rule out a Department of Justice perjury investigation versus Clemens, though I doubt there’s nearly enough to convict him. Meanwhile, there’s nothing to suggest McNamee is in danger of it being proven that he’s lying and thus in violation of his proffer agreement. If Clemens had just copped to HGH (and only HGH) a month ago like Pettitte did, this sordid saga would probably be over, and Clemens is a dolt for not recognizing that unless he was absolutely spotless he was gonna get hung out to dry. He’s gotten way more than he bargained for in his bid for vindication.
Anyway, I’m in the midst of a heavy load of radio appearances this morning. Catch me if you can:
WHAS Louisville, KY
WIMA Lima, OH
WRVA Richmond, VA
WHJJ Providence, RI
WTVN, Columbus OH
KOA Denver, CO
WOAI San Antonio, TX
WOC Davenport, IA
KFBK Sacramento, CA