Mattera's confrontation with Reid pivots cranky senator to retirement

Journalist Jason Mattera shoved against the wall by Sen. Harry Reid (D-Nev.)'s protection detail. Mattera was asking Reid how he became a wealthy man as a public servant. (Video screen capture)

Former Human Events editor and the current brains and brawn behind The Daily Surge Jason Mattera is a fearless journalist–operating in a town where other journalists sprinkle fear on their morning Corn Flakes.


Mattera’s video of his confrontation with Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid (D.-Nev.) is an example of his taking on the people in power and asking what no one else will ask, face-to-face.

In the video, released to coincide with his new book “Crapitalism,” illustrates nicely how comfortable Reid and the Democrats have become basking in the warm glow a supportive press. When the goons in Reid’s protection detail rough up the reporter asking how Reid became a wealthy man, while spending his adult life as a public servant, the majority leader does not turn around to call off his dogs.

Rather, he keeps shuffling along, not even turning to see what the noise is about as one goon shoves Mattera up against a wall.

Oh, the alley where this took place? Actually, it was a hallway in the U.S. Capitol.

Reid gets his own chapter in the book, as do 26 others liberals like former Democratic Connecticut senator Christopher J. Dodd, who swung himself sweetheart mortgage deals, to current members of Congress, such as Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) and Rep. Greg W. Meeks (D.-N.Y.).

Watch Reid’s protection detail rough up Mattera:

Reid, of course, is like the Duke of Nevada,  a money-grubbing potentate, who will not die a poor man. Neither will his sons, Key and Rory, who may or may not be lobbyists–the paperwork is not really synched up with their actions.

Whether he was taking on Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., about his claim that Republicans wanted more rapes or asking Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano why she refuses to utter the phrase “Radical Islam,” or asking New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, an opponent of gun rights, if he will disarm his own security team, Mattera has created a bursting catalog of videoed confrontations that entertain today, but will inform historians in the future.


When historians put the pieces together as to why in January, Reid was overthrown as the leader of the Senate, they will be wise to cite Mattera’s video. For the Democratic grandees and mandarins already tiring of Reid’s act, watching the video was the Houston-We-Have-A-Problem moment.


Reid was a surprise choice to replace South Dakota’s Thomas A. Daschle as the leader of Democrats in the Senate. No one in Washington predicted that Daschle would lose to Republican Sen. John R. Thune by 4,000 votes in 2004.  At the time, Reid was sold as a pro-life, pro-gun Democrat, who would change to tone in Washington. Two years later, when the Democrats took the Senate, Reid chose another path.

During Reid’s tenure as the Majority Leader, he has abolished the filibuster for presidential nominees, eliminated the chamber’s tradition of an open amendment process and refused to bring more than 500 bills passed by the Republican-controlled House to the Senate floor.

While he nasty treatment of conservatives is well and good with Democrats and the Republican leadership, Reid has had to navigate waters hazarded by the personal ambitions of two others: Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin (D.-Ill.) and Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D.-N.Y.), the chairman of the Senate Democratic Policy and Communications Center.

Durbin as the Number 2 behind Reid has advantages of staff and input into Reid’s decisions. Because he is from Illinois, Durbin is considered a close and early ally of President Barack Obama, but this can be overstated since, almost until the moment he became president, Obama had little or no real influence in Illinois politics.


Working for or against Durbin is the feeling among Republican senators that despite his commitment the liberal agenda, Durbin is not a jerk. Unlike their dealing with Reid or the GOP leadership, conservative senators feel like they can deal with Durbin on a person-to-person level. A 70-year-old man with lobbyist wife, who works in a boutique earmark firm behind the Capitol, Durbin has to decide whether he is going to launch a rebellion or let the moment pass forever.

Schumer is a spry 64 years-old and he has been running to replace Reid from the moment Reid took the job. The New York senator was so sure Reid was going to lose in 2010 that in the last week of the campaign he donated $50,000 to Reid’s coffers.

In the last four years, no other Democratic senator has been more successful at fouling up the rudder and props of GOP senators. Most famously, Schumer tricked Sen. Marco A. Rubio (R.-Fla.) to front the president’s immigration bill and in an equally deft move, persuaded Sen. Patrick J. Toomey (R.-Pa.) to sponsor the president’s program to restrict gun rights. Remarkably, Rubio was on the fast-track for the 2016 presidential nomination and Toomey had taken over chairmanship of the Republican Study Committee, the chamber’s conservative bloc. After dealing with Schumer, both men’s careers have suffered.

Reid was able to push off challenges to his position with the promise that he would not seek reelection in 2016 because his wife is battling cancer. But, when Reid announced he was running for another term, all bets were off.


In January, there is still a chance that despite the efforts of the National Republican Senate Committee and its chief arsonist Brad Dayspring, that the Republicans will take over the Senate. If that is the case, it is almost certain that Reid will step away from the leadership and settle on a cozy committee assignment.

If Dayspring is successful and the Democrats keep the Senate, Reid is still a goner–but he is going to be pushed. When the time comes, whether it is Schumer or Durbin walking him out of his office, he may well look back at the day he did not look back to stop his thugs from slamming a reporter against the wall.

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