On national television, an embattled Congressman kept cool, deflecting heated questions with tried-and-true GOP talking points and a shield of easygoing calm.


Rep. Pete Hoekstra has been widely criticized for sending a fundraising letter that cited a failed Christmas day airline bombing, politicizing the attack less than 72 hours after it happened.

Hoekstra, ranking Republican on the House Intelligence committee, declined to defend his Michigan Gubernatorial campaign fundraising tactics Sunday.

"Once upon a time, there was a tradition of solidarity and refraining from criticizing the president at the time the nation was under attack," ABC's Terry Moran told Hoekstra. "Three days after this attempt to kill 300 people over the skies of Detroit, you sent out a fundraising letter," said Moran.

"Given that tradition that once was part of this country are you proud of that -- of fund-raising off a national crisis like that?" he asked.

But Hoekstra dodged the question, referring to the Republican playbook by talking tough on terrorism instead. "I've been leading on national security for the last nine years. Over the last two to three months, I've been concerned about where the administration is taking us on national security issues," said Hoekstra.

Moran pressed the congressman. "But I'm asking about raising money off the attempted attack on 300 people three days after the attempt occurred?"

Hoekstra opted not to directly respond to the question. "I'm proud of the role of making sure America is safe. I've been right on the facts all along," replied Hoekstra.

Moran soon gave up. (For more analysis of Hoekstra's depraved fund-raising, see Rachel Maddow.)

This video is from ABC's This Week, broadcast Jan. 3, 2010.


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