Okay, a politician like Harry Reid is a polarizing figure. He makes some people very angry. Fine.

But when anyone — be it Harry Reid or one of his critics across the aisle — faces a random, personal tragedy, the American public can expect media commentators to remove their ideological boxing gloves and give that person a break.


Well, apparently not.

Two days after Reid's wife Landra was sent to the hospital with a broken neck and broken back after a car accident in which their daughter was also hurt, conservative blogger Dan Riehl took the golden opportunity of Reid's grief to say something so morally abhorrent and politically reprehensible.

So, in Riehl's own words:

If Democrats want so badly to abort babies because of (healthcare costs), why are we bothering with someone who has a broken neck and back at 69? It sounds to me like she’s pretty well used up and has probably been living off the taxpayers for plenty of years to begin with. Aren’t we at least going to get a vote on it?

It's possible that Riehl is trying to allude to the non-existent "death panels" made infamous by Sarah Palin. But if Riehl is attempting irony, it falls seriously flat. Writers across the Web have quickly denounced his statement that Reid "pull the plug" on his wife.

Come on, Harry - do your civic duty. The nation's broke and counting on you guy. Pull the plug and get back to work. And don't bill us for a full day today, either. This is no time to be sloughing off. Air freight her home, you can bury her during recess on your own time and dime. Or are you going to bill us for that, too?

Media Matters quickly linked to the blog and eviscerated Riehl for his statement. Riehl immediately responded with this little gem:

Well, that didn't take long for Media Mutters to link. I wish I knew those babies way back when. I'd have taken a coat hanger to them!

As pointed out by a political blog, it would be great if the mainstream media condemned Riehl and stonewalled him from ever participating in political commentary.

Maybe that will be the same day the national conversation returns to mutual respect and human decency. Until then, Riehl's blog will likely stay in business.