On Wednesday, the Senate Intelligence Committee was investigating whether President Donald Trump interfered in the ongoing investigation into the Russian involvement in the 2016 presidential election. During that time, Senator Kamala Harris had a short exchange with Richard Burr, the chair of the committee.
The exchange began when Harris was pressing Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein to “put in writing, an indication based on your authority as the acting attorney general that he [Special Prosecutor Robert Mueller] has full independence in regard to the investigations that are before him.”
“Are you willing or not willing to give him the authority to be fully independent of your ability, statutorily and legally, to fire him?
When Rosenstein would not give a “yes or no” answer as to whether or not he was willing to do that, as Harris pressed him to do during her questioning, Harris jumped in and asked if he was “willing to do as has been done before” before Burr interrupted her.
“Would the Senator suspend? The chair is going to exercise its right to allow the witness to answer the question,” Burr said, going on to tell Harris to “provide the witnesses the courtesy, which has not been extended, fully across, for questions to get answered.
Harris replied that she was simply worried that Rosenstein would try to filibuster, but Burr continued to talk over her and tell her to be quiet.
Of course, Twitter noticed the situation and its similarity to the treatment of another woman in the Senate, Elizabeth Warren, in which Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s line, “She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted,” has now become a rallying cry for feminism and empowerment.
It was easy to draw comparisons between the treatment of the two women, and that’s precisely what the internet did.