Hats off and a smart salute to Nation editor Katrina Vanden Heuvel for her blunt condemnation of Minnesota Republican Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann of Minnesota and her attempt to paint Barack Obama and other liberal legislators as somehow un-American. The debate happened earlier today on Chris Matthews‘ “Hardball” on MSNBC. Pat Buchanan also weighed in, didn’t agree with the anti-American statements, etc. But Vanden Huevel was beautiful.

Vanden Heuvel’s remarks: “Chris, I fear for my country. I think what we just heard is a congresswoman channeling Joe McCarthy, channeling a politics of fear and loathing and demonization and division and distraction. Not a single issue mentioned. This is a politics at a moment of extreme economic pain in this country that is incendiary, that is so debased, that I’m almost having a hard time breathing, because I think it’s very scary.
“Because this is a country I love, and this woman had no sense of the history of this nation, which is one of struggle, of trying to fulfill the great ideals of this nation, of movements that have brought about the civilizing advances of this country, and she doesn’t even know who Saul Alinsky is — a community organizer who channeled the views of the people from below.
“I think Barack Obama is going to win, and he’s going to have a lot of work because there is an extremism unleashed in this nation which you just heard on this program, which could lead to violence, and hatred, and toxicity. And against the backdrop of the Great Depression we’re living through, it could lead — and I don’t use this word lightly — to a kind of American fascism, which is against the great values of this nation, and which people like that are fermenting.”
A website gathering signatures to urge a Congressional censure of Bachman has been up since yesterday — 10,028 signatures as of Saturday morning.