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December 03, 2008

Harry Reid whiffs

"My staff tells me not to say this, but I'm going to say it anyway. In the summer because of the heat and high humidity, you could literally smell the tourists coming into the Capitol. It may be descriptive but it's true."

-- Senator Harry Reid

Suppose that, instead of spending $621 million on a Capitol visitors' center, Congress had spent a fraction of that to weed out only the foulest smelling of the visitors....

Senator Harry Reid: When you come into the Capitol building, we will now have you go through not only the usual metal detector but also a new device I call a "smell detector." And I'd like to give you an idea how this works. Because body odors come in four varieties. For men, that is, anyway; women have five.

Our new smell detector focuses on odor from the armpits, which I find is the most pernicious of all the body odors. Have you ever sat on a transatlantic flight next to a guy who hasn't taken a shower in a couple of weeks? Possibly a Frenchman? He smells like your next door neighbor's septic tank after you've sabotaged it. You know what I'm talking about, because you dregs of society are exactly the kind of people who sabotage each other's septic tanks. We cherish cultural diversity around here, but it's possible to abuse the privilege. You can imagine what we feel like when our workplace is invaded by trailer trash like you who probably don't even have running water.

For the second type of body odor we have a breathalyzer that tests for bad breath, instead of alcohol. Because we don't really care whether you've just had a three-martini lunch, or in your case more likely a six-Bud chicken-wing snack that you're still belching your way through as I speak. Just so long as your breath doesn't stink the holy hell out of the Capitol. I mean, some visitors have breath so foul you could light it on fire. You, sir, over there. I can smell yours from up here.

The third type of body odor, of course, is from the feet. Some folks could kill a moose at 50 yards just by taking off their shoes. So we're going to make you take off yours when you go through the smell detector, just the same way you take off your shoes when you go through airport security. Have you ever noticed how bad it stinks at the security line? That's why we've hired TSA veterans to handle our smell security. If they can stand it at the airports, we can rely on them to stand it here.

The fourth type of body odor -- and I'm trying to be delicate about this, but I need to be blunt here -- is flatulence. My staff just took a survey of the half-mile radius of the Capitol, and there are 8 Mexican restaurants in this little neighborhood. You know, it's a little difficult for us to detect potential flatulence among our visitors, but we've figured out a way to profile for it. The profiling data come straight out of the torture rooms at Guantanamo and are highly classified. So for those people we determine are flatu-risks, we have anti-flatulence underwear that we're going to make you wear if you want to come in the Capitol building.

Last, we know that some women have a really nasty smell "down there." You can tell who they are by watching people passing out in their wake. But just to make sure, we have a crew of specially trained labrador retrievers who will poke their snouts between your legs to find the perpetrators. I'm sorry to have to inform you that if you fail this "lab" test, we can't let you in at all, because it'll take hours for our security to separate these animals from you. I'll probably have the feminists at my throat over this policy, but take my word for it. This is a matter of national security.