What Is A Kangaroo Court? Explaining Trump's Tweet
MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:
As Democrats and Congress go back and forth on the impeachment inquiry into President Trump's discussions with foreign leaders, the rhetoric has been intense and, at times, colorful.
AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:
Like yesterday, when on Twitter, President Trump compared the House committees looking into impeachment to a, quote, "compromised kangaroo court."
KELLY: Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz leaned into that metaphor - even took it a step further.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
MATT GAETZ: And Chairman Schiff is acting like a malicious Captain Kangaroo.
KELLY: In case you're too young to recall, "Captain Kangaroo" was a kids' TV show - started in the 1950s, ran almost 30 years.
(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "CAPTAIN KANGAROO")
UNIDENTIFIED PEOPLE: (Singing) Captain Kangaroo.
KELLY: Not to say that Captain Kangaroo never got political.
(SOUNDBITE OF TV SHOW, "CAPTAIN KANGAROO")
BOB KEESHAN: (As Captain Kangaroo) What's going on around here? Vote for Mr. Moose - for what?
UNIDENTIFIED ACTOR: (As character) For president.
KEESHAN: (As Captain Kangaroo) Surely not president of the United States.
COSMO ALLEGRETTI: (As Mr. Moose) Well, it's a free country. Why can't a moose be president?
CORNISH: But the problem is a kangaroo court doesn't refer to a legal proceeding presided over by Captain Kangaroo.
KELLY: No, it does not. The phrase, in fact, refers to a court that circumvents the law. It comes, most experts say, from the quick justice imposed on many rowdy Aussies in the California gold rush of 1849.
CORNISH: So put that in your pouch in case anyone ask. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.