Jim DeMint is doing someone’s dirty work, but he’s not telling.

Yesterday DeMint blocked a motion to bring up the Democratic-sponsored bill that would provided subpoena power to President Obama’s proposed oil spill panel.

Twice DeMint stood to object, each time saying, “on behalf of other members of the Republican conference I object.” DeMint’s move created a testy exchange on the senate floor. The same bill passed the House of Representatives 420-1.

The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Jean Shaheen (D-NH), says DeMint is covering for senators who have something to hide. In a press conference after the DeMint blockade Shaheen said, “I have to conclude by the objections that there are colleagues on the other side that either don’t want to get to the bottom of this, or are standing on the side of the oil companies not on the side of victims and families.”

DeMint is totally the perfect guy to carry out this deed. South Carolina is to behind the scenes senate maneuvers as suburban New Jersey is to housing mafia families. 

Even in an election year DeMint has the perfect cover. For one, he’s a Republican running in South Carolina. While that is ample cover in the Palmetto State (see: Strom Thurmond), DeMint can just lay low as his Democratic opponent Alvin Greene has a tendency to struggle with lengthy sentences.  

So while Tony Soprano is a management consultant with Barone Sanitation who whacks enemies when need be, Jim DeMint is the Republican senator from South Carolina who is constantly reelected, while whacking unobjectionable legislation to protect senators with something to hide.

The difference between the two situations is clear: DeMint isn’t breaking the law. In fact, if DeMint and his Republican Dons have their way it won’t be against the law for senators or big oil executives or whomever to ignore the presidential investigation. After all, why show up if you haven’t been subpoenaed?  

Answer: Because you have nothing to hide.