|2 December 1954
|The Army-McCarthy Hearings had so tarnished Joseph McCarthy’s public image that his critics in the U.S. Senate felt emboldened to renew their attacks on him. That summer Republican Ralph Flanders of Vermont introduced a resolution accusing the Wisconsin Senator of behaving in a manner “unbecoming of a member of the United States Senate,” and proposing that he be stripped of his committee appointments. Soon a new committee was formed to investigate these accusations, led by Senator Arthur Watkins of Utah.
During the next two months the Watkins Committee held hearings and deliberations on McCarthy, and finally concluded that he had "acted contrary to senatorial ethics and tended to bring the Senate into dishonor and disrepute, to obstruct the constitutional processes of the Senate, and to impair its dignity." In early November the Senate was called into special session to consider a motion of censure, and on December 2 that body voted 67-22 to “condemn” the Wisconsin Republican.
McCarthy’s political career never recovered from the blow. He had always been a heavy drinker, but after his censure he turned to alcohol more than ever before. His health deteriorated rapidly, and in 1957 he died of hepatitis.Link:
- Senate Resolution 301: Censure of Senator Joseph McCarthy (1954)