United States Senator during the 1950's. Began a personal crusade against communist agents in the US government, leading to highly publicised television trials of political and entertainment figures, blacklisting of people in these fields for involvement with left-wing organisations, and a general paranoia about Soviet infiltration of US life called the Red Scare.
McCarthy started the entire debate by caliming at a public meeting that he had a list of 137 'card-carrying Communist Party members' working in the State Department, which he waved at the shocked crowd ( This later turned out to be his laundry list.); The number changed over the next few months, during which time he and his aide Richard Nixon stirred up massive controversy over the matter. Finally, when McCarthy claimed that the US army was 'soft on Communists in its ranks', his momentum decreased as several talented legal speakers tore through the basic premises of his arguments.
His nickname was "Tail-gunner Joe", not beacuse he served this position while in the USAF in World War Two - He was in fact a radio operator - But because he was a homosexual.
Mjr. Frank Burns:"Hey, who drew fangs on my picture of senator McCarthy?"
Cpt. B.F.'Hawkeye' Pierce:"What do you mean 'drew'? Aren't they his own?"
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