Senator Rand Paul’s toilets don’t work, and he blames the Department of Energy.

At a hearing of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources on Thursday, Mr. Paul lambasted Kathleen Hogan, deputy assistant secretary for energy efficiency at the Energy Department, telling her that the department’s “hypocrisy” and “busybody nature” has “restricted choices” for consumers rather than made life better for them.

“You don’t care about the consumer really,” Mr. Paul said. “Frankly, my toilets don’t work in my house, and I blame you.”

I’m so glad Kentuckians elected a self-accredited ophthalmologist to the U.S. Senate.

The topic at hand, for what it’s worth, had nothing to do with toilets. The hearing was about the Republican effort to protect energy-inefficient incandescent bulbs and efficiency standards for appliances.

Rand Paul, as part of the same hearing, transitioned from blaming the Obama administration for his toilet trouble to saying consumers face “fines and threats of jail” unless they comply with conservation efforts.

And in case that wasn’t quite enough, Paul then compared abortions to light bulbs, asking Hogan, the deputy assistant secretary for energy efficiency at the Energy Department, “I was wondering if you are pro-choice?”

When Hogan said she’s “pro-choice in light bulbs,” Paul replied, “You favor a woman’s right to abortion,” but “you’re really anti-choice on every other product.”

I remember when the United States Senate used to be described as “the world’s greatest deliberative body,” and “the world’s most exclusive club.” I don’t imagine we’ll be hearing those descriptions much anymore.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.