The public supported the actions of HUAC and McCarthy because they feared the spread of Communism. They believed the HUAC would keep communism out of Hollywood. They also believed all of McCarthy's lies. He told them he knew of 200 people in the State Department who were Communists. After hearing this, the people believed he could possibly stop the spread of Communism since he knew who the supporters were. McCarthy's accusations was originally targeted at Democrats who had been involved with New Deal policies in the 1930s. The finger was pointed at Harry S. Truman saying that he was "soft on communism". For this reason McCarthy was reelected. He became one of the most powerful men in the country by telling lies. Hundreds of peoples lives were ruined because of him.
In 1954, McCarthy accused the Army of having Communist spies. He took them for Senate hearings but this time his words were challenged.
Not only did the Army hold their ground and prove their point during the hearing, it was also televised so everyone who owned a television got a chance to see McCarthy's true colors shine through. The army proved that McCarthy just wanted to be in the lime light getting attention he didn't deserve.
Instead of seeing a leader, when they looked at McCarthy, the people now saw a bully. This televised trial began his downfall. The Republicans turned away taking the rest of the public with them. Soon after, the Senate condemned McCarthy. All of his lies had finally caught up with him.