Wednesday, April 20, 2005

The Bolton Nomination

The nomination of John Bolton to be U.S. ambassador to the United Nations is in serious trouble. Yesterday, Senator George Voinovich of Ohio surprised his Republican colleagues on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee by announcing that, based on the arguments of Democratic Senators Joe Biden and Christopher Dodd, he was not prepared to support Bolton's confirmation. The vote scheduled for late yesterday afternoon, expected by both sides to be a straight party-line vote in favor of Bolton, was postponed until the first week in May.

Meanwhile, the Washington Post reports that SFRC staff members say they've been "inundated with allegations about Bolton" since Carl Ford testified against Bolton last week, calling him a "serial abuser."

The Post also reports that "on Monday, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice told her senior staff she was disappointed about the stream of allegations and said she did not want any information coming out of the department that could adversely affect the nomination." Isn't threatening subordinates whose views call into question the party line precisely why Bolton's nomination is in trouble? Punishing those who tell the truth is not the way to generate a sound foreign policy. That, I suppose, is one of the reasons why the Bush Administration does not have a sound foreign policy.