Over the weekend, there was some discussion of moving Bolton ahead of the judicial fight that is set to detonate perhaps as early as this week. Sen. George Allen, in particular, has been pressing to move Bolton’s nomination ahead of the judicial fight.
Regardless of where the Bolton nomination is placed in the schedule, it’s interesting to note that Boxer’s demands for releasing the hold were essentially drawn from the blogosphere, where former Clintonites, current State Department nonpoliticals, and congressional aides have been sharing rumors on the Bolton case, everything from spousal abuse to bestiality.
Boxer is demanding the release of eight, perhaps ten, classified NSA intercepts that contain U.S. names that Bolton reviewed as undersecretary of state for nuclear proliferation, the release of memos and drafts of a Bolton speech on Syria’s weapons programs, and, finally, a review of the employment of a Bolton staffer who also does outside consulting in foreign policy areas.
The employment of Matthew Freedman by Bolton has been especially popular online grist for the rumor mill. A blog associated with the New America Foundation has been pushing the Freedman story for weeks as the bombshell that could sink Bolton, though there is very little real evidence to bear that out.
A staffer for Boxer says that the Senator has been in talks with Sens. Joe Biden and Chris Dodd, both of whom had been pressing for the NSA intercepts, but that staffers had been working with a number of outside groups on the Bolton nomination. “We’re getting better at doing what the Republicans have been doing with their outside groups going back to the Clinton years,” says the staffer. “If you want to call it coordination, do that, but this about winning, and we’re tired of losing at every turn. The Bolton case has energized us a bit.”
As for timing of the vote, last Friday some Republicans were surprised when Sen. Allen publicly called for Bolton’s nomination to be taken up before the judges. “He’s only pushing because he senses that he might get a bit more attention than [Majority Leader Bill] Frist on the Bolton thing for a couple of days,” says a Republican Senate staffer for a western Senator. “Allen is running for President, and Frist is going to be the star of the show for the next few weeks with the judges coming to a head. Allen is just going to disappear.”
Allen, though, has earned props from conservatives and fellow Republican Senators for his aggressive pushback on the Foreign Relations Committee, something his chairman, Sen. Dick Lugar, seemed incapable of during the last month.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?