Despite this, Democrats and diplomats are working in tandem to torpedo a superbly qualified candidate without a single critique on substance?and they might just get away with it. The media has largely withheld indignation when reporting that Senators are concerned that Bolton might be a ?bully.?
Since when has a group with less credibility on an issue ? this is akin to Fidel Castro vilifying someone as a ?pinko commie? ? been taken at face value?
Remember the Democrats? initial line of attack: we can?t send someone who says nasty things about the UN to the UN. That was a losing argument.
To the extent the public actually cares about the UN, they hate it. There is little defense of an institution that helped Saddam skim some $21 billion and includes on its human rights commission the likes of Cuba and Saudi Arabia, so their original tack got no traction.
But when they shifted to the ?mean? argument and made it repeatedly and loudly, the opposition finally started to jell. And the pliant press played along, absent any mention of the giant glass house sitting in the room.
Yet if everything alleged by Democrats is true, then, at worst, John Bolton is mean. The character assassination witnesses they?ve dragged out have been overt anti-Bush partisans, such as the head of Mothers Opposing Bush and Carl ?conservative to the core, but not too conservative to cut checks for Charlie Rangell and John Kerry? Ford.
As the Foreign Relations Committee takes up the Bolton nomination tomorrow, they need to carefully examine the credibility of each of his detractors.
The list of Bolton accusers includes the head of Mothers Opposing Bush (who is also a serial plagiarizer), a man who sided with someone later convicted of spying for Castro over Bolton on a question relating to Castro, and someone who had exactly one three-minute conversation with Bolton and bases over 90% of his opinion on gossip.
Although the Democratic case is flimsy, all they need is one Republican to flip?and they have three possible candidates: Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-NE), Sen. Lincoln Chafee (R-RI), and, of course, Sen. George Voinovich.
Joel Mowbray, who got his start with Townhall.com, is an award-winning investigative journalist, nationally-syndicated columnist and author of Dangerous Diplomacy: How the State Department Threatens America's Security.
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