WASHINGTON, D.C. -- It all sounded too good to be true -- and now we know that it was. For a few days after the midterm elections, leaders of the new congressional majority talked as if they really wanted to work with the Bush administration for the common good. But like so much in Washington, it's now clear that was just hype.
In their first flush of victory, the idols of the American left scrambled to sound like reasonable, responsible legislators who recognized that our nation faces serious challenges. Speaker-to-be Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) initially described last week's vote as a mandate "to restore stability and bipartisanship" in Washington. Senate Majority Leader-in-waiting Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said, "The only way to move forward is with bipartisanship and openness, and to get some results ... I want to work with the president of the United States." Unfortunately, rhetoric has now surrendered to reality. Nothing has changed.
The "wake-up call" about how America's liberal icons will run the 110th Congress came late last week when the Bush administration urged that John Bolton -- currently serving a recess appointment as our ambassador to the United Nations -- be confirmed by the Senate. The suggestion had barely been uttered when Sen. Joseph Biden (D-Del.) announced that Bolton, despite admirable work trying to protect U.S. interests -- would be rejected. "I see no point in considering Bolton's nomination," he said.
Though Bolton says he still hopes for "a straight up or down vote on the Senate floor," lame duck Republicans on Capitol Hill have been acting like crippled chickens. When GOP leaders failed to rally to Bolton's cause, triumphal Democrats began floating the names of potential replacements. Among those deemed "acceptable" as U.N. emissaries: former Rep. Jim Leach of Iowa and former Democrat Sen. George Mitchell, both ardent supporters of the international body's globalist agenda.
Just to make sure Bush is getting the message about how stiff the opposition is -- and how rudderless his party has become -- the House of Representatives refused to vote on a trade bill that was all but assured a week ago. As a result, the president arrived in Vietnam for the Asian Economic Summit empty handed.
Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.