Diplomac: UN Ambassador - John R. Bolton: Senators on Sunday TV newstalk shows - Dodd, McConnell - and other voices & views
Fox News Channel's Chris Wallace interviews Sen. Christopher Doddd [D, Connecticut] and Sen. Mitch McConnell [R, Kentucky], July 31, 2005, segment on topic of John R. Bolton. Hi-lites & snippets:
WALLACE: Senator Dodd, it seems certain that this week the president is going to go around the Senate and make a recess appointment of John Bolton as U.N. ambassador.
What effect will that have, both in the Senate and at the U.N.?
DODD: Well, the U.N. -- my hope is the president would think a little longer about this. And I understand he feels a certain sense of loyalty, maybe, to Mr. Bolton (search). But he's got to be conscious of the fact this is a very important session coming up in September. We've got some major issues before the U.N., possibly Iran, possibly North Korea, certainly the meeting of the Security Council, the leaders coming together.
I just think Mr. Bolton's the bad choice here, and for all the reasons we've outlined earlier.
WALLACE: But, Senator, that argument is kind of over. I guess the question is -- it looks like he's going to be there. What impact do you think that will have on...
DODD: Well, I think a negative one, and that's my point. And I would hope the president would think a little longer about this from his perspective.
WALLACE: Why negative to have Bolton there?
DODD: He's damaged goods. This is a person who lacks credibility.
This will be the first U.N. ambassador since 1948 that we've ever sent there under a recess appointment. That's not what you want to send up, a person that doesn't have the confidence of the Congress, and so many people who have urged that he not be sent up to do that job.
WALLACE: But, Senator Dodd, we've done some research into this and it turns out that President Clinton made some 140 recess appointments...
MCCONNELL: Senator McConnell, isn't a recess appointment of Bolton -- and as we've pointed out, it's been done by presidents of both sides -- but isn't it going make the atmosphere in the Senate even more poisonous?
MCCONNELL: No, I don't think so.
I mean, typically senators who are not of the party of the president don't like recess appointments. I think Chris and I would both stipulate that. But, look, Bolton's been sort of twisting in the wind since March.
Chris [Wallace, the host/interviewer] mentioned all of the important things that are going to be happening at the U.N. in September. It's important to get an ambassador up there. If the president would have dropped Bolton and sent somebody else, there'd be no chance of getting him in place by September.
Bolton's exactly what the U.N. needs at this point. The president's right on the mark in picking him.
I'll give you an example. This issue that several of my colleagues are working on, with regard to the overspending on renovation of the U.N. building. Donald Trump's come down and said he'd basically donate his service to do it for $700 million and they want to borrow $1.2 billion to do it. But these are the kinds of things that have been going on up there for years.
MCCONNELL: We've finally got somebody who will go up there and challenge the establishment up there at the U.N., bring about the kind of reform that is needed.
You know, if the president recess-appoints John Bolton, I can understand why, because he's been waiting a long time to get the person that he believes is best to represent his administration at the U.N.
Some other info & spin:
Bolton's Abscess Appointment, Don Kraus and Sam Stein, TomPaine.com, July 29, 2005.
Bolton form failed to note interview in State inquiry, AP via Washington Times, July 29, 2005.
U.N. Nominee Omitted Data at Hearings in the Senate, by Elisabeth Bumiller, New York times, July 29, 2005.
- Collected by Owlie Scowlie