Friday, May 27, 2005

Bolton Delay

Senate Democrats forced a delay on Preznit Bush's United Nations Ambassador nominee, John Bolton, last night. The vote was 56-42 to extend debate on the Bolton nomination. Republicans needed 60 votes to end debate and send the nomination up for a final vote.

Why did Democrats extend debate on Bolton? From the Washington Post:

Democrats said they launched the delaying tactic only as a means of pressuring the Bush administration to provide documents related to Bolton's handling of classified information and his role in preparing congressional testimony about Syria in 2003. They rejected the administration's argument that some of the requested information is not relevant to the confirmation debate.

"We are not here to filibuster Bolton -- we are here to get information," Minority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) said on the floor shortly after the vote was taken. Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. (D-Del.), who led the opposition to Bolton, said: "I have absolutely no intention of preventing an up-or-down vote on Mr. Bolton."

Why do the Democrats want these documents turned over by the administration? For two reasons: 1. Democrats think Bolton may have misused classified National Security Agency intercepts relating to Syria and 2. Democrats and even some Republicans are sick of the administration telling them to go screw themselves when they request material relating to congressional business. Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Richard Lugar (R-Ind), Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn) and Ranking Member Joseph Biden (D- Del) all requested the material relating to the NSA intercepts. All of these requests were denied.

So why won't the administration turn over the requested information? Is it simply another case of administration arrogance or do the documents contain evidence that John Bolton misused classified intelligence for "personal reasons"? Given Bolton's habit of anatgonizing colleagues and underlings, these questions are important. If Bolton put the security of the United States at risk by misusing classified material, not only should he not be confirmed as UN ambassador, he should be prosecuted for breaking the law.

You know, the way Sandy Berger was charged with a crime for stuffing classified terror documents down his pants. Remember how much fun the Moonie Times and FOX had with that story? It's funny how the right-wing propaganda machine isn't up in arms over the Bolton thing though.

Gee, you don't think the right-wingers could be hypocritical or anything, do you?

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