Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Democrats vs Condoleezza Rice

Like millions of other people, I watched some of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearings on Condoleezza Rice's nomination as Secretary of State. Only two of 18 senators voted against her--John Kerry and Barbara Boxer. Boxer in particular berated and belittled Rice, calling her dishonest and, in effect, a liar. Boxer was so bad that Jim Clancy, a CNN anchor known for his leftist sentiments, pointed out that Boxer had alerted the media to her coming attack to ensure good coverage and had used questionable facts out of context. In the end, I think Rice defended herself well.

To be fair, I guess this latest little Capitol Hill farce is President Bush's fault. He needs to be more realistic. After all, he only won the election with 51 percent of the popular vote, and he only got three million votes more than his opponent. Instead of acting like he's really the President and expecting the Senate, including Democrats, to defer to his cabinet nominations in accordance with tradition, he keeps nominating people who agree with him, like Rice. Why, the gall of the man! Look how much happier the Democrats would be if he had nominated Jumpin' Jack Holbrook for Secretary of State, Howlin' Howie Dean to replace a fired Donald Rumsfeld, and Red Ramsey Clark for Attorney General. But no, he has to keep proving that he's a divider, not a uniter.

Now it's reported that the Democrats are going to try to delay the vote on Rice's confirmation until next week, apparently determined not to do it on or near the President's inauguration. I guess this is the Democrats' version of "nyah, nyah, nyah." This kind of childishness is no surprise. The only real question I have is when are the Republicans going to start acting like the majority party in the Senate? They should hold the vote on Rice whenever they wish, and if the Democrats want to start whining and threatening a filibuster, let them do it. That will make it even more obvious that the Republican majority should modify the Senate rules to prevent filibusters on up-or-down votes on presidential nominees, which constitutionally require only a majority vote.


Blogger MaxedOutMama said...

Do I detect a trace of sarcasm? I enjoyed this post. I hope within a few months the Dems get down to dealing with problems instead of this sort of pettiness. If they would identify some particular problems and talk about solutions they would get good press on it.

The thing about Condi is that she's very tough. I haven't read the whole transcript, but she handles herself well under fire.

I don't know whether you ever read the Daily Kos, but he had a post up lamenting that the Dems lost to a guy like Bush, and adding that it was probably a good thing because a Kerry win would have been an "unmitigated disaster". No matter how often I read the post I couldn't figure out where he was coming from. He seemed to think obstruction was a good tactic!

6:37 PM, January 19, 2005  
Blogger Bowman said...

Oh please. If Kerry had become President, you would be giving two thumbs up to the GOP senator that grilled Kerry's choice for Sec. of State.

Boxer is playing by GOP rules: trash, trash, trash. That is why the GOP kicks ass and the Democrats get killed. If the Democrats actually woke up and realized politics is war, they might have a chance. Unfortunately Boxer is the exception to the rule.

But don't worry right-wing believers, the Democrats still have their head up their ass and will continue to lose elections for quite some time. This is assuming some miracle man or woman doesn't pop out from somewhere (like Clinton in 1992).

7:22 PM, January 19, 2005  
Blogger Gindy said...

I actually think John Kerry is hilarious. I don't know, but I don't think to many take him serious. I think Boxer just looks mean (to use a simplistic term). Either way, this stuff continues to hurt the Democrat party.

7:36 PM, January 19, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

MOM, I agree it would be nice if the Democrats would try being a responsible party in opposition rather than a bunch of whining obstructionists. As far as Kos is concerned, I know what you mean. Hard to follow him sometimes.

Gindy, Democrats have definitely been their own worst enemy the last few years. Just think: If they had been smart enough to nominate a substantial candidate and to avoid scumbags like Al Sharpton, they could have beaten Bush. And yeah, Kerry is ridiculously funny, if you can stay awake long enough to appreciate the humor.

Bowman, it's interesting that you, who have never met me and obviously haven't read some of my earlier posts, are so sure you know what I would do in the future under some set of hypothetical circumstances. And you also imply that I'm a "right-wing believer?" Read a bit further, especially Liberal or Conservative? and then tell me what you think. And by the way, you're always welcome, and I'll always appreciate your comments!

8:27 PM, January 19, 2005  
Blogger sygamel said...

Pacification of the Senate Dems is taking an awfully long time what with the very long memories of veteran Dem Senators of a majority era of periods past. Start working on some new ideas, fellas (and madames)!

9:29 PM, January 19, 2005  
Blogger Anselm said...

Why do so many dems think that the republicans fight dirty, but they don't? This all really started when John Tower was nominated for sec of defense and his former colleagues turned on him. He was borked before Bork! By the dems. And of course the republicans do the same, though I don't think as bad. Condi actually got off pretty easy compared to some. I don't like to see it done to either side. Unless there are serious issues (more than a nanny problem BTW), a president ought to get who he wants in cabinet posts, (and probably judges as well).

10:20 PM, January 19, 2005  
Blogger howard said...

I caught a bit of the most recent Rice appearance on television, though I caught quite a bit of last year's testimony before the 9/11 commission. Though I'm not especially a fan of her's, I think she did much better this time around, based on what I saw of it, and the transcripts I've skimmed through as well.

Incidentally, there's an entertaining little version of the Boxer-Rice exchange that I have just linked to -- just thought it was fairly humorous.

5:37 AM, January 20, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

h2, as I've said elsewhere, I have some concerns about Rice's ability to run the State Department, especially following on the heels of someone like Powell. State is a tough nut; not really like herding cats, more like trying to teach roaches to march. But Rice is smart and strong, and she'll probably do as well as anyone could.
That link is funny! But you let me down; I would have clicked it sooner if you had told me how much I would like it!

Scott and Anselm: Congressional republicans haven't always been paragons of political rationality, either. I'd like to see all of them behave better.

UPDATE: I just heard on CNNi how the Senate Democrats plan to prevent Rice from being confirmed today. They hope to drag the debate out until 7:00 pm or later, figuring at that point the Republicans will give it up so they can go party at the inaugural events. (Pow! Take that, you nasty 'publicans! HaHaHa! Nyah, nyah, nyah, nyah, NYAH NYAH!) Jeez.

6:39 AM, January 20, 2005  
Blogger sygamel said...

Not exactly what I was saying Tom, but I agree with you.

7:29 AM, January 20, 2005  
Blogger Tom Carter said...

Oops! Sorry, Scott. Now I've got it, and I agree.

7:43 AM, January 20, 2005  
Anonymous Brie said...

I believe that the republicans need to show the democrats whose boss...They should use the more abundant republicans to their advantage then letting the democratic minority wear the pants.

7:59 PM, March 12, 2005  

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