I almost listed this under "Humor/Satire." The NY Times pronounces John Bolton's re-nomination to represent the United States at the United Nations DOA. See if you can pick up the amusing part of this otherwise sober report.
WASHINGTON, Nov. 10—President Bush has pledged to be a bipartisan, consensus builder now that Democrats are to control Congress, and since Wednesday he has made conciliatory gestures. The question now is whether Mr. Bush is ready to junk all of his make-nice pledges in order to keep John Bolton at the United Nations.
Officially, administration officials say they plan to make all the necessary calls to Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to try to talk them into confirming Mr. Bolton for a next term as ambassador. “He has been extraordinarily effective up there at the U.N., and now is not the time to have a gap,” said the State Department spokesman, Sean McCormack, repeating the official line.
But with Senator LIncoln Chafee’s announcement Thursday that he would deny Republicans on the committee the last vote needed to send Mr. Bolton’s nomination to the full Senate, some administration officials privately acknowledge that Mr. Bolton’s chances of getting Senate confirmation are “nil,” one State Department official said. “We know it’s not going to happen.”
In this situation, the usual next step would be for Mr. Bolton to withdraw from consideration and for Mr. Bush to nominate a less polarizing candidate—perhaps bringing Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad back from Baghdad; or turning to the State Department counselor, Philip D. Zelikow; the under secretary of state for Democracy and Global Affairs, Paula Dobriansky, or even Mr. Chafee himself, following his own re-election defeat. All those names have been floated both inside and outside the administration.
Let's leave aside the fact that Mr. Bolton has done an admirable job in his time at the UN, in pushing for institutional reforms and for forcefully articulating the US interest. Let's leave aside also that those opposing Mr. Bolton's appointment have no real reason to do so, other than to stick a finger in Mr. Bush's eye. Let's look instead at the laundry list of candidates the Times suggests instead. Lincoln Chafee? The guy who blocked Mr. Bolton in the first place, and plans to do so now, would be nominated if Bolton's nomination fails? The guy who is now saying - after the RNC sunk time, effort and money into supporting him during his primary challenge and then the recent election - that he may switch parties? Are they kidding?
In other news, the NY Times new name will be "National Lampoon's NY Times."