Richard Lugar Does Not Endorse Bolton in Opening Statement

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I’ve just heard — and read — the http://lugar.senate.gov/pressapp/record.cfm?id=259746“>official opening statement of Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Richard Lugar.
Perhaps its just Lugar’s genteel and judicious manner, but there is NO endorsement of John Bolton in his statement.
I have no doubt that Lugar will vote on Bolton’s side in the Committee, but I know from other sources that Lugar finds Bolton disagreeable, a bad example of diplomacy, and wishes he did not have to go through this process.
But there is no automotic embrace of the still uncomfirmed Ambassador Bolton by Senator Lugar.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

12 comments on “Richard Lugar Does Not Endorse Bolton in Opening Statement

  1. Johana Fox White says:

    Senator,
    Obama has just invoked your name as one of his advisors. If this is so, I am very disappointed in you as your name has always been very respected in our nation, as well as, our great state. Would you please respond.
    Thank you,
    Johana Fox White

    Reply

  2. Johana Fox White says:

    Senator,
    Obama has just invoked your name as one of his advisors. If this is so, I am very disappointed in you as your name has always been very respected in our nation, as well as, our great state. Would you please respond.
    Thank you,
    Johana Fox White

    Reply

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  7. NH Dem says:

    I agree with your sentiments, Zathras, but let’s not be unreasonably charitable. Let us call things as they are.
    Senator Richard Lugar is failing America, throwing away his honor, and betraying his oath of office by his unwillingness to speak truth to power.
    He is wise and knowledgeable and perceptive and thoughtful and sensible.
    And his cowardice and grossly misplaced sense of propriety render him an open-eyed enabler of the destruction of both America’s image in the world and its ability to change that world for the better.
    Mental reservations and private, muted words of dissent do not a statesman make, but a Speer.

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  9. Zathras says:

    There isn’t a better United States Senator or anyone in Congress for whom I have more respect than Richard Lugar.
    But he is no fighter. In his position as Foreign Relations Committee Chairman he has acted toward his President’s nominees as most of his predecessors did, supporting policies and nominees even when he disapproved of them in the understanding that only a President can really make foreign policy. No doubt his long rivalry with Jesse Helms — who took a very different view of the Chairman’s role, one that set any number of bad precedents — plays its part in Sen. Lugar’s doing his best to allow this President to conduct as coherent a foreign policy as he and his team are capable of. Lugar is not and will never be one to try to impose his views on an administration, for example by burying a prominent nominee the President clearly values and trusts. That is the kind of thing Jesse Helms did.
    The problem is that Lugar’s judgment on foreign policy is significantly better than Helms’ was, and greatly superior to that of the administration he is attempting to serve now. By conviction and temperament Lugar would never use the occasion of Bolton’s nomination to do what I would do in his place, oppose Bolton not because he has done anything particularly blameworthy in the last year but instead because we ought to be able to find someone better. This would amount to a punch in the nose to the administration — easy enough for me to recommend, since I don’t have Lugar’s responsibilities and have never thought highly of President Bush anyway.
    The fact remains that the only way for Lugar’s judgment about foreign affairs to have the influence it deserves would be for him to depart from the traditional, and under usual conditions very proper role of the Foreign Relations Committee Chairman. He would have to become a fighter. This is not a typical administration; you don’t get consulted unless you make ignoring you very painful. And the price the country pays when George Bush’s judgment rather than Richard Lugar’s determines the course of foreign policy is very high.
    Bolton’s nomination, unfortunate but hardly catastrophic, does not by itself represent the root of the problem. Lugar, though, could by blocking Bolton begin the process of imposing his will on the administration, to the extent that he would be at least consulted, in advance and in detail, on all major foreign policy issues and be deferred to on those about which he felt most strongly.
    This course would be out of character and deeply uncomfortable for Lugar, but it is what the country’s interest requires right now.

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  10. snortz says:

    Excuse me, but Lugar always does that shit, and then votes party line. Don’t listen to what he says, see how he votes.

    Reply

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