Senator Richard Durbin’s office has just released this statement which makes clear a long roster of reasons — all serious and substantive — to question and oppose the appointment of John Bolton as America’s Ambassador to the United Nations:
“At a time when we should be mending fences and strengthening old ties with our world neighbors, John Bolton is the wrong choice to help fulfill this critical job. Having John Bolton serve as the U.S. Ambassador to the UN is not in our nation’s diplomatic best interests.
“John Bolton openly and repeatedly demeaned the United Nations, worked against non-proliferation, abused the intelligence process and dangerously inflated assessments of weapons of mass destruction. He seems to reject the value of peacekeepers and their role in civil conflicts and undervalues the principle of international law itself.
“The Senate Foreign Relations Committee has explored the charges that Undersecretary of State Bolton abused the intelligence process by seeking to have those who dared to dissent removed. I find these charges to be disturbing especially since we will be living with the consequences of poor intelligence and unfounded allegations regarding Iraqi weapons of mass destruction for years to come.
“The United Nations is in need of reform, and the United States can be a positive influence in reshaping the UN for the 21st Century. Based on his long record, however, John Bolton is not the diplomat for the job. Americans deserve someone they can be proud of acting in this capacity.”
– U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin
Read that again:
“Americans deserve someone they can be proud of acting in this capacity.” Bolton does not have the confidence of the nation.
He should not be a part of a Bush administration 50%-plus-one strategy to get controversial nominees in key posts. The Ambassadorship to the United Nations is a uniquely important position and should be someone in whom the nation has fundamental confidence.
This is not the case with John Bolton.
— Steve Clemons