The Bangor Daily News editors hit one out of the park today in their article, “The File on Bolton,” outlining the compelling, overwhelming case against John Bolton’s confirmation.
Here is a key exerpt:
Never mind that John R. Bolton insults his subordinates; so did Lyndon Johnson and a lot of other public servants going all the way back to Theodore Roosevelt and John Adams. Never mind that he belittles and denigrates the United Nations, where he seeks to take a seat. Those attributes might even make Mr. Bolton an interesting and useful addition to an organization that can be stuffy and indecisive.
No, the case that members of the Senate, including Maine’s two moderate Republicans, Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins, should be considering is far more serious. And more is yet to come in the days before the vote, expected as soon as June 7.
The most damning evidence thus far is testimony by former colleagues that he pressured intelligence officials to change their official appraisals to conform to his views and tried to have some of them transferred when they disagreed with him.
Many of those who have worked with him in the State Department have come forward to warn that he would be a terrible American representative at the U.N. Although five former secretaries of state signed a letter backing the confirmation, Colin Powell, for whom Mr. Bolton worked, did not join that list. Mr. Powell is known to have advised several senators that Mr. Bolton is not the right person for the job.
Democrats stalled a scheduled vote last week on the ground that the White House had refused repeated requests for files bearing on Mr. Bolton’s efforts to punish officials who disagreed with his views on perceived threats by Cuba and Syria. Those files have been available to Mr. Bolton and the White House. They should be made available to members of the Senate and to the general public.
The article should be read in full. It’s tough to refute and must be causing some serious angst for Maine’s two Republican Senators.
— Steve Clemons