The Right Opinion

Rice Falls Flat

By Rich Galen · Dec. 14, 2012

Article II, Section 2, paragraph 2 of the U.S. Constitution:

[The President] … shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors

One of the officials that requires Senate confirmation is the United States' Permanent Representative to the United Nations. As this person generally holds Ambassadorial rank the common shorthand is Ambassador to the U.N.

The person who currently holds that position is Susan E. Rice. Ambassador Rice was, as we say, “floated” as the next Secretary of State when the current Secretary, Hillary Clinton resigns – perhaps to prepare to deliver the next Jefferson-Jackson Day speech in Des Moines.

Ambassador Rice was sent out – hung out to dry – by President Obama in the aftermath of the Benghazi attacks when she said on a passel of Sunday shows that the attacks were the result of spontaneous demonstrations against the film that allegedly made fun of the Prophet Mohammed, which then escalated into a full-scale assault leading to the death of four Americans including the U.S. Ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens.

There are some in Washington who believe that in the run-up to the election the Obama Administration was very eager to make it clear that the President's foreign policy of combining non-confrontation with Islamic hardliners while whacking Al Qaeda officials by remote control aircraft was working.

A pre-planned, coordinated attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi when Ambassador Stevens happened to be there most certainly did not fit with that narrative.

Hence, Amb. Rice was given false statements which she dutifully delivered; again, and again, and again, and again, and again.

We don't yet know whether Amb. Rice thought what she was saying on those Sunday shows was horse hockey or not – and now we may never know – because she has withdrawn her name from consideration for the post of Secretary of State.

Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) led the anti-Rice charge. The President endorsed her at a post-election presser when he said:

“If Senator McCain and Senator Graham want to go after somebody, they should go after me. I'm happy to have that discussion with them. But for them to go after the U.N. ambassador? Who had nothing to do with Benghazi? To besmirch her reputation? It's outrageous.”

Yeah. Well, her reputation was besmirched (not a word you get to use every day) because of what the President's people told her to say, so this is all really on Obama; not McCain and Graham.

You could see the lines of attack being drawn on the sidewalk outside the Old Executive Office building: McCain and Graham are anti-woman. They are anti-African-American. They are certainly anti-African-American-woman.

The White House sent Ambassador Rice up to Capitol Hill in late November to try and make nice with the Senators.

It didn't work. In fact, it backfired.

If, following the meetings, they had restated their objections, McCain and Graham would not have swayed any of their colleagues. But, during her trip to Capitol Hill Amb. Rice met with Senator Susan Collins (R-ME). Sen. Collins is known as a moderate. Maybe the last Republican moderate in the Senate.

As reporters Scott Wong and Seung Min Kim wrote in their Politico.com piece, Collins is “just the type of moderate Republican who might help break a filibuster on a nomination.”

After a 75-minute meeting with Rice in the secure briefing room under the Capitol, Collins came away unimpressed:

“I don't understand why she would not at least qualify her response to that question.”

President Obama might have been able to force Susan Rice through the process with just McCain and Graham leading the opposition. But, whatever Rice said to Collins turned a Senator who should have been an ally into a detractor and it was obvious this was not going to succeed.

Susan Rice sent a letter to the President yesterday taking herself out of the running before she was ever officially in the running saying:

“The position of secretary of state should never be politicized … We cannot afford such an irresponsible distraction from the most pressing issues facing the American people.”

I don't remember Ambassador Rice leaping to John Bolton's defense when Senate Democrats refused, on purely political grounds, to confirm him for the U.N. post during the George W. Bush administration.

But, we know that Democrats oppose Republicans because of deeply held policy differences. Republicans oppose Democrats because Republicans politicize everything.

Sen. John Kerry will be confirmed as Secretary of State on a voice vote.

On the Secret Decoder Ring today: Links to the impressive bio of Susan Rice, to the Politico.com piece on her meeting with Sen. Collins, and to the text of her letter to the President.

Also an interesting Mullfoto from out my office window yesterday afternoon.

Copyright ©2012 Barrington Worldwide, LLC | Mullings.com

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7 Comments

Torp44 in Ione, Wa. said:

The thought of Kerry being our Secretary of Defense makes my blood boil!! Our idiot-in chief might as well apppoint Jane Fonda. What an insult to all Vitnam vets....and to all Americans for that matter!

Friday, December 14, 2012 at 11:51 AM

rippedchef in sc replied:

sec of state bro-yea it still sucks but at least a coward isn't calling shots for our military

Friday, December 14, 2012 at 1:39 PM

Wayne in Hinesville, GA said:

You cannot critizise any black in this country anymore without being called a racist. You also can't critize any woman without being called a woman hater. It doesn't matter if critizing them is warranted or not the outcome is still the same. Political correctness is the stupidest form of discrimination ever forced on the American public. It discriminates on people's right to insist that elected officials be honest and forthright in their dealings with the public. If you can't critizise without being called a racist or woman hater not many people are willing to be placed in those categories.

Friday, December 14, 2012 at 11:54 AM

Anton D Rehling in Olympia, WA replied:

That politically correct stuff is nothing but shots at the liberty of a free Republic by those intent on the transformation to a despotic tyranny. What do you do when someone is shooting at you, your family and posterity?

Friday, December 14, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Tad Petrie in Westerville, OH said:

Let's all have a Pity Party for Susan Rice, just another LIAR in an Administration of LIARS being led by the most BRAZEN LIAR to ever serve as President of The United States, Barack Hussein Obama! First of all I have a hard time believing that someone of Rice's rank DOESN'T have a security clearance that would give her access to ALL information regarding an attack on a US Consulate. If she DOESN'T have that high of a security clearance and she was kept totally in the dark about what really happened in Benghazi, then she was LIED TO and she just repeated the LIES. If that is the case, then why hasn’t she been telling the American people WHO LIED to her during her briefing and WHO ORDERED her to LIE to the American people?! If she KNEW what actually happened BEFORE she went on TV, then it is like I said before, she is just another LIAR in an Administration of LIARS and we need to to know which liar ORDERED her to go on TV and lie to the American people! These are the questions that the media is NOT ASKING! All I seem to hear these days is whining and crying from Obama sycophants like F. Chuck Todd of NBC News about how mean everyone has been to poor, put-upon, African-American female Susan Rice! 4 Americans DIED NEEDLESSLY in that attack, a LOT of people were injured, the President and the Secretary of State LIED to the American people, and all we hear about is how poor, put-upon, African-American female Susan Rice isn’t going to be Secretary of State because of mean, nasty conservatives!

Friday, December 14, 2012 at 1:37 PM

JAC in Texas replied:

Tad: You ask: "If that is the case, then why hasn’t she been telling the American people WHO LIED to her during her briefing and WHO ORDERED her to LIE to the American people?!" Odickhead, in several speeches after the incident, said repeatedly that Rice was "speaking for him" when she went on those news shows. Need we say more?

Friday, December 14, 2012 at 2:21 PM

rippedchef in sc said:

now if we can only get rid of that Valerie Jarret POS

Friday, December 14, 2012 at 1:41 PM