Sunday, June 04, 2006

Only Later Do We Learn that John Bolton Is Not Alone

John Bolton, it turns out, is not alone. You probably didn't know about it — because the MSM didn't make a big deal about it (pointing it out might have made the president's adversaries look not only like partisans but like partisans going overboard) — but Bolton was not the only ambassador to have his nomination held up for months in the Foreign Relations Committee, giving Bush little choice but to use his presidential power to install his nominee through a "recess appointment".

Indeed, we learn in Dan Bilefsky and Brian Knowlton's article on "Bush's unlikely bridge-builder to the EU" that C. Boyden Gray, America's lanky new ambassador to the European Union,
has been a leader of the Committee for Justice, a conservative lobbying group that has fought to clear the way for the judicial appointments of the President George W. Bush.

In that role, Gray raised millions of dollars and helped engineer ads attacking Democrats' attempts to block socially conservative judges, including Roman Catholics. One ad superimposed a sign on a courthouse that read, "Catholics Need Not Apply."

That lobbying so angered Democratic senators that they held up [Eeyore's] nomination as ambassador for months in the Foreign Relations Committee. Finally, Bush used his power to install Gray through a "recess appointment," while the Senate was out of town.

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