The Obvious: it eludes people.

The attacks on U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice are being advanced by Republican Senators who are allied with Senator John Kerry.  John McCain was widely rumored to have been asked to be Kerry’s running mate in 2004 Senator Lindsay Graham is an ally of Kerry on climate change, and Senator Kelly Ayotte is an ambitious pol from a neighboring state to Kerry’s who was probably brought on board to give the gentlemen cover from charges of sexism.  Notice how whenever McCain talks about Rice, he usually mentions that if Kerry were nominated for Secretary of State, his nomination would “sail through” a confirmation hearing.

Yes, GOP Senators are enjoying this opportunity to try to beat on President Obama, but the media have credulously fallen for the notion that this is a Republican hatchet job.  These senators appear to be working as Kerry’s advance guard in his bid for State.


16 thoughts on “The Obvious: it eludes people.

  1. Neither Kerry nor Rice fit into Hillary’s shoes. Congressman Markey will probably run for Kerry’s seat, if vacated, and will beat Brown like a drum.

    The real fight is on the safety net that Obama the socialist doesn’t particularly like. Let them beat up on him.


  2. I’m sure the boyz would obviously like to keep it in the Club, but I think Obama will nominate and get confirmed whoever he decides to go with. I doubt whether the Republicans will stage a knock-down/drag-out over a cabinet appointment at this point. They tried to get the Benghazi thing off the ground late in the campaign and didn’t get any lift at all. I would agree that Brown is not likely to win the rubber match of a hypothetical best two out of three Senate runs in Massachusetts. However that came out, it would be interesting to see Warren becoming the senior senator from the Commonwealth so quickly. I don’t know what that adds up to in terms of legislative clout, but I’m sure that Brown would have to stand on the table and sing his college alma mater, and carry the water buckets back from practice, like they do in the NFL, which would be pretty amusing. But here’s a bulletin: Thomas Friedman in the NYT today has proposed Arne Duncan for Secretary of State!! This would mean wailing and gnashing of teeth as well as standardized exams for diplomats and even consuls from Yangon to Montivideo. If that happens, I’m revoking my vote from November 6, but I doubt that it will.


  3. Pingback: AFT Prez Randi Weingarten, Russian Prez Vladimir Putin -- What's the Difference? - Tenured Radical - The Chronicle of Higher Education

  4. Indyanna–that’s what TR writes about in the trackback directly above. Because Randi Weingarten is in fact an authoritarian dictator and/or a warmonger.

    How little moxie women have to show before being compared to notorious male world leaders. (Godwin’s Law, anyone? Should we re-name it Friedman’s Law?)


  5. I hadn’t thought about the Kerry angle, and the cats missed it too. I’m sure indeed that Brown will run again, but it depends on who runs against him…. I think his brand is damaged, because he can no longer claim to be nice.

    And maybe Obama will surprise everyone. But if Rice gets the job, is State now a “woman’s job”? Since 1997, the only man to have held it would be Colin Powell. Think about that. Now, Defense is another story: a woman there?

    Oh, and the other day Joe Nocera in his column reorganizing the cabinet put Randi Weingarten in as Sec. of Education. Just noting…


  6. If State becomes once again, as it was in the days of the Early Republic, the stepping stone to the Presidency, then I suppose the gendering of State might not be such a bad thing! But, I’ve wondered about this too, and I have also wondered who or what it will take for a woman to be appointed to Defense.

    (Maybe we should just revert to calling it the War Department?)


  7. p.s. The more I see of the Susan Rice fracas, the more I’m convinced that this is a Dem ratfrack operation. Of course, the Rs are willing to play along in the hopes of retaking a Mass. senate seat, and in the hopes of embarrassing Obama.

    Kerry did pretty well in 2004 although he was a pretty bad candidate. He’s been a good soldier for the past 8 years. He backed Obama pretty early on in 2008, as I recall. I think he feels he is owed this, and he’s not going to let a good-girl functionary with few if any allies on the Hill stand in his way.


  8. The fact is Rice has been awful on Africa, particularly the Great Lakes Region of Congo, Rwanda, and Uganda. It may be feminist to support Rice in the US. But, the actions taken by Rice as US ambassador have been providing cover for Rwanda and Uganda whose armies and proxies have been brutally raping women in Congo since 1996. Likewise Rice has been involved in supporting the Rwandan and Ugandan intervention in Congo since this time when she was with the Clinton administration. In 1994 she was instrumental in the US not recognizing the slaughter in Rwanda as genocide because she thought it would hurt the Democrats in the mid-term elections. Her policies have quite literally been lethal for a lot of people in Africa. She has facilitated and provided diplomatic cover for the rape and murder of a very large number of Congolese women.


  9. “Her policies” are the policies of the administrations she has served. I don’t have a dog in this fight, but I don’t see pinning all of the blame on Rice for U.S. policies in Africa makes sense.

    (FYI, I am consistent. I thought it was stupid when as Obama campaign operatives Samantha Power and Susan Rice tried to blame all of the Bill Clinton administration’s policies on Hillary Clinton in 2008!)


  10. Great Post Historiann! (The obvious did elude me. Thanks for helping out the ‘differently clued’!)

    (Maybe we should just revert to calling it the War Department?) That would be lovely! Even better, lets aim for truth in advertising and call it the Department of Endless War.


  11. McCain is making himself look ridiculous on this, and so perhaps is Graham, but Kerry still seems amore distinguished and substantial candidate than Rice. The fact that some fantasized about McCain as Kerry’s running mate seems trivial, but Kerry’s standing with Graham on climate change seems like a real recommendation. rice is very loyal to the President and she’s a woman, but that’s not enough. Whereas Hillary Clinton has used her appointment to prove that she is Presidential material, Rice has not used hers to prove she can replace Clinton at State.


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