Tuesday, June 21, 2005

John Bolton and the Recess Appointment

I don't have many thoughts on John Bolton. I haven't followed the case too closely. All I've seen are the charges that he's less than diplomatic, let's say, and that he didn't really do too wonderfully at his former job (thanks to Mark Coffey of Decision '08 for the info). So having said all that, I really don't have an educated opinion on whether Bolton should be confirmed. My opinion is more of a knee-jerk reaction, and there's enough of that out there. You don't need to hear it from me.

But the prospect of a recess appointment is indeed interesting. Before anybody gets out there with Clinton references, let me say that I've only been paying attention to politics for a year and a half. I don't know how I would have reacted to Clinton's recess appointments, because I wasn't following things at the time.

That all having been said, I don't like the idea of recess appointments. They could be important in emergencies, but they seem more like sneaky ways to get controversial nominees in the door. There are obviously problems with Bolton, no matter how much the Congressional Republicans would like to say that it's all just Democratic obstructionism (click on a few of the links two posts down), and a recess appointment would put Bolton in place as the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. until December 2007. That's two and a half years from now.

I'd have less of a problem with a recess appointment if it only lasted until the next time the Senate was in town. But it lasts until the end of the session of Congress ends, and I don't quite understand why. Well, it's probably so that there's at least some continuity, even though the appointment's temporary, but I still don't really like it.