I wanted to write a hard-hitting post about Joe Biden’s selections for key foreign policy jobs — Antony Blinken (Secretary of State), Alejandro Mayorkas (Secretary of Homeland Security), and Avril Haines (Director of National Intelligence). Then I found out that three Republican Senators have already done the work.
According to the Washington Post, Sen. Tom Cotton called this collection “panda huggers who will only reinforce [Biden’s] instincts to go soft on China.”
Sen. Josh Hawley calls the three “a group of corporatists and war enthusiasts — and #BigTech sellouts.”
Sen. Marco Rubio gets the prize. He describes them “polite and orderly caretakers of America’s decline.”
All three nominees will be confirmed, however, unless they have skeletons in the closet. Sens. Mitt Romney and Susan Collins have already indicated they will vote to confirm Biden’s nominees if they are “mainstream.”
Sadly, Blinken, Mayorkas, and Haines swim in America’s contaminated foreign policy mainstream.
And in my view, the three probably should be confirmed. A president has the right to be served by those who share his views, however misguided those views are. That’s how it should work in a democracy.
However, because Democrats didn’t follow this principle in considering Trump’s cabinet nominees, I have no problem with any GOP Senator who votes against confirming a Biden nominee for reasons of ideology.
Finally, a few points in the Washington Post’s article deserve comment. Mike DeBonis, the partisan hack who wrote the story, says of Cotton, Hawley, and Rubio, that they “rarely, if ever, criticized the norm-shattering Trump and his revolving door of administration officials.”
I suppose that’s because they rarely, if ever, found Trump’s nominees objectionable. DeBonis points to no reason why any were objectionable (or appeared to be at the time of their nomination) from a conservative perspective.
The best DeBonis can do is to call Trump “norm-shattering.” Depending on what DeBonis means by that, the three Senators might well have considered it a feature, not a bug.
DeBonis also says this in the opening of his report:
Some Republican senators have publicly acknowledged Democrat Joe Biden is the president-elect. Others have moved straight to criticizing his early Cabinet picks, even as President Trump continues to dispute the outcome of the Nov. 3 election.
This passage is mindless. There is no inconsistency between Senators criticizing Biden’s and Trump disputing the outcome of the election. Indeed, there would be no inconsistency between Senators simultaneously criticizing Biden’s picks and disputing the election outcome.
Two things can be true: (1) Biden didn’t really win the election and (2) Biden is making bad cabinet selections.
Unfortunately, the evidence hasn’t established that Biden didn’t really win the election.