With that notion in mind, I was startled this afternoon, when in a conversation with Chris Matthews on MSNBC's "Hardball," Democratic Senator-elect Claire McCaskill of Missouri, stated that she would consider confirming George W. Bush's contentious and slimy recess appointee, John Bolton, as United States' Ambassador to the United Nations.
To those of us who value the manner in which the United States is perceived globally, who have worked hard to restore our nation's credibility at home and throughout the world, such an action by a newly elected Democratic Senator is unconscionable and irresponsible.
Here is an excerpt of the conversation that took place today on "Hardball."
MATTHEWS: I have the first question for Senator-elect McCaskIll. Senator McCaskill, should the United States Senate confirm the nomination of John Bolton to the United Nations?
McCASKILL: Oh... yeah, probably. You know I haven't had a chance to review all of Mr. Bolton's record, but I'm a believer that the President has certain picks that he's entitled to as long as I'm convinced that they are serious about beginning work on diplomacy. Obviously that's been kind of AWOL in this administration... that emphasis on building alliances. Now is the time to remain committed to the United Nations, not to withdraw. I would want to get those assurances from Mr. Bolton and if he could give those assurances than I would probably be deferential to the President on this pick.
MATTHEWS: Why would a leopard change his stripes? What you just described is the opposite of John Bolton.
McCASKILL: I understand that that is kind of his reputation but this is about what policy he's implementing at the United Nations. If the President is supportive of the work of the United Nations and his appointee assures the Senate that he will be supportive of the President's support of the United Nations, then I would probably vote yes. But I'd have some tough questions to ask just like you ask.
MATTHEWS: But what do you think of neo-conservatives, the people who come into power and believe it's the job of the United States government not to protect this country, but their job, their mission, their messianic dream is to go around the world looking for governments they don't like and trying to democratize them by force and killing and blood and treasure, go into those countries, overturn the leadership and try to turn them into us. Do you think that's the kind of person you want representing us to the world?
McCASKILL: I think that is absolutely not what we want to be doing. I've said many times in the campaign you don't build democracy at the barrel of a gun. It has to come from the people that live in that country. Ours is a glorious democracy because it came from the people of this country and it has to come from internally within the nation. We are spreading ourselves way too thin militarily by trying to spread democracy at the barrel of a gun and we need to change course as it relates to that kind of policy.
Well, if Ms. McCaskill truly believes, "You don't build democracy at the barrel of a gun," why would she vote to send a pre-loaded barrel like Bolton to America's seat at the world's most visible table? Is McCaskill somehow unaware of the negative baggage John Bolton brings to the United Nations whenever he enters the building? A building he once vowed "one could lop off the top ten floors of and no one would know the difference"?
If our newly elected leaders are to change the image of the United States from an imperialist menace to a cooperative world partner, it is unfathomable that a responsible leader would elect John Bolton as emissary to the world's pre-eminent cooperative body.
As a patriotic American who has worked hard to change my nation from militaristic and imperialistic to cooperative and diplomatic, I call upon Senator-elect McCaskill to reconsider her leanings toward confirming John Bolton as United States' Ambassador to the United Nations. It is Senator McCaskill's responsibility to this nation to promote its cooperative efforts within the United Nations and throughout the world. It is not Senator McCaskill's charge to perpetuate America's bullying by endorsing a principal harbinger of the same American exceptionalism that has tarnished this nation in the eyes of the world!
I call upon my fellow patriots to ask Senator-elect McCaskill to vote against John Bolton as United States Ambassador to the United Nations. She may be reached by phone at: (816) 356-1659 and by email at email@example.com