Another Obama appointee scandal?

posted at 10:13 am on March 31, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Barack Obama really knows how to pick quiet appointments, doesn’t he?  The New York Times recalls that his choice for Secretary of the Navy, former Mississippi governor Ray Mabus, created a national scandal during his divorce a few years ago by surreptitiously taping a marital-counseling session conducted by his minister and playing it in court.  His wife later sued the church, and is appealing the dismissal:

President Obama’s nominee for secretary of the Navy was involved in a divorce that drew national attention for his secret taping of a conversation between his wife and his family priest that he used against her in court proceedings.

The nominee, Ray Mabus, is a former governor of Mississippi and a former ambassador to Saudi Arabia, and he served in the Navy during the Vietnam War. Mr. Mabus, a Democrat, was a strong supporter of Mr. Obama in the campaign last year.

In 1998, as Mr. Mabus and his wife, Julie (now Julie Hines), sought to work out their marital problems, he surreptitiously recorded a meeting the couple had with the Rev. Jerry McBride, a mutual friend.

Mr. Mabus had told Mr. McBride in advance that he had been advised by a lawyer to tape the conversation, according to court records. Neither man mentioned the recording to Ms. Hines. During the session, she admitted having an affair and told her husband, “I will hate you till the day I die, and I will tell my children.”

An expert psychiatric witness for Mr. Mabus referred to Ms. Hines’s recorded comments as evidence that he should get legal custody of the couple’s two daughters. The judge in the case awarded legal custody to Mr. Mabus and split physical custody between him and Ms. Hines.

Hines didn’t keep quiet about it.  She conducted a media tour in 2002 to discuss the implications for privacy.  And she has a point, at least regarding the church; the minister’s decision to play along with Mabus in that instance is a fairly stark betrayal, even if it isn’t actionable under the law, which the Mississippi Supreme Court still has to determine.

However colorful this may be for Mabus, I don’t think it’s material to his appointment.  People do strange and embarrassing things in divorces, just as they say terrible things to each other in marital counseling sessions (which is why McBride should be ashamed of his role in this situation).  It’s not even in the same league as Tim Geithner’s tax evasion, or Bill Richardson’s pay-for-play scandal, or even Vivek Kundra’s theft conviction.  It didn’t break the law, and it didn’t have anything to do with Mabus’ conduct on the job.  That makes it, in my mind, a non-issue.

Mississippi Senators Roger Wicker and Thad Cochran, both Republicans, say they support Mabus and will see him through to confirmation.  Unless something else arises that shows Mabus engaged in illegal or corrupt conduct, that’s the right decision.


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well er uh “hey look over there a CEO severance”….

sven10077 on March 31, 2009 at 10:17 AM

It seems like one has to be corrupt to rise in the ranks of the Donkey Party.

jgapinoy on March 31, 2009 at 10:17 AM

Leave that one alone. But I’d still give it a 3 out of 10 for “hmmm, not another!?”

kirkill on March 31, 2009 at 10:18 AM

The guy’s a Dick. One thing the Navy doesn’t need is more Dick.

john1schn on March 31, 2009 at 10:20 AM

This is the name of the guy in the Nostradamus thingy. Mabus. Just a little trivia for you. : )

capitalist piglet on March 31, 2009 at 10:20 AM

The minister should be tossed to the curb. Unless there was a danger to the children that needed to be exposed (abuse, incest) the minister should not have pretended to “help” the couple so his buddy could set up the wife. Wrong, wrong, wrong. It goes to character, which doesn’t matter in the Dem’s world.

Laura in Maryland on March 31, 2009 at 10:21 AM

We’ve lost some good Republican candiates to things that have been released about their divorces, so there is part of me that wants to be sympathetic and let it go and another part of me that thinks that turn-about is fair play.

The only thing that seems relavent is that the dude took bad advice during a legal proceeding. Does he even know the difference between good and bad advice?

myrenovations on March 31, 2009 at 10:21 AM

It didn’t break the law, and it didn’t have anything to do with Mabus’ conduct on the job. That makes it, in my mind, a non-issue.

So character does not matter?

Johan Klaus on March 31, 2009 at 10:21 AM

NIXONIAN

stormin1961 on March 31, 2009 at 10:22 AM

What should we expect? Obama crawled out of a cauldron of crooks and all of his buddies and friends slithered their way out of the same pot.

rplat on March 31, 2009 at 10:23 AM

Let’s see. Who does this remind me of?
Oh yeah, Linda Tripp and Newt Gingrich.

Brat on March 31, 2009 at 10:24 AM

isn’t it against some federal law to take someone without their permission over the phone without a warrant. and yeah, i know this isn’t a federal issue & i know that this wasn’t over the phone, but it looks bad.

kelley in virginia on March 31, 2009 at 10:24 AM

I don’t think it’s material to his appointment. People do strange and embarrassing things in divorces, just as they say terrible things to each other in marital counseling sessions

What people do under stressful situations is highly material to appointments of people to positions of power. I’m hard pressed to think of anything more material.

TheBigOldDog on March 31, 2009 at 10:24 AM

Nasty details aside, doesn’t this show an inclination to lose control and resort to desperate measures during heated battle?

sherry on March 31, 2009 at 10:24 AM

The only thing that seems relavent is that the dude took bad advice during a legal proceeding. Does he even know the difference between good and bad advice?

Taping a conversation between anyone and a priest is clearly a big no-no. What this shows is that he has no conscience and is a sleazebag. In other words, a perfect Dem.

strictnein on March 31, 2009 at 10:25 AM

It’s a violation of what is considered a religious compact between a minister and their parishioner … and therefore will not seem like a bit of a problem to the folks covering Obama in the D.C. media. That doesn’t mean Mabus can’t run into some problems during confirmation questioning, just that if this is going to be a problem for the president, it’s not going to be because people inside the Beltway are offended over abrogating a religious trust.

jon1979 on March 31, 2009 at 10:25 AM

Question 63 in the Obama Application Questionnaire: Please provide any other information, including information about other members of you family, that could suggest a conflict of interest or be a possible source of embarrassment to you, your family of or the president-elect. This pretty much sizes up every Obama appointee.

Tommy_G on March 31, 2009 at 10:27 AM

The nominee, Ray Mabus, is a former governor of Mississippi and a former ambassador to Saudi Arabia, and he served in the Navy during the Vietnam War. Mr. Mabus, a Democrat, was a strong supporter of Mr. Obama in the campaign last year.

It says he was a strong supporter of Obama’s during the campaign. How much money did he raise and from whom?

zmdavid on March 31, 2009 at 10:27 AM

“surreptitiously recorded”

Well, someone with this type of experience should fit right in with this administration.

garry on March 31, 2009 at 10:31 AM

Agree that it’s not and shouldn’t be a ‘scandal’

non story.

bridgetown on March 31, 2009 at 10:31 AM

Nasty details aside, doesn’t this show an inclination to lose control and resort to desperate measures during heated battle?

sherry on March 31, 2009 at 10:24 AM

Actualy, he sounds like he was in control of the whole situation. He coldly set up a situation where she revealed the truth… and he could proove it…

And as one who believes that NO ONE, press, doctor, or Minister, should be above the law and not testify… I have no problem with this at all.

Equal protection means the law applies to all… and special groups should not get a pass, no matter what historical precedent there is…

Certified therapists? Shouldn’t testify without a court order… but they do, in some cases, need to be able to testify.

Romeo13 on March 31, 2009 at 10:33 AM

I think someone who surreptitiously tapes conversations might be a good thing in the administration.

Vashta.Nerada on March 31, 2009 at 10:33 AM

strictnein on March 31, 2009 at 10:25 AM

or..his ex was actually that hateful and spiteful and the children are better off.

I have no idea…but neither do any of us, because we don’t know enough.

bridgetown on March 31, 2009 at 10:33 AM

It didn’t break the law, and it didn’t have anything to do with Mabus’ conduct on the job. That makes it, in my mind, a non-issue.

Going so far as to say that Mabus broke trust with his wife through their reverend has nothing to do with how he conducts business is going too far.

1. He is untrustworthy.
2. He spies for his own interests above the interests of his commitments.

maverick muse on March 31, 2009 at 10:34 AM

I seem to recall the mysterious unsealing of court records involving divorce proceedings of a GOP Senate opponent of The One in Illinois. Not quite the same? Pretty close.

a capella on March 31, 2009 at 10:34 AM

So warrantless wiretaps are ok now? I get so confused.

trubble on March 31, 2009 at 10:34 AM

Didn’t Obama have someone else’s (married to that Star Trek person — Jerri Ryan?) sealed divorce court proceedings released so that he dropped out of the race? Sorry, too lazy to Google this morning, must take dog out….

Fortunata on March 31, 2009 at 10:35 AM

It should not affect his confirmation, but it is worthy of public scron as a dirty trick…

RedSoxNation on March 31, 2009 at 10:39 AM

Well he isn’t the first Obama nominee who appears to have problems with ethics.

GarandFan on March 31, 2009 at 10:42 AM

This will be, without any doubt, the most corrupt Congress in our country’s history. Losers like Reid and Peloser have no regard for the truth whatsoever. What are their constituents thinking when they send these thieves to rob them blind?

volsense on March 31, 2009 at 10:43 AM

Vashta.Nerada

/except that the taping and abuse of exposure will be at your expense and at my expense, never his own or Obama’s.

It will be OUR rights violated, just as he dealt with his own wife in order to get what he wanted, complicit with the crooked involvement of their ministering Reverend.

Putting slime in charge of our Navy seems dangerous given his tendency towards treachery. Why trust his allegiance when he broke the trust of reconciliation, abusing “peace negotiations”.

It’s an opinion, that’s all.

maverick muse on March 31, 2009 at 10:43 AM

Fortunata on March 31, 2009 at 10:35 AM

Jack Ryan. And the only “scandal” there was that Jack wanted to take Jeri to some sex clubs. Now, annoying Jeri Ryan enough to make her divorce you might show bad judgment, but both parties wanted the divorce sealed. IIRC, she even supoorted him in his campaign.

Mabus is sleazy in secretly recording the conversation with the minister. The minister is worse for agreeing to it, it should at least be a violation of his office. If it isn’t against the law, that’s only because the law (Mississippi, no federal issue here)is deficient. There should at least be a presumption of confidentiality here.

I probably don’t know enough about the facts in the case to say whether Mabus was right to record his wife, just choosing the wrong venue. But it is another black eye for Dear Leader.

rbj on March 31, 2009 at 10:44 AM

The guy and the priest are sleazebags.

Can’t the Bama find anyone who is not in some way slimey?

clnurnberg on March 31, 2009 at 10:46 AM

Beyond AIG: A Bill to let Big Government Set Your Salary

Showing us the cards..

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/politics/Beyond-AIG-A-Bill-to-let-Big-Government-Set-Your-Salary-42158597.html

Corruption, tax cheats, sexual perverts, godless… The very same people that are going to decide what each of us are going to make for our hard work.

IMPEACH NOW!!!!!

Keemo on March 31, 2009 at 10:47 AM

I am not taking sides here but what was the context of the divorce case?

Was he trying to secure rights with his kids and his wife claimed she wasn’t having an affair? Did she want half of his money while running around on him?

If he brought out the tape to protect his rights I would say its justified – that is if she were lying and he needed to clear himself. After all he was a party to the conversation.

Sorry but the wiretapping argument goes right out the window if my ex-wife is taking my money, my children, or my reputation.

Yes I am too lazy to Google around…

DavidM on March 31, 2009 at 10:47 AM

However colorful this may be for Mabus, I don’t think it’s material to his appointment. People do strange and embarrassing things in divorces, just as they say terrible things to each other in marital counseling sessions (which is why McBride should be ashamed of his role in this situation). It’s not even in the same league as Tim Geithner’s tax evasion, or Bill Richardson’s pay-for-play scandal, or even Vivek Kundra’s theft conviction. It didn’t break the law, and it didn’t have anything to do with Mabus’ conduct on the job. That makes it, in my mind, a non-issue.

Non-issue? Wrong my friend. This is a character issue. Not everything needs to rise to the level of Geither’s crimes to be an issue when it comes to appointments. The filthy liar or any President needs upstanding people working on his/her behalf. A man that would do what Mabus did is just as unfit for office as the bastard in the White House.

highhopes on March 31, 2009 at 10:47 AM

I didn’t think that PopStarJesus had scandals…just ‘distractions’.

Asher on March 31, 2009 at 10:48 AM

all a convenient distraction to keep our eye off the ball… away from the real scandal that is our POTUS

gatorboy on March 31, 2009 at 10:49 AM

I don’t realy care if Mabus is “sleazy” or not. My question would be: does this indicate a willingness to contravene policy and custom which would be detrimental to national security?

Example: Would this guy secretly tape a Joint Chiefs meeting and then leak it to the press in order to get money for some pet program?

hawksruleva on March 31, 2009 at 10:49 AM

Fortunata, you are correct that Obama began his political career by stealing sealed judicial records and broadcasting “dirt” on his opponent to smear his own way to victory.

That’s just the kind of Ugly American our nation needs at the helm of our Navy as well, particularly during these days of tension around the world, openly threatened in the China Sea and the Persian Gulf and off the Somali coast of Africa, just to name a few places requiring the finest attention.

Certainly no need now for an officer and a gentleman to conduct business with proper decorum and legitimate diplomatic skills.

Obama’s got us covered…in sackcloth and ashes.

Argh.

maverick muse on March 31, 2009 at 10:50 AM

what about the muslims he’s appointing, some of which that have advocated for Sharia law?

In 1991, Mohamed Akram wrote a memo for the leadership of the Muslim Brotherhood that explained its work in America as “a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.”

http://wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=93251

jp on March 31, 2009 at 10:52 AM

Example: Would this guy secretly tape a Joint Chiefs meeting and then leak it to the press in order to get money for some pet program?

hawksruleva on March 31, 2009 at 10:49 AM

Based on the limited information available, I’d say yes.

myrenovations on March 31, 2009 at 10:55 AM

Illegal? Maybe not. Extremely distasteful — most definitely.

And it increases the lack of respect the regular, decent citizen has for government. Which increases the break-down of the whole participative, government by the people thing.

Which makes it an interesting choice; surely there are qualified people who haven’t done something just-plain-icky? But those folks weren’t chosen.

Claire on March 31, 2009 at 10:55 AM

No Ed. Mr. Mabus and his pastor did a “nudge nudge wink wink” thing. A person’s actions in private life have bearing on how they will act in public life.

Mr. Mabus has shown that when expedient, he will forgo morality.

There has been no “act of contrition” here — Mr. Mabus continues to profit from his duplicity.

He’ll probably get in.

unclesmrgol on March 31, 2009 at 10:56 AM

jp on March 31, 2009 at 10:52 AM

edit: not sure the ones under consideration have stated those goals publicly, but none the less…

we’ve got legit fears for Saudi infiltration and have had for years

jp on March 31, 2009 at 10:59 AM

I think it’s relevant as an exclusion criterion.

Yes ordinary people do crazy things during divorce.

Extraordinary people display character during divorce.

If the argument is, cut him some slack because he’s ordinary I say pick someone else because there’s nothing special about this guy.

Up your standards.

jeff_from_mpls on March 31, 2009 at 10:59 AM

Being moral and ethical is a “non-issue?” What have you been smoking this morning, Ed?

JoeySlippers on March 31, 2009 at 11:00 AM

Ok, so this wasn’t like cheating on his taxes, and nobody is perfect (especially in this administration) but come on… why can’t we find men of good character to fill these posts? A man of good character, not to mention good judgment, wouldn’t have done such a thing.

scalleywag on March 31, 2009 at 11:00 AM

This seems like a stretch. He did it on advice of counsel, nothing was illegal and divorce is inherently nasty. I’d need to know a lot more, especially if there were any written rules they both agreed to that banned taping, or even if there had been a conversation saying that was not allowed. If there had been, I’d guess the court may have come out different.

Frankly, a “whatever it takes” attitude these actions suggest may not be such a bad thing.

EconomicNeocon on March 31, 2009 at 11:01 AM

The deliberate violation of a confidential family counseling session absolutely shows the man’s character. It may not rise to the level of scandal in Washington, but that behavior shows not a lack of judgment, but a callous and calculated disregard for privacy in the most intimate of contexts.

thespottedowl on March 31, 2009 at 11:03 AM

Up your standards.

jeff_from_mpls on March 31, 2009 at 10:59 AM

Exactly. Seems the standards got thrown under the bus too.

scalleywag on March 31, 2009 at 11:03 AM

why can’t we find men of good character to fill these posts?

scalleywag on March 31, 2009 at 11:00 AM

It almost seems like the administration is going out of its way to fill positions with unseemly people.

myrenovations on March 31, 2009 at 11:06 AM

I find this concerning, and find the “former Saudi ambassador” background concerning as well. A lot of Saudi threads in this administration.

Barack Obama ~ al-Mansourian Candidate

Wake up folks… http://www.accdf.com

Let’s roll.

ex-Democrat on March 31, 2009 at 11:07 AM

Barack Obama has been bi-partisan in his use of divorce records against his opponent. He owes his Presidency to that little trick.

First it was his Dem primary opponent, Blair Hull. Then it was Jack Ryan.
Of course, this behavior is very wrong and must be condemned….now.

MayBee on March 31, 2009 at 11:08 AM

Extraordinary people display character during divorce.

Unfortunately, there’s no one in this administration that I would call extraordinary in reference to character or good judgement.

scalleywag on March 31, 2009 at 11:08 AM

Nobody has more distain for Liberals than me, but this call on Mabus is pretty weak. I give him credit for sticking it to his ex-wife. Its normally the other way around. I have to figure that the judge had more to go on than a tape in order for him to decide that the father would get custody of the kids. How often does that happen. If Mabus felt he had to go beyond the norm to protect his kids, good for him. Some less imaginative types would have just shot her.

Syd B. on March 31, 2009 at 11:11 AM

As a resident of the Magnolia State, and a resident of the area in which this all went down, I can assure you that the situation of his ex-wife is not the point here. The man was awful both before the divorce and since then. He did this to use the kids against Julie, and his actions while married were not exactly spotless, or pure as the wind driven snow. HE did not want to lose any money either. He is just like all other Democrats in that they will fiercely protect THEIR money, but when it comes to YOUR money; YOU are SOL.

This entire event was greatly divisive here at home. Far worse than what takes place during Egg Bowl season! The whole case has been much like the current deal here with Trent Lott’s brother-in-law, Dickie Scruggs, and Bobby Delaughter. Bought off lawyers and judges abound! Mabus has not stopped to stoop to any level to win.

It is pathetic what a man has done to the woman that gave birth to HIS children. Pathetic.

As to the recordings and the minister, most Mississippians were outraged and so should Americans be alarmed at the thought process of a man that would pursue such actions, and those that complied with his wishes. The question that also goes unanswered is what did the minister receive for his actions?

I am not surprised to see my two Senators bend over and grab the ankles. Cochran is not going to run for re-election; you all saw what the man did regarding the Omnibus Bill! UGH! Wicker is a typical politician crap weasel.

Is there anyone in the Obama Administration that has not committed a crime or at least been suspect in a crime?

freeus on March 31, 2009 at 11:12 AM

It didn’t break the law, and it didn’t have anything to do with Mabus’ conduct on the job. That makes it, in my mind, a non-issue.

So if it’s legal it’s ethical? You’re missing out on a brilliant carreer in politics.

repvoter on March 31, 2009 at 11:12 AM

This is a house of cards. And has been.
There is no way this administration of shady characters is going to amount to anything good.
It is amusing in a way. Each pick is shady at best, criminal at worst.
Obama is trying to make chicken salad out of chicken shit.

ORconservative on March 31, 2009 at 11:14 AM

isn’t it against some federal law to take someone without their permission over the phone without a warrant. and yeah, i know this isn’t a federal issue & i know that this wasn’t over the phone, but it looks bad.

kelley in virginia

Nope. That only applies to a phone conversation or other transmission by telecommunications.

Dr. Dog on March 31, 2009 at 11:14 AM

Unless something else arises that shows Mabus engaged in illegal or corrupt conduct, that’s the right decision.

Ugh… flashbacks of Save us from Mabus bumper stickers…

elgeneralisimo realizes it’s a political appointment and that competency isn’t really issue, but please, Mabus ? Potentially the worst governor in the history of the State of Mississippi, which is no small feat given our unfortunate, long run to the bottom of the heap.

elgeneralisimo on March 31, 2009 at 11:15 AM

It almost seems like the administration is going out of its way to fill positions with unseemly people.

myrenovations on March 31, 2009 at 11:06 AM

You know, I’ve come to believe that men of good character and judgment don’t want anything to do with politics. Maybe they’re all farmers or coal miners or truck drivers or plumbers or teachers. They aren’t politicians for the most part. I’m sure there are exceptions, maybe we just don’t get to hear about those politicians that aren’t corrupt or self serving.

scalleywag on March 31, 2009 at 11:15 AM

Nobody has more distain for Liberals than me
Syd B.

And, apparently, ex-wives.

mchristian on March 31, 2009 at 11:21 AM

Just keep lowering the bar for personal behavior, Ed. Isn’t that how we got Clinton?
And before you slam me for demanding perfection, I don’t. I just expect a bit more than you.

SKYFOX on March 31, 2009 at 11:22 AM

And, apparently, ex-wives.

mchristian on March 31, 2009 at 11:21 AM

I’m entitled….on both counts.

Syd B. on March 31, 2009 at 11:23 AM

The minister should be tossed to the curb.

Laura in Maryland on March 31, 2009 at 10:21 AM

Absolutely right. “Ethics” is apparently an outmoded concept to this guy.

Not for nothing, but the continued interchangeability of “Priest” and “Minister” indicates an Episcopalian, which would explain a lot.

warbaby on March 31, 2009 at 11:28 AM

Maybe Mabus will end up being the next Linda Tripp…

Upstater85 on March 31, 2009 at 11:31 AM

It didn’t break the law, and it didn’t have anything to do with Mabus’ conduct on the job. That makes it, in my mind, a non-issue.

Domestic spying? Warrantless surveillance? Doctor/Attorney/Counselor – Client priviledge?

C’mon Ed, which liberal rallying cry is now OK?

Seems like the ex-Gov used the Patriot Act as a tool in his divorce proceedings.

BobMbx on March 31, 2009 at 11:32 AM

The minister should be tossed to the curb.

Laura in Maryland on March 31, 2009 at 10:21 AM

…and where should the wife be tossed. You know, the one that was screwing around on her husband? Or is that not a “tossible” breach of ethics?

Syd B. on March 31, 2009 at 11:34 AM

It didn’t break the law, and it didn’t have anything to do with Mabus’ conduct on the job. That makes it, in my mind, a non-issue.

then why post it?

sesquipedalian on March 31, 2009 at 11:37 AM

You’re equating the minister with the wife?
Oh yeah, I forgot, when you are losing try throwing out what someone else did.

ORconservative on March 31, 2009 at 11:37 AM

C’mon Ed, which liberal rallying cry is now OK?

Seems like the ex-Gov used the Patriot Act as a tool in his divorce proceedings.

BobMbx on March 31, 2009 at 11:32 AM

Well, for liberals, marriage is kind of like terrorism… Actually long term marriage with children is a jihad on secularism…

Upstater85 on March 31, 2009 at 11:37 AM

However colorful this may be for Mabus, I don’t think it’s material to his appointment.

Goes to character……

………. I don’t think this as$-clown would do the right thing when no one was watching.

Why do you think Mr. Teleprompter picked him…….?

…….. there is a psychological pattern in his choices that is very disturbing.

Seven Percent Solution on March 31, 2009 at 11:39 AM

…. she admitted to having an Affair… and admitted to telling the kids bad things about it…. so he did this so she could not take HIS money, and keep HIS kids to be brain washed by HER and her F- buddy… um yeah id say wiretapping or murder would be the only 2 solutions….

But really, what the HELL – our laws are 100% bias towards women, more specifically MOTHERS. They almost always get the kids, and always kid money they did not earn/house/alamoney what eves.
comment isnt showing up?
O i know somebody is going to say “not all women cheat, and some deserve all the mans money cause they worked while he went to school” blah blah blah just a distraction – i bet you think 99% of all abortions are from rape/incest too huh?

She is a evil person, to use kids as a weapon against a father (who by law will have to give her money because the courts automatically give her kids no matter what) is a evil bitch who deserves to live on the street with her new boy friend, without children.

Kinda like public schools, dont want your kid indoctrinated into liberal ideology and learning about gays and masturbation in the first grade? Home school/catholic school!! woo you have a choice…. what if you wife is going to do the same? or i should say Ex-wife… what if she is lyeing in court ? then your only choice is to expose her lies, and if it takes wiretapping then so be it –

So- warrentless wiretapping of a randomly muslim, find out he just got a shipment of anthrax and was going to kill thousands of people…. morally we should not act on it due to entrapment… yeah right (yeah i know this is all side notes)

Regardless – i praise this man, regardless if he is a lying pos ….. but i knew that soon as i saw the (D)

Donut on March 31, 2009 at 11:41 AM

The heck with the Navy. Put in charge of the NSA.

ignorantapathy on March 31, 2009 at 11:42 AM

People’s lives are so complicated. And just not very pretty sometimes.

I’m not thinking that this has much to do with the job he is seeking.

petunia on March 31, 2009 at 11:57 AM

The minister should be tossed to the curb. Unless there was a danger to the children that needed to be exposed (abuse, incest) the minister should not have pretended to “help” the couple so his buddy could set up the wife. Wrong, wrong, wrong. It goes to character, which doesn’t matter in the Dem’s world.

Laura in Maryland on March 31, 2009 at 10:21 AM

Emphatically disagree on two counts: first, there is nothing in anything I have read that hints in the slightest that either Mabus or McBride did the slightest thing to provoke the wife’s comment. She knew she was saying things that could be repeated from memory by either Mabus or McBride, and chose to speak anyway. The fact that she was on tape just made it impossible for her to deny later. Surely, she didn’t make the comment intending to deny it later?

Second, you assume the situation did not pose a “danger to the children”; however, it is pretty well-established that one parent’s hostility toward the other in a divorce sitation can – if not kept discreet (and she certainly showed no evidence of being discreet – making this comment in the presence of clergy) – be very hurtful to children.

You are wrong, wrong, wrong. Mabus was protecting his family (and the Judge apparently agreed), and – yes – himself, too. Seeing as how he’s now going to be protecting my family, I’m glad he’s resourceful. We’ll need it, I’m thinking.

ManUFan on March 31, 2009 at 12:01 PM

I really wonder if there are ANY politicians in Washington that are completely clean. I seriously doubt it. Anyone able to get the job probably isn’t worthy of that job.

cannonball on March 31, 2009 at 12:02 PM

Having personally witnessed courts award custody and the whole kitchen sink (along with most of the hubby’s income) to women who were batsh!t insane, I’m actually quite glad for this guy. Finally, at least one guy manages to get proof into court that wifey is a cheating, abusive whack-biscuit–and actually have the court agree with him.

quikstrike98 on March 31, 2009 at 12:04 PM

Another Obama appointee scandal?

Must be Tuesday…

Dukeboy01 on March 31, 2009 at 12:16 PM

If this guy made such a ridiculously poor choice regarding a spouse (according to him) what makes anyone think he would make a good Secretary of the Navy?

It’s ridiculous how divorce is no longer seen as a personal failing.

Yes, I know it happens all of the time, but this blame free nonsense is what’s killing this country.

People screw up continually and it gets explained away.

NoDonkey on March 31, 2009 at 12:17 PM

Just another example of Obama’s poor judgement regarding those he surrounds himself with. Not a suprise – just confirmation.

katiejane on March 31, 2009 at 12:28 PM

WWTOTUSD?

Weebork on March 31, 2009 at 12:28 PM

If this guy made such a ridiculously poor choice regarding a spouse (according to him) what makes anyone think he would make a good Secretary of the Navy?

It’s ridiculous how divorce is no longer seen as a personal failing.

Yes, I know it happens all of the time, but this blame free nonsense is what’s killing this country.

* * *

NoDonkey on March 31, 2009 at 12:17 PM

I agree with you; unfortunately, it’s the sort of mistake often made in youth. Frankly, it’s not so much that someone made a mistake (marrying the wrong person) when young, as what one does about it.

In this case, Mabus did two things I think are to his credit: first, he went into counseling even though it seems apparent his wife was heavily at fault; second, he was careful about protecting his position. (Bear in mind, here, that apparently Mabus had reason to believe his wife was likely to say something which should be recorded; probably, a previous counseling session in which she did exactly that.)

With respect to Obama, I think he leans a little too heavily toward the negotiating-with-evil option, but I’m a little heartened by his choosing someone careful about taking a defensive position.

ManUFan on March 31, 2009 at 12:34 PM

I hope someone asks him what he thinks of the Navy awarding that fat pig murtha the Distinguished Public Service Award…

rbb on March 31, 2009 at 12:40 PM

When my husband divorced his ex, outside observers were probably sure that they knew what had precipitated their divorce, and who was at “fault”.

They’d be dead wrong, but no less sure.

She had something to hide, something she didn’t want the world to know about, and he kept his mouth shut. He didn’t care what nosy strangers thought about him, and wasn’t willing to “out” her against her wishes in order to gain the approval of strangers.

See, he’s got character. I know it, and my opinion is the only one he cares about. I’m not one of those people that refuses to make a judgment about others based on their actions, but I know that I’m rarely privy to all of the facts, and the farther I’m removed from the situation, the less reliable my judgments will be.

ral514 on March 31, 2009 at 12:50 PM

Rev. Jerry McBride, an Episcopalian Priest…this is what happens when a Church begins to replace the word of God with their own dogma.
Isn’t this the Church who elected a gay Bishop…one that had cheated on his wife, and children, and had an illicit affair with a man?
Some standards…BTW, I was sure that Rev. have to abide by the same rules of other counselors, and this would be illegal by any other licensed “counselor”.

right2bright on March 31, 2009 at 12:52 PM

Either way, BObambi is a crap-magnet, pure and simple

HomeoftheBrave on March 31, 2009 at 1:02 PM

It didn’t break the law, and it didn’t have anything to do with Mabus’ conduct on the job. That makes it, in my mind, a non-issue.

Rather a small corner to paint oneself into as you just never know when you might not want to give a pass to a weasel’s weaselly activities.

MB4 on March 31, 2009 at 1:28 PM

Unless something else arises that shows Mabus engaged in illegal or corrupt conduct, that’s the right decision.

How far the bar has been lowered.

MB4 on March 31, 2009 at 1:32 PM

This could be a good match.

Don’t we need somebody in this positions that is NOT honorable? Somebody who we KNOW is a sneaky jerk?

Someone who goes into a house of God and backstabs the mother of his children.

WE NEED JERKS like this in power.

originalpechanga on March 31, 2009 at 1:44 PM

Well, since there was no decapitation…where’s the honor?

d1carter on March 31, 2009 at 1:48 PM

I hope that priest has lost his job. That betrayal was worse than the affair by the ex or the secret taping by Mabus.

ladyingray on March 31, 2009 at 1:50 PM

Being moral and ethical is a “non-issue?” What have you been smoking this morning, Ed?

JoeySlippers on March 31, 2009 at 11:00 AM

Virgina Obama Slims.

MB4 on March 31, 2009 at 2:03 PM

This could be a good match.

Don’t we need somebody in this positions that is NOT honorable? Somebody who we KNOW is a sneaky jerk?

Someone who goes into a house of God and backstabs the mother of his children.

WE NEED JERKS like this in power.

originalpechanga on March 31, 2009 at 1:44 PM

There has been no report – anywhere – that Mabus did anything but tape a conversation; perfectly legal. I think you need to take another look at who backstabbed whom.

Not only did the “mother of his children” have an affair, but she was willing to go into a “House of God” and tell the father how much she hated someone she had earlier chosen to marry. And if Mabus was taping it (and McBride was agreeing to it), chances are it wasn’t the first – or only – thing she had said outside the confines of the couple. Who knows what else she was saying behind Mabus’s back.

But I think we know where you’re coming from, don’t we? The man (the father, incidentally, of her children) is always at fault – no matter the plain evidence smack dab in front of your nose.

ManUFan on March 31, 2009 at 2:09 PM

Ed you miss the point. At this point in time you’d think all candidates would be thoroughly scrubbed. This has less to do with this particular appointee and everything to do with the people running the process.

Apparently the disclosure forms only include direct questions to which a yes or no answer is appropriate.

Clearly Obama’s vetting team have either demonstrated a total failure of imagination to consider the full breadth and depth of potential misdeeds this pool of candidates is capable or never thought to simply include an empty box with the following:

Is there anything else, anything at all that you might want to tell us that could possibly be a problem going forward?

moxie_neanderthal on March 31, 2009 at 2:19 PM

There has been no report – anywhere – that Mabus did anything but tape a conversation; perfectly legal.

So it was legal. Was it moral?

Why is everything suddenly about what’s “legal”? There is a lot of things that are legal that are not moral or ethical and I would say taping a private marriage counseling session is one of them.

And if she’s such a horrid person, what’s it say about his judgement that he married her and chose her to bear his children?

Not a lot. This isn’t a position as a mid-level bureaucrat, this is the Secretary of the Navy. The bar should be higher and this guy should be disqualified.

NoDonkey on March 31, 2009 at 2:25 PM

In perusing the comments on this thread me thinks that quite a few people are projecting their own histories and grievances onto this matter. Not the best way to judge something.

MB4 on March 31, 2009 at 2:26 PM

And if she’s such a horrid person, what’s it say about his judgment that he married her and chose her to bear his children?

NoDonkey on March 31, 2009 at 2:25 PM

Good point and, I would say, checkmate.

MB4 on March 31, 2009 at 2:28 PM

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