I don’t get it. The plan supposedly is to try to push him through the lame-duck Republican-controlled Congress, but the Democrats have already filibustered him once before. They’re not going to let him sail through now when they kill the nomination in committee in January.
I think Newsmax had it right this morning. He’s DOA. Presumably Bush sent the nomination back up as a sop to the base, to force the Dems to shoot him down; after having handed them Rumsfeld’s scalp yesterday, he must know that we wouldn’t look kindly on Bolton getting thrown under the bus too. According to Andrea Koppel, reporting on this about a half hour ago for CNN, an aide to Biden is already expressing disappointment that Bush hasn’t embraced the new spirit of bipartisan yadda yadda.
Exit question: could he keep Bolton on with a second recess appointment? I heard someone on Fox say the other day that such a move would probably be legal — but that they might not be allowed to pay him a salary(!).
Update: Good ol’ Linc, dicking us over ’til the bitter end. I’m glad to see him go. But alas, Bolton is done:
Sen. Lincoln Chafee, R-R.I., who was defeated by Democrat Sheldon Whitehouse on Tuesday, told reporters in Rhode Island on Thursday that he would continue opposing Bolton. That would deny Republicans the votes they would need to move Bolton’s nomination from the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to the full Senate.
Democrats indicated that even should the Senate try debating Bolton’s nomination when lawmakers reconvene next week — still under Republican control — they would stretch out debate on Bolton with the aim of killing it.
“I see no point in considering Mr. Bolton’s nomination again in the Foreign Relations Committee because regardless of what happens there, he is unlikely to be considered by the full Senate,” said Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware, top Democrat on the Foreign Relations Committee.