Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Condi hates that oath thing

with 2 comments

Condi Rice was all over the talking heads programs yesterday, telling lies at a good clip, but she’s decided not to respond to the House subpoena. I assume because then she would be placed under oath, a real chiller to the usual talking points she uses. Here’s the story:

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice made it clear Sunday that she does not plan to comply with a subpoena that the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee authorized this week.

Panel Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) wants Rice to testify on the administration’s false claim that Iraq was seeking to acquire uranium from Niger. The congressman feels that Rice has not been responsive enough to repeated written requests for information on the issue.

However, the Secretary of State, when asked by ABC’s George Stephanopoulos why she would not comply with the subpoena to make her case, said that at issue is a separation of powers issue. Rice was making the rounds on the Sunday talk shows to discuss the war in Iraq and the subpoena.

“I respect the oversight role of Congress, and I’m perfectly willing to continue to try to answer whatever questions Chairman Waxman may have about this very thoroughly investigated issue,” Rice said on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”

Waxman strongly disagrees with Rice’s claim that she has been answering his questions. Prior to the authorization of the subpoena, the lawmaker said he has written several letters to Rice in order to find out more about the “fabricated Niger plan,” adding that he did not receive the first response until March of this year.

Written by LeisureGuy

30 April 2007 at 9:36 am

2 Responses

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  1. Oh come on.

    It has nothing to do with taking an oath. Waxman is using his committee as a fundraising arm of the Democratic Party. Check your mail from Howard Dean six months from now, you’ll see Waxman represented.

    Rice has been deliberately baiting Waxman for almost three months on this. You don’t do that to Henry Waxman unless you have a really strong hand and you know that the entire BushLied Niger Yellowcake meme that the Left has been pushing is a complete scam.

    Which is what it is. Here’s the Newsflash-the British never disavowed the intent behind Bush’s famous “16 words”. Behind that lies the house of cards that is the Democratic Argument.

    Rice will go up to the Hill, but only after she has Waxman good and angry at her. She works best in those situations, where she has a Class A villian from central casting (that would be Waxman) as a dramatic foil. Further, she has succeeded in splitting the committee on partisan lines. Waxman will make threatening noises, etc., and eventually Condi will show up, but Waxman won’t like the experience when she gets there.


    30 April 2007 at 1:00 pm

  2. Interesting. I recall that you’re a fan of Condi Rice and have highly praised her accomplishments as Secretary of State (though not, naturally, of her role as National Security Adviser). Others, though, don’t see her quite in that light—the Sidney Morning Herald, for example:

    Opinion polls in those heady months of 2005 showed she was by far the most popular Administration official, with approval ratings close to 70 per cent and Republican activists urging her to run for president and launching “Condi for 2008” committees all over the country. Even Laura Bush at one stage urged Rice to consider aiming for the White House.

    Less than two years later, with George Bush, her mentor and friend, under siege by a Democrat-controlled Congress determined to force him to change course on Iraq and set a timetable for the withdrawal of US forces, Rice is conspicuous by her absence from the debate, unable – or perhaps unwilling – to support this beleagured and isolated President.

    These past few weeks, while Congress was moving towards passing historic legislation that would mandate a withdrawal of US forces from Iraq, it was left to Bush to make the case for no withdrawal, for his surge plan which involves sending 21,000 more US troops to Baghdad.

    The trouble is that Americans in the main are no longer listening to him. And they are certainly not listening to the Vice-President, Dick Cheney, who was wheeled out late last week as the Senate was moving towards passing the withdrawal legislation to accuse Democrats of proposing a policy of surrender in Iraq.

    There is general agreement – even Bush says so – that there can be no military victory in Iraq, that whatever can be achieved there now depends in large part on the ability of the Iraqi Government to deliver on the benchmarks it set for itself that might give it a chance to govern the country.

    Where is Rice on this? Where is Rice on what she and her State Department officials are doing in Iraq to help and encourage the Iraqi government come to key agreements on issues like the sharing of oil revenues and the place of Iraq’s Sunni minority in this “new” Iraq?

    Nowhere to be seen is the answer. Late last week, when David Petraeus, the US commander in Iraq, was doing the rounds of Congress to plead with Democrats not to set a withdrawal timetable, it was left to John Negroponte, the newly installed Deputy Secretary of State, to accompany him.

    Negroponte was there to brief members of Congress on political progress in Iraq and to outline for them what the State Department was doing to facilitate that progress.

    Rice’s silence may well be simply another illustration of the Bush Administration’s incompetence and inability to get beyond playing politics and doing spin to actually doing the hard work of implementing a coherent set of policies.

    For all the razzle-dazzle of Rice’s first year as Secretary of State, it is hard to think of any real and substantial achievements. Her “transformational diplomacy” in the Middle East has achieved virtually nothing. None of the region’s leaders, it seems, takes her seriously. Bush’s democracy project, which Rice embraced so enthusiastically, is virtually dead and buried.

    And there are no good signs that any peace talks of any kind between Israel and the Palestinians are likely in the foreseeable future, despite Rice’s frantic shuttle diplomacy in the region last month. Her decline mirrors the disintegration of the Bush Administration. Her biggest battle right now is to work out how she can defy a subpoena from a key congressional committee demanding she testify about how it was that the Administration, in the months before the invasion of Iraq, used a “fabricated claim that Iraq sought uranium from Niger”.

    Perhaps that’s the real reason why she has remained silent as Bush has tried in vain to sell Americans on an Iraq policy that a majority of them are convinced cannot succeed.


    30 April 2007 at 1:15 pm

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