But will Holder be the next to be thrown under its wheels?
Eric H. Holder Jr. is facing increasing resistance to his bid to become the next attorney general, emerging from President-elect Barack Obama’s Cabinet nominees as the prime target of Senate Republicans, both because of troubling episodes during his service in the Clinton administration and because of the sensitivity of the post overseeing the Justice Department.
With two days of confirmation hearings set to begin Thursday, Holder must demonstrate his independence from Obama to a vocal chorus of GOP lawmakers who want to warn the incoming president that he should not veer too far to the left on national security and judicial nominations. The attorney general plays a pivotal role in those issues, which are of intense concern to conservatives.
The biggest question will be whether Barack Obama wants to have Blagojevich, Rezko, Clinton pardons, and freed terrorists discussed on the national news in connection to his incoming Hope and Change administration. Will he stick with Holder? Or will he wisely decide to find someone less connected to scandals and more interested in Justice than politics? I’d bet the wheels of the bus go thump, thump, thump by Wednesday.
Ed may be overly optimistic, here – but then, he may not be, either. I won’t bore you with yet another set of links to all the various questions and controversies swirling around Holder right now (although if you want to get one of your more progressive colleagues nicely wound up, utter the words “Chiquita Brands International” and watch them get annoyed at you); as the above quote notes, this is more a perception problem for the President-Elect at this point anyway. When Obama picked Holder, he probably wasn’t expecting the flaming chainsaw circus that is the Blagojevich scandal to be raging on, and he almost certainly wasn’t expecting that Holder would do something dumb, like not mention his own history with the Governor on a Senate Judiciary Committee questionnaire. And yes, that was dumb; there’s no way that he can believably claim that he had forgotten about his appointment, and it’s not like the news of Blagojevich’s arrest wasn’t prominently splashed on newspapers across the country.
So I guess that we’ll see – but, comes right down to it, the only act of political loyalty that I’ve really seen coming out of the President-elect since his election in November was towards Rick Warren.