Thursday, December 04, 2008

What's Wrong With Kentucky's Other Wing Nut Senator, Jim Bunning?


Poor old Jim Bunning can never get his story straight

Historically, whenever Bush has nominated someone to oversee something that had to do with money, it had a lot to do with a transference of great sums of taxpayer dollars to friends, family and financiers of his regime's key players. In mid-November, under intense pressure from all sides, he broke that mold and nominated Neil Barofsky, an assistant U.S. attorney general in New York, to oversee the Treasury's $700 billion bailout. It is widely considered to be urgent to get someone in there before a classic combination of Republican venality and incompetence send that money into the same pockets as all the billions and billions of dollars meant for stabilizing and rebuilding Iraq.

It seemed as though, with Paulson and the crumbling, Armegeddon-minded Bush Regime changing "plans" for how to spend the hundreds of billions of dollars they haven't already stuffed down the crapper, the Senate Finance Committee had tremendous and well-placed concerned for some real oversight. Even Max Baucus (D-MT), a reliable tool of Wall Street interests, understood the urgency. "This effort urgently needs the stronger oversight and increased accountability that the special inspector general can provide. I will do everything in my power to thoroughly and quickly vet Mr. Barofsky, and to see a confirmed IG on the job without delay.”

A month has gone by and the Senate Finance Committee still hasn't reported on Barofsky to the full Senate. No, they weren't waiting for all the money to disappear. They were waiting for lunatic fringe Kentucky Senator Jim Bunning to remove his "anonymous" hold on the nomination. And he did that yesterday, just a day or two short of it becoming public record who placed the hold. Now Barofsky's nomination should sail through the Senate confirmation process.

And Bunning? Mad as a hatter-- and up for re-election in 2010. Hopefully Menendez, the new chair of the DSCC won't make the same mistake Schumer did by forcing a reactionary from the Republican wing of the Democratic Party onto the voters of the Bluegrass State. They've already proven they aren't going to buy that bullshit a few weeks ago when they rejected the worst Democratic senatorial nominee anywhere this year, Bruce Lunsford. Lunsford wasted $7,534,823 on the losing race against McConnell and is now threatening to jump in against Bunning, who is sick, senile and will turn 79 before election day. Fortunately, more credible Democrats-- as in real ones-- won't let Lunsford drag the party down to another disastrous defeat. Many hope that state Auditor Crit Luallen will run or that Lt Governor Daniel Mongiardo, who almost beat Bunning in 2004, will take him on again and finish the job. Kentucky's Attorney General, Jack Conway, is also being rumored to be considering a run and, if Bunning retires, dies or is declared mentally incompetent before the election, Rep. Ben Chandler might give it a shot.

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