The Democrats on Foreign Relations did their level best to derail the nomination of hotheaded Bush political operative John Bolton as US Ambassador to the United Nations but it was Republican Sen. George Voinivich of Ohio who shut down the vote for now:
A Senate committee delayed a crucial vote today on President Bush’s nomination of John R. Bolton to be the United States’ ambassador to the United Nations after a Republican senator stunned the Foreign Relations Committee by saying he might oppose the nomination if forced to take a stand.
The delay exposes Bolton, a controversial State Department hawk, to at least three more weeks of efforts by Democrats to derail his nomination as other Republicans waver over allegations that Bolton intimidated subordinates over disagreements about policy and intelligence assessments.
The delay also marks a setback for the Bush administration, which was trying to push the nomination through the committee in the face of the wavering support of two moderate Republicans, Sens. Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island and Chuck Hagel of Nebraska.
But it was a third Republican, Sen. George Voinovich of Ohio, who voiced doubts about Bolton today and forced a delay in the vote.
“I’ve heard enough today that I don’t feel comfortable about voting for Mr. Bolton,” Voinovich said. “I’ve heard enough today that gives me concern as a member of this committee.”