Kelly Knight Craft’s nomination to become the next U.S. ambassador to the United Nations has drawn the expected criticism from those who are indignant about the very nature of ambassadorial appointments.
To be honest, I believe Craft will be a superior envoy to the world body than the individual who pulled her name out of consideration. Heather Nauert brought next to zero qualifications to the job; Nauert’s experience consisted of a year as State Department spokeswoman and her time as a Fox News morning show co-host.
Craft is our nation’s ambassador to Canada. She also worked as an alternate U.N. delegate during the George W. Bush administration. I am concerned about her waffling on climate change and I wish she were committed to the idea that human industrial activity is a major contributor to the changing world climate.
OK, but what about her political ties. She and her husband, Joe Craft, are big GOP donors. They’re big-time allies of Donald Trump.
But in fact, their political involvement is no more involved than many of our nation’s ambassadors who serve around the world. Many of our ambassadors get those jobs as a form of political payment for the work they do to elect the presidents who appoint them.
There have been exceptions to that formula. Recent examples are former Vice President Walter Mondale and former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mike Mansfield, both of whom were our envoys to Japan. Our current ambassador to Russia is former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, who once campaigned for the presidency.
The late Teel Bivins got appointed our nation’s ambassador to Sweden in 2004. Do you think President Bush appointed the Texas state senator because of his expertise on Scandinavian issues? No. He picked Bivins because the Amarillo Republican worked hard to elect Bush president in 2000. He raised a lot of money for the former Texas governor. Indeed, Bivins had never set foot in Sweden before he landed there as our nation’s ambassador.
Is Kelly Craft the perfect nominee to lead our U.N. delegation? No, but she’s capable enough.
Donald Trump stumbled with his selection of Heather Nauert as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. Nauert was profoundly unqualified to represent us on the world stage. She pulled her name out of consideration this past week, citing unbearable pressure on her family.
So, what does the president do? He finds a superb candidate to represent our interests in the world body. Kelly Craft is the current U.S. ambassador to Canada. She has years of diplomatic experience; she served as a member of our U.N. delegation during the George W. Bush administration.
Ambassador Craft reportedly was the most easily confirmable of all the potential nominees Trump was considering.
This nomination begs the question: Why didn’t the president select Kelly Craft instead of nominating the former Fox News anchor, Nauert, to represent our nation at the United Nations?
Indeed, the more I think about it, Craft has more foreign-policy chops than Nikki Haley, who resigned as U.N. ambassador at the end of 2018.
I am hopeful that Ambassador Craft will continue to serve the nation well.
Heather Nauert, once nominated to be the next U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, had no business — none, zero! — being considered for the post.
She stayed in the hunt for the job. Until now. She has pulled her name out of consideration for the job.
My views on her are well known to readers of this blog. She is a former Fox News host with no foreign policy experience. Nauert was a State Department spokeswoman who once referred to Germany as an “ally” during World War II.
She says now that the stress of her pending nomination placed too much stress on her family. Nauert is pulling out. I wish her family well and I wish her well, too.
But back to the issue at hand: finding a capable U.N. envoy who can represent our nation’s interest before the world body.
Donald Trump keeps telling us how qualified individuals are knocking down the White House doors to work for the executive branch of government. No one should believe that assertion, but he keeps making it.
If it’s true, then the president should have no trouble finding someone with serious foreign-policy chops to be our nation’s top diplomat at the United Nations.
Isn’t that right?
Welcome to the real big leagues, Heather Nauert.
Donald Trump wants the former Fox News correspondent and morning talk-show co-host to lead the U.S. diplomatic effort in the United Nations. I am left to wonder if the president values the U.N. as much as his national security adviser, John Bolton, does. It was Bolton who (in)famously said you could remove the top 10 floors from the U.N. Building in New York and not lose a thing. Then he became the U.S. ambassador to the world body.
Nauert brings far less foreign policy experience to this most delicate of posts. She did serve as State Department spokeswoman for a year after leaving Fox News.
You know, I actually thought that Nauert wasn’t the first rookie to take this job. My thoughts turned to the late John Scali, the former ABC News correspondent who was U.N. ambassador from 1973 to 1975. However, a quick check of Scali’s record showed something quite revealing.
He helped mediate an end to the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 while working for ABC, carrying messages from President Kennedy and Attorney General Robert Kennedy to the Soviet embassy, warning them of the dire peril they were putting the world in by installing offensive missiles in Cuba. Scali then left ABC to work for the Nixon administration as a foreign policy adviser before becoming U.N. ambassador in 1973.
Thus, Scali had experience.
Nauert does not. In a way, though, she more or less mirrors the experience level of the man who nominated her. Donald Trump brought zero government or public service experience to the presidency when he got elected.
And it shows.
I fear the absence of any foreign policy chops is going to show itself yet again at the United Nations. Heaven help us.
Donald Trump has shown an ability to hire a wide-ranging array of key administration officials. They run from the brightest of lights to the dimmest of bulbs.
I consider Defense Secretary James Mattis to be among the stars of the Trump administration. He’s a retired four-star Marine Corps general; tested in combat. He’s dedicated to the defense of this country. Thoughtful, learned and a totally competent strategic thinker.
I hope he stays for the duration of the Trump administration, although Mattis’s tenure is beginning to show signs of wobbliness.
Then there’s the president’s latest selection to be our ambassador to the United Nations.
I am having difficulty wrapping my noggin around this one. Heather Nauert is nominated to be our nation’s top envoy on the world stage. Her credentials? None. She has nothing to offer.
Except for this: She once was a “news” personality on the Fox News News Channel, the president’s network of choice. She did a co-hosting gig on “Fox & Friends.” She dressed up in goofy costumes and acted totally, well, the way morning “news” talk show co-hosts often act.
Then she got a job as spokeswoman for the State Department. You might be recall how she sought to praise U.S.-Germany relations by citing, for instance, the upcoming D-Day commemoration. D’oh! Wait a second!
Our guys fought the Germans to the death on the beaches at Normandy, France. We were at war.
This is the kind of “experience” the president sought when he named this person to be our advocate on at the United Nations.