Sunday, November 26, 2006

Will she do the right thing, the wrong thing or the even more wrong thing?

From The Washington Post:

The intelligence community and Capitol Hill are awaiting House Speaker-elect Nancy Pelosi's choice to lead the chamber's intelligence panel, an explosive decision that will anger key members of her party no matter who she selects.

Even before Democrats won control of the House, reports surfaced that Mrs. Pelosi would skip over Rep. Jane Harman of California, the highest ranking
Democrat on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and opt instead for Rep. Alcee L. Hastings of Florida or Silvestre Reyes of Texas, the second- and third-ranking on the panel.

Mrs. Harman is backed by many centrists and is seen as hawkish on defense matters, while Mr. Hastings has the support of the powerful Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) but is tainted by his impeachment and removal as a federal judge in 1989

This is just as important a test of Ms. Pelosi's character and leadership as the Murtha business was. If she is serious about running an ethical congress she will not attempt to elevate Alcee Hastings to such a sensitive post.

To make things worse knowledgeable insiders say that the animus which Pelosi feels for Harman stems from the fact that Ms. Harman has, for the past year or so, received more "face time" on the cable news shows. Petty jealousy is not a good foundation upon which to base governmental decisions.

And to make things even more worse we have this to throw into the mix. From Robert Novak:

A footnote: Senior CIA officials consider Harman a prima donna and say they dread the thought of dealing with her as chairman. They would much prefer Hastings, finding him consistently cooperative.

Naming someone that the Agency considers impossible to work with is not a good idea so it would appear that the best choice will be Silvestre Reyes. Does San Fran Nan have the wisdom to make it?