OHMYGOD, CAN WE STOP TALKING ABOUT THIS RETARDED “JOE SESTAK GOT OFFERED A POLITICAL APPOINTMENT IN EXCHANGE FOR DOING SOMETHING POLITICAL” NONSENSE!? If I have to hear one more Jake Tapper or Chris Cillizza act like they just fell off the turnip truck and landed in Washington, D.C., I’m going to have an aneurysm.
Almost all the jobs in the Executive Branch are political appointments; they’re filled by appointment…by the president. In the case of literally every administration ever, jobs like ambassadorships to Italy or any Caribbean nation have been filled by major donors. Advisory boards and plum jobs are filled by friends who, more often than naught, are also qualified for the job. In Sestak’s case, he was apparently offered a spot on presidential board dealing with “intelligence or defense” — not exactly a stretch for a retired Navy Admiral.
Even if he did it twice, Barack Obama offering someone something for a political favor is far from illegal, unethical or unprecedented. Just ask former Bush Attorney General Michael Mukasey:
It really is a stretch,” he said. “It would have to be something much more direct than what we have here.”
Not everything that is unseemly or exposes the underbelly of politics is a crime,” said Stanley Brand, a lawyer who has represented Democratic and Republican members of Congress in ethics cases. But he added: “They didn’t help themselves by waiting to do this till now. They fostered the notion that there’s something wrong.”
And yet here we are. Obama offered a politician a political appointment for doing something political! Can you believe it!? This is almost as bad as that time Bill Clinton murdered Ron Brown and Vince Foster. In fact, it’s almost as bad as the time Ronald Reagan offered a political job to a Senate candidate from Hawaii in exchange for his stepping away from a crowded primary contest.