Photo: US Embassy Canada

The US Senate voted yesterday to confirm Kelly Craft, the former US ambassador to Canada, as the new American ambassador to the United Nations. The post had been vacant for months after the departure of previous UN ambassador Nikki Haley. But now the US will have a perfect Trump administration pick at the UN: Craft's main qualification for the job is that she and her husband, coal billionaire Joseph Craft III, donated $2 million to the Trump campaign and inaugural, and to other GOP causes.

It also probably helped a bit that the Crafts have a home in Kentucky, and are very good friends of Mitch McConnell. Moscow Mitch recommended Craft for the diplomatic job after Trump's first pick, Heather Nauert, dropped out because she had a nanny who wasn't legal to work in the USA. We'll just have to get along somehow without having a Fox News face in the nation's second most important diplomatic job.

Craft will bring to the job an extensive set of qualifications, like having lots of money and knowing a lot of people, none of whom happen to be actual diplomats or policy experts. She may be best known, outside her own donors-n-dollars circles, for her expertise on climate science, which she shared in a CBC interview not long after becoming the ambassador to Ottertown:

CBC: Do you believe in climate change?

Craft: I believe there are scientists on both sides that are accurate. [This is bullshit -- Dok]

CBC: Do you believe there is science that proves that man is not causing climate change?

Craft: Well, I think that both sides have, you know, their own results from their studies, and I appreciate and respect both sides of the science. [This too is bullshit. Notice Craft couldn't identify any -- Dok]

Since that remarkable display of bed-shitting, Craft has apparently learned to say words that would make her seem less of a ninny during her June confirmation hearings. It wasn't much, but it was enough to earn her some credulous headlines like this, from the Washington Post: "Trump's U.N. nominee breaks with the president on climate change." Let's take a look at Craft's new mastery of the scientific consensus, shall we? Craft testified to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee that

"human behavior has contributed to the change in climate. Let there be no doubt."

"I also understand that fossil fuels have played a part in climate change," she later added.

But Craft rejected urging the United States to make a return to the Paris agreement, warning that such pacts could "imperil" American jobs.

It's a tad better than "legitimate science includes internet randos yelling about sunspots," but there's not a lot of substance there. Craft also explained that the US will definitely take the lead on climate, if by "take the lead" you mean telling other countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions while gutting US regulations: "Let there be no doubt: I take this matter seriously, and if confirmed, I will be an advocate for all countries to do their part in addressing climate change." But the US doesn't need to actually return to the Paris accord to do that, you see:

"We don't feel like we have to be part of an agreement to be leaders," she told senators, also arguing that the United States' withdrawal was legitimate because "we expected other countries to step up, and while they did commit, they really were not serious."

As anyone knows, serious action on climate involves accusing other countries of laughing at us.

During the confirmation hearings, Craft was also slagged by mean Democrats for the very trivial detail that during her time as Ambassadeur de Poutine, she spent nearly half her tenure outside Canada -- a whopping 356 total days partly or completely taken up with travel during her 20 months in the job, including 60 days of personal leave. (Yr Editrix has noted that 60 personal leave days would be perfectly appropriate if Craft had needed parental leave, because babies are a time suck. Ambassador Craft is 57 years old, so we're going to go out on a limb and suggest she had no diaper duties.)

Now hold on here, you MONSTERS -- Craft can explain! She had to travel a lot because she was busy negotiating Donald Trump's NAFTA II treaty. And all her travel was "authorized," making it perfectly appropriate. Why are you all mad at a hardworking diplomat for her diplomatic hard work, huh? Funny thing about that!

Democrats found that only about 40 days of the 356 total days she spent partially or wholly outside of Canada were for trade negotiations.

The 60 days of personal leave were on top of that. What's more, Craft's travel records show she

spent all or part of 210 days, or a third of her time as ambassador to Canada, in either Kentucky or Oklahoma over the course of 43 trips. Half of those days were work days.

Please take a wild guess where Joe and Kelly Craft's two homes are! We bet a whole lot of important NAFTAing got done at the couple's two mansions, though, just like Donald Trump works all the time when he's golfing and Betsy DeVos always takes a stack of math papers to grade on her yachts.

In conclusion, at least it's not John Bolton, and maybe Craft will do less harm by not showing up and making things worse, the end.

[Vox / NYT / WaPo / Politico / Senate Foreign Relations Committee / Photo: US Embassy Canada]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.


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