By John Aloysius Farrell, Thomas Jefferson Street blog
Every once in a while I forget our president made his bones in the politics of Chicago. He's so dignified, you know.
And then I am reminded by a little item like this: Conservative legal scholar Douglas Kmiec has been nominated to serve as ambassador to Malta.
Kmiec, you may recall, worked for Reagan and Bush (41) and as a professor at Notre Dame and Pepperdine. For many years, he was the media's go-to guy when we wanted a sane conservative (i.e., not Ken Starr) to interpret the Supreme Court's rulings.
And then, last year, Kmiec turned up as a supporter of Barack Obama.
Specifically, Kmiec helped lead an effort, targeted at Catholics, that vouched for Obama and suggested that folks could trust him to make abortion rare. This would be done when Republicans and Democrats got together and worked to encourage good things like adoption and discourage bad things like teen pregnancy. I thought this a noble effort, and have written warmly of it, in part because I figured that Kmiec would be around to hold Obama's feet to the fire. After all, Kmiec had put his credibility on the line.
But now he is off to Malta, a lovely island nation in the Mediterranean where the arduous duties of ambassador can be dispensed in a morning's work. Then have your staff prepare a lunch; the sailboat is waiting. And remember to be back for the evening's reception at the yacht club. If you ask a career foreign service officer about being posted to Malta, they tend to get misty-eyed and blabber rhapsodically.
Ah, Chicago. Is Kmiec getting his reward for shilling to Catholics? Or is this a shrewd move on the part of Rahm and Ax to get him out of the country and dispense with any uncomfortable questions he might raise about abortion: like when, exactly, is the White House going to do something to make it rare? I am shocked, shocked. But I promise you this, Rahm Emanuel. I will be here to raise those questions. My voice shall not be stilled.
Unless, maybe, Bermuda needs my help.