Third Party & Independents Archives

Vet This

There is much hubbub in the media this week over Bernard Kerik’s “nanny problem”. Given that politicians have been laid low over similar issues many many times in the last ten years, you might think that anyone with political aspirations might be a little more circumspect about their hired help. But that is hardly Kerik’s only issue. Allegations of corruption, mob ties, ethical lapses, moral lapses, and extramarital affairs abound and the media seems content to only cover the nanny issue. For a White House that is quite clearly morality driven, it seems odd that someone with such a questionable history would have made it this far in the process.

Scott McClellan tried to defend the vetting process but dodged every single question about how Kerik got as far as he did without any of this coming up. There are two possible reasons for this. The first is that the White House knew about the issues and didn't view them as being incompatible with the values and goals of the Administration. The second is that they did not discover any of these issues, which doesn't say anything particularly good about the thoroughness of the process. There is a very very remote third possibility that they knew about the issues and thought that the media and Senate would either not find out or not care about them. This is unlikely enough to be dismissed without further discussion.

So which is it? Does the White House view ideological compatibility as more important than moral and ethical standards? Or are they simply sloppy?

Posted by rev_matt_y at December 14, 2004 11:26 AM