Baucus Confirmation: Tough Questions?

As U.S. Senator Robert Menendez, Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, brought the nomination hearing to a close on U.S. Senator Max Baucus of Montana to be Ambassador to China, my first thought was this is 90 minutes I will never get back.

Then I remembered the Montana Television Network (MTN) crew of Jay Kohn and Marnee Banks who had traveled from Montana to Washington, D.C., to cover the event. They wasted even more time and money for the short 90 minute hearing.

That’s a few thousand dollars you can’t get back. At least they were in town for the State of the Union speech!

It looked like only nine of the 18 senators on the committee even showed up or asked questions.

As for news reports about the hearing, Lee Newspapers reporter Mike Dennison tweeted “Baucus faces tough questions at confirm hearing, but sens say he’ll be next U.S. ambassador to China.”

“Tough questions” are what Supreme Court nominees and cabinet secretary nominees face, but not Baucus.

But I guess with Baucus, even “How you doin” can be a tough question.

Politico reported, “Several tough questions and suggestions from Republicans interrupted a mostly placid confirmation hearing for Sen. Max Baucus to be the next U.S. Ambassador to China.”

The Washington Free Beacon reported, “Sen. Max Baucus (D., Mont.) did not inspire a lot of confidence in his nomination to be U.S. Ambassador to China at Tuesday’s confirmation hearing.”

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