I've been writing about the Committee for a few years now and I usually focus on Burr. He can be cranky at times. I don't consider that a bad thing. He doesn't usually try to pretty it up or find a smiley face stamp to cover everything up with.
I've defended him when he was under Democratic attack for holding up appointments (and would do so again) because he had actual reasons for that. Although he's from 'the other side of the aisle,' as they say on TV, I do like Burr and he's probably my favorite member on the Committee.
So at the end of the business day yesterday, Defense Department's Deputy Assistant Secretary Dr. George Taylor finally got his prepared statement to the Committee.
Burr noted in his opening remarks that this was unacceptable. He noted that it was his preference that Taylor's remarks be ignored since they weren't delivered on time.
Patty Murray is the Chair and she overruled him on that stating that the issues being addressed were too important.
I see her point but I agree with Burr. I believe it was two years ago when the Defense Department pulled this stunt last (maybe three years) and then-Chair Daniel Akaka refused to allow the remarks to go in the record as a result.
Taylor was on the second panel.
When the panel came before the Committee, Burr wanted to know what the hold up was and he was given a song-and-dance. Taylor said he'd look into what the hold up was.
Which led Burr to ask if Taylor wrote his own prepared remarks because, if he had, he should know when they were done.
It was a good point and Taylor tried to stay bright and put a happy face on it.
During this time, for the record, Chair Murray did note that she found it "unacceptable" and that it didn't need to happen again.
I agree. And I do understand her point of view about the remarks needing to be in the record but I still agreed with Burr. And this wasn't the first time for the Defense Department.
Closing with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:'
the new york times
chelsea j. carter
the associated press