It may sound unbelievable to you that anyone would blame Ted Cruz for the mess that Biden caused in Afghanistan, but the finger point in his direction has already begun:
New from me: Afghanistan crisis also reveals broken US confirmation process. https://t.co/wzcWEZpU8G
— Laura Rozen (@lrozen) August 19, 2021
That is not what is happening today. Ted Cruz has an apparent blanket hold on all State and USAID confirmations. Meantime, he found time to issue a press release today lamenting the Americans “left behind Taliban lines” https://t.co/wzcWEZpU8G
— Laura Rozen (@lrozen) August 19, 2021
That’s right. They are going to try and pin this on Ted Cruz because he’s holding up State Department confirmations over Biden’s reckless policies on the Nord Stream II Pipeline.
Here’s what Rozen writes:
Despite the emergency and risk to thousands of lives, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) apparently persists in having a blanket hold on all State Department and USAID nominees, allegedly to protest the Biden administration not issuing sanctions on German officials involved in the construction of the Nordstream II pipeline. The Biden administration has said that more than 90% of the pipeline from Russia to western Europe was completed by the time it took office.
See, it’s already dripping with blame for the callous Texas senator who apparently doesn’t give a flip about thousands of lives.
Another fourteen senior State Department nominees have been favorably reported out of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to the full Senate but await confirmation votes—which are being blocked by Cruz.
“I share this paralyzing fear that Sen. Menendez expressed that something awful is going to happen without the kind of personnel that every president needs on post to do the job,” Sen. Murphy said on the Senate floor early Aug. 11—it turned out, quite presciently. The Taliban entered the Afghan capital a couple days later, and the US on August 12 began rushing thousands of US troops to Kabul to undertake a massive evacuation mission.
“We are talking about dozens of key national security posts that are left vacant because of the decision of one senator,” Murphy continued.
Cruz has subsequently postured over the Afghanistan crisis, but apparently has not lifted his hold to enable confirmed US officials to be in position to help assist the evacuation process or the fallout the US government is experiencing at other posts. Among the officials the US deployed this week to Afghanistan —former US Ambassador to Afghanistan John Bass, who is awaiting confirmation to be under secretary of state for management. “Thousands of Americans in Afghanistan in are in acute danger and trapped behind Taliban lines,” Cruz lamented in a press statement today.
“The entire process is broken,” one person involved in the Biden transition, speaking not for attribution, said.
“Biden was slow to announce people because well, we never had a normal transition and had to play catch up,” the transition official said. “And there was covid and the economy to tackle…When he finally announced nominations, we discovered the vetting system was broken and needed to be better…Trump didn’t vet people. And government was broken from the Trump years so nothing worked as it should…..Now Cruz is holding everyone and forcing floor votes that Schumer doesn’t want to waste time on … And there’s no end in sight.”
Rozen really is pouring it on here. Notice, however, that Biden gets zero blame for his ‘slowness’ to even nominate people. No, that is all Trump’s fault. But because Cruz is holding up nominees and forcing dreaded ‘floor votes’, he’s now responsible for “something awful” happening in Afghanistan.
Give me a break. As we’ve already noted tonight, Biden’s incompetence is on display for the world to see with his absolute failure in Afghanistan. Even if Biden had all of his nominees confirmed in the Senate, it wouldn’t have made a damn bit of difference because it was his withdrawal strategy that was severely flawed. No collection of State Department confirmations would have changed that.
Even if Biden had nominated competent officials who ended up getting confirmed and they tried to warn him of this, he would have ignored them just like he ignored the embassy staff in Kabul who tried to warn him and Blinken of “possible catastrophe”.
No, Ted Cruz had nothing to do with this. It’s all on Biden and the clown show he’s got running this disaster of a withdrawal.
UPDATE: Today I got this response from Ted Cruz’s spokesperson:
“President Biden and his defenders continue to blame everyone except the President for his botched, catastrophic withdrawal from Afghanistan. We now know that accurate intelligence was coming out of Afghanistan, predicting disaster if he continued to pursue his haphazard, flawed approach. Still, he ignored that intelligence and the officials who presented it. Instead, he repeatedly, directly, and explicitly misled the American people. Now he and his partisan allies in the press want to pretend that if he had a few more staffers for a few more weeks, that would have somehow changed everything. President Biden needs to stop playing blame games and start formulating a plan to get all Americans safely out of Afghanistan.”