Dec. 5, 2004

Kerik nomination is a ticking time bomb

Kerik nomination is a ticking time bomb Ellis Henican December 3, 2004 Campaign bodyguard to Rudy Giuliani. Errand boy for the Saudi royal family. Energetic exploiter of Sept. 11th tragedy. Tough-talking publicity-hound vowing to bring law and order to Iraq - then hightailing it out of there after a disastrous 14 weeks, leaving the place far less safe than he found it. Oh, the bullet points on Bernie Kerik's real-life resume just go on and on. But is this really the guy we want standing between us and the terrorists? George W. Bush apparently thinks so. White House sources were saying last night that Kerik, the scandal-scarred former commissioner of the New York Correction and Police departments, will be named today to take Tom Ridge's job as head of homeland security. For now, let's give the Bush folks the benefit of the doubt: Maybe they've been wowed by Kerik's shameless swing-state Kerry-bashing in Bush's behalf. ('I fear another attack, and I fear that attack with ... Senator Kerry being in office responding to it.') Maybe they've been bullied by Giuliani's bulldog lobbying for a loyal business buddy and after-hours pal. ('OK, Karl,' you can almost hear Rudy say, 'I won't be attorney general, but you gotta take Bernie at homeland security!') Or maybe it's just that the FBI background check isn't back from the field.Whatever the reason, the White House personnel office really ought to ask some probing questions around New York. You can bet they'll get an earful of heads-up about this hard-charging, thick-necked, shaved-head lightweight. Let this be a warning from someone who's followed the man's ladder-climbing career: He's a personal and professional time bomb the Bushies will learn to regret. Don't say I didn't warn you, guys! That's certainly the message that smart law-enforcement professionals......" Continued

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