Tags: colleen bell | ambassador | hungary | john mccain

Colleen Bell's OK as Ambassador to Hungary Riles John McCain

Image: Colleen Bell's OK as Ambassador to Hungary Riles John McCain
In this July 24, 2013 photo, producer Colleen Bell poses for a portrait in Los Angeles, California. (Sean Smith/Bell Phillip Television Productions, Inc. via Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 03 Dec 2014 08:44 AM

Colleen Bell, an Obama fundraiser and producer of the soap opera "The Bold and The Beautiful," was confirmed as the U.S. ambassador to Hungary on Tuesday, drawing the ire of Sen. John McCain.

The whole thing in the closing days of a lame duck session was a stirring but familiar episode of 'Why Americans Hate the Government.'

"We're about to vote on a totally unqualified individual to be ambassador to a nation which is very important to our national security interest," McCain said from the Senate floor, ABC News reported.

"Her qualifications are as a producer of the television soap opera 'The Bold and The Beautiful,' contributed $800,000 to Obama in the last election and bundled more than $2.1 million for President Obama's re-election effort."

McCain, a Senate veteran of more than 20 years, acknowledged the routine nepotism involved in the handing out of ambassadorships, but seemed to think Bell was particularly underqualified to work in Hungary.

"I am not against political appointees ... I understand how the game is played, but here we are, a nation [Hungary] that is on the verge of ceding its sovereignty to a neo-fascist dictator getting in bed with [Russian President] Vladimir Putin and we're going to send the producer of 'The Bold and The Beautiful' as the ambassador," he said angrily. "I urge my colleagues to put a stop to this foolishness. I urge a no vote."

The subsequent vote went against McCain, however, confirming Bell 52-42.

McCain has been after Bell since a confirmation hearing earlier this year, where she failed to display even the vaguest knowledge of politics in Hungary, much less how Hungary fits into a larger geopolitical context.

Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer defended Bell, however, noting that being a "producer of a very popular show doesn’t disqualify her."

Bell is "intelligent and successful and will do a good job, and she knows how to make friends and she’s not angry," said Boxer, thumbing her nose at McCain.



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Colleen Bell, an Obama fundraiser and producer of the soap opera "The Bold and The Beautiful," was confirmed as the U.S. ambassador to Hungary on Tuesday, drawing much-deserved ire from Sen. John McCain. The whole thing was a stirring but familiar episode of 'Why Americans Hate the Government.'
colleen bell, ambassador, hungary, john mccain
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2014-44-03
Wednesday, 03 Dec 2014 08:44 AM
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