Credibility is one of those things like a coin, that has two sides. To the one, credibility earns extraordinary respect for one’s opinion. To the other, that credibility also accentuates occasions when one exploits, and thereby squanders it.
Steve Benen offers an impressive effort, hoping to explain the magnitude of former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice’s betrayal of her own prestige in backing the U.S. Senate campaign of Iowa state Sen. Joni Ernst (R-12):
The notion that Joni Ernst has an admirable understanding of America’s role abroad is tough to take seriously.
It’s Ernst, after all, who recently argued that Saddam Hussein really did have weapons of mass destruction – reality be damned – based on secret evidence that Ernst has “reason to believe,” but can’t explain.
I can see why such nonsense might endear the far-right candidate to a veteran of the Bush/Cheney team, but it doesn’t exactly reflect someone with sound judgment on international affairs.
For that matter, Ernst also argued in a recent debate that “there’s no sense” in having members of Congress meet their obligations under the Constitution when it comes to authorizing the use of military force abroad.
And, then, of course, there are Ernst fears about the Agenda 21 conspiracy.
Then again, maybe Dr. Rice hasn’t actually betrayed any credibility. It could be that she never really had any in the first place, while Beltway journalists pretended she did. It makes for a better story that way.
Benen, Steve. “Condoleezza Rice praises Ernst’s foreign policy vision”. 29 October 2014.