This is a head scratcher. Well, not really, but one wonders who is paying whom, or who is threatening whom, in order to keep this particular circus stocked with monkeys.
When we last left then-Mayor of Los Angeles Eric Garcetti, Sen. Chuck Grassley, head of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and fellow member and Iowan Sen. Joni Ernst put the kybosh on Garcetti’s nomination to become ambassador to India, refusing to move his nomination to the Senate floor for a vote.
¿Porque preguntas? Because the City of Los Angeles and the Garcetti administration have pending lawsuits against them, in particular, the one involving Garcetti’s former close advisor Rick Jacobs, who has been accused of sexual assault and harassment all done on Garcetti’s watch.
As I reported back in February of 2022:
On February 2, 2021, an organization called Whistleblower Aid filed a formal complaint to the following entities:
Public Integrity Section, Criminal Division of the U.S. Department of Justice
The Office of the California Attorney General
The Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office
The California State Auditor’s Office, Investigations Division
The California State Personnel Board; and
The City of Los Angeles Ethics Commission
[…] The primary charge is felony perjury, but also outlines cases for criminal conspiracy, unlawful whistleblower retaliation, and other credible charges.
The complaint brings the receipts, from emails, deposition testimony, and documented news sources that show Garcetti was well aware of Jacobs’ behavior, did nothing about it, and even demanded it be covered up. In doing so, but then denying any knowledge of Jacobs’ alleged harassment, Garcetti willfully gave false information to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Grassley and Ernst took the charges, as well as the appearance of cover up, seriously, and on top of stalling Garcetti’s application, Grassley’s office mounted its own investigation.
Wow. By May of 2022, Garcetti was desperate. His 8-year incompetent mayoral run was mercifully coming to an end, and unlike the other political eczema on the back of California (looking at you, Gavin Newsom), any friends or political capital he had in the past was long spent. So, poor little wannabe power broker got his infamous parents, Gil and Sukey Garcetti involved.
In case you weren’t aware, Garcetti’s father is none other than celebrity trial whore and former Los Angeles County District Attorney Gil Garcetti, who botched the O.J. Simpson and Melendez Brothers prosecutions, and has dined out on it since then, including becoming a “consultant” on television shows like Major Crimes.
We see that the apple does not fall far from the tree.
What else does someone who is not well liked (politically or personally), has zero political capital, and even less working experience, do when the ambassador position he practically groveled for is on the rocks?
Get his wealthy and well-connected parents to get him across the finish line. And at this point, he’s out of any other options.
The parents of Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti have enlisted the help of prominent lobbyists to aid their son’s beleaguered nomination to serve as U.S. ambassador to India.
McGuireWoods Consulting registered to lobby on behalf of Sukey and Gil Garcetti on Thursday for the purposes of “Outreach Related to Confirmation for Ambassadorship Nomination.” The lobbyists on the account include a former chief of staff to Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) Ryan Bernstein and Garcetti’s own former deputy mayor and longtime advisor, Breelyn Pete.
The registration is the latest sign that Garcetti’s allies are turning over every possible stone to get his nomination across the finish line.
Now the first order of business for the 118th Congress Senate body: reconsidering past nominations, including Eric Garcetti’s nomination as Ambassador to India. Somewhere, somehow, somebody yelled, “Jump!” and the Biden Administration asked, “How high?”
From The Los Angeles Times:
President Biden renominated former Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti to be U.S. ambassador to India on Tuesday after Garcetti’s confirmation failed to advance through the U.S. Senate last year.
The White House also resubmitted nominations for roughly 60 people for jobs in key administrative posts or national security positions, as well as 25 judicial nominees who failed to win confirmation in 2022. Candidates must be renominated at the start of each new Congress.
Biden’s support for Garcetti, who was also renominated for the position last year, is notable given how long the nomination has lingered in Washington. The vacant diplomatic post comes as Biden looks to allies to help contain the rise of China and shore up support for Ukraine following Russia’s invasion. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will also host the G-20 leaders in New Delhi in September.
The incompetent KJP did her usual song and dance in a poor attempt to spin the damaged goods that is Eric Garcetti.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters Tuesday that Garcetti is “well-qualified” for the “vital role.”
“We’re hopeful that the Senate will confirm him promptly,” Jean-Pierre said.
“I am grateful for the president’s confidence, and strong support on both sides of the aisle in the Senate,” Garcetti said. “I look forward to completing this process, so that I can begin serving in India and advancing this critical partnership as quickly as possible.”
Quickly as possible? It’s been almost two years, why the rush? It is apparent somebody’s palm was greased, but to what end? Even with a supposedly 51-49 Democrat Senate, does Biden really expect Garcetti’s nomination to get past the hurdles it encountered previously? If the two antagonists, Sens. Grassley and Ernst have anything to say about it, it’s not going to happen. Grassley, in particular, is loaded for bear:
In a speech on the Senate floor last month, Grassley urged his colleagues to vote against Garcetti’s nomination and criticized the White House.
“How hypocritical is it for this administration to encourage victims of sexual harassment to speak out, yet when they do so against a powerful ally of Joe Biden, they’re ignored,” Grassley said.
A White House spokesperson last month declined to comment on Grassley’s remarks.
Garcetti has insisted that he has backing from some Republican senators that could help him gain the necessary votes to win confirmation.
The popcorn is popped, because just like the political theater being played out in the House of Representatives over the Speaker of the House vote, there is more here than is currently being revealed. It is obvious that Garcetti is desperate to escape his crimes, and they are many; the ones under lawsuit, and the ones yet to be charged. Garcetti is particularly vulnerable to be taken out, since he no longer has the cover of a political office, and appears to have few friends willing to run interference for him anymore. I imagine there are other corruption charges simply waiting in the wings to fly into Garcetti’s face at any moment.
Which is why Garcetti has set his face toward India.