Don’t These Guys Know How To VET?

Ken AshfordBush & Co.Leave a Comment

You know, if I were to do Bush Embarrassment Watches, I’d do nothing else in my life but post here. But this one is too good to let go:

Last Labor Day, Bush announced that he was creating a new office — the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Manufacturing and Services. In doing so, he noted that that the U.S. had "lost thousands of jobs in manufacturing . . . some of it because production moved overseas." The position was intended to help with those issues. The announcement was followed by months of delay, and Democratic criticism for the delay.

So who did Bush (finally) plan to nominate? A guy named Raimondo, who is a longtime board member of the National Association of Manufacturers. Michael E. Baroody, the group’s executive vice president, called Raimondo "a class act who understands manufacturing and understands public policy."

But Kerry’s campaign, tipped off about the impending nomination several hours earlier, hastened to distribute news reports that Raimondo’s firm, Behlen Manufacturing Co. of Columbus, Neb., had laid off 75 U.S. workers in 2002, four months after announcing plans for a $3 million factory in northwest Beijing.


Seventy-five minutes after the administration announced a news conference with Commerce Secretary Donald L. Evans to name the official, an advisory went out saying the event had been "postponed due to scheduling conflicts."

Yeah, right. Full story here.