Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Kmiec tells newspaper he still backs Obama

Stand by your man


In a swan song interview with the Times of Malta, outgoing Ambassador Douglas Kmiec says “there is a 98 percent chance” he will endorse President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election bid. 

Kmiec, said the newspaper, is scheduled to return to California today, and will resume teaching law at Pepperdine University in Malibu this fall. 

Kmiec resigned his ambassadorship in April following a critical report of his handling of embassy affairs by a U.S. State Department inspector. He said at the time that he had not been pressured to quit the post. 

In 2008, Kmiec, a law professor once rumored to be under consideration by the Reagan Administration as a possible nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court, stunned his colleagues by announcing in an article in the daily web magazine Slate that he was backing Obama in his quest for the presidency. In July 2009, in an apparent reward for his political support, the White House announced that President Obama had named Kmiec as ambassador to Malta. 

“I would say there is a 98 per cent chance of endorsing the President, coupled with the statement that I think the President is doing a great job,” theTimes of Malta quoted Kmiec as saying in an article published on Sunday. “I think Mr. Obama is doing a superb job. He’s someone who has made good on his principal promises against substantial headwinds.” 

Kmiec, said the Times, cited President Obama’s handling of the economy, the passage of healthcare reform and “his performance on the international stage” as reasons for his likely 2012 endorsement. 

Kmiec also briefly discussed a fatal Aug. 25, 2010 car accident in Southern California that claimed the lives of Msgr. John Sheridan, 94, and Sr. Mary Campbell, 74. Sr. Campbell died at the scene, while Msgr. Sheridan died less than a month later from complications from injuries sustained in the wreck. Kmiec required surgery for his injuries, but survived. 

Kmiec, said the Times, attributed the car crash to medicine he takes for Parkinson’s disease, which caused him to faint. “I had a low heart rate, and the low heart rate combined with this medication caused me to faint for four seconds and the car slipped off the road and into that ravine,” the Maltese newspaper quoted Kmiec as saying. 

In an April 24 open letter regarding his resignation, Kmiec referred to the State Department inspector’s report as a rebuke “for refusing to either suppress the relevance of faith in my life and writing, or to disregard the President’s assignment to promote inter-faith dialogue.” Kmiec called the inspector’s findings an act of “soulless, secular censorship.” 

The report found that Kmiec was spending too much time writing on the subject of inter-religious dialogue to the detriment of other ambassadorial duties. The State Department inspector also said Kmiec did not manage the embassy effectively, did not follow State Department guidance, and did not meet frequently enough with Maltese government officials.



He still hasn't learned his lesson. They used him and he allowed himself to be used. As St. Thomas More said to Richard Rich, ""Why Richard, it profits a man nothing to give his soul for the whole world... but for Wales?