Richardson Fails Up

By Larison, Daniel | The American Conservative, July 3, 2007 | Go to article overview

Richardson Fails Up


Larison, Daniel, The American Conservative


His appearance on "Meet the Press" was widely mocked as the worst on the Sunday talk-show circuit in living memory. His debate performances have been unimpressive, except when they have been embarrassing. His policy knowledge is superficial, and his positions are clearly opportunistic. Bill Richardson has never had it so good.

Despite his many mistakes and his coming from a state with few electoral votes and fewer big donors, he has managed to turn in a respectable second quarter, raising $7 million. And he comes close to tying John Edwards in third place in the Democratic presidential field. Clearly, obscurity has its advantages.

On paper, Richardson looks like the sort of well-traveled, experienced candidate that political parties seek. It would appear, as one of his comical campaign commercials suggested, that he has almost too much experience for the job. He hails from a Mountain West state that has been closely divided in recent presidential elections, potentially offering Democrats the chance to put a red-state governor on their ticket. As the only Hispanic candidate running, he theoretically has an advantage with a growing Hispanic voting bloc. He was even briefly considered for the second place on the Democratic ticket in 2004.

The story behind his "consideration" is a good example of Richardson's success in promoting an image of himself as an experienced statesman without having the qualifications to back it up. After making his desire known to the Kerry campaign, he withdrew from the process soon after.

There is a good reason Richardson would not be interested in extensive attention to his career. Easily elected to Congress in 1980 in a redrawn, heavily Democratic district in northern New Mexico, Richardson did not distinguish himself until the Clinton years when he became what the president jokingly referred to as "undersecretary for thugs" because of his penchant for negotiating with disreputable regimes for the release of prisoners. As U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Richardson mostly just kept the seat warm between Madeleine Albright's departure and the start of Richard Holbrooke's tenure.

As secretary of energy, Richardson received his biggest public humiliation. "You've squandered your treasure," Sen. Robert Byrd memorably told him during an oversight hearing looking into the security breaches at Los Alamos National Labs. While Richardson was only one in a line of incompetent administrators at DOE, the failures on his watch were all the more egregious since they concerned the loss or mishandling of sensitive nuclear weapons data. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Richardson Fails Up
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.