Ambassador Hill Edges Closer to Baghdad …

The cloture motion passed yesterday at 6:51 pm, so everyone got home on time for dinner and did not have to order pizza. The votes were 73-17 with 9 not voting — agreeing to end the debate on Ambassador Hill’s nomination to be Ambassador to the Republic of Iraq.

The 17 Republicans who voted NAYs included good old Sam. The 73 senators who voted YEAs include Senator Graham (R-SC). Nine senators who did not vote on the cloture motion included Senators McCain and Lieberman.

Sorry, Heather, you won’t see Ambassador Hill in Baghdad today. The final vote on the nomination did not follow the cloture motion last night. The Senate convenes at 10:00am today to Resume Executive Session and consideration of the nomination. The final votes could come today or who knows — soon. Somebody could suck up all the oxygen in the room with another ho-ha, er sorry — speech on North Korea.

From the top critic once more, bow:

“He operated a failed strategy in North Korea,” Brownback said. “Now they’ve launched missiles and they’re being investigated for selling enriched uranium to Iran. He was a complete failure, and now we’re going to give him the most important diplomatic post we have.”

North Korea is going to the dogs, Dear Leader is looking bland and old and you know whose fault is that. You can watch some more of Hill’s lovable top critic here.

And here’s one from a steadfast defender:

Senator John Kerry, the Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, called the criticism “unfair”. “Those who criticize him for not accomplishing more in the area of human rights ought to appreciate that he was, in fact, implementing the specific daily instructions that he was receiving,” said Senator Kerry. “And if they do not like that policy, then the real complaint is against President [George] Bush and the Secretary of State, [Condoleezza Rice].”

Well now …