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Bush Undermines Powell in Refugee Bureau Nomination

In a move that does not resemble “compassionate conservative” politics, President George W. Bush overruled moderate U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell on his choice of who will head a crucial refugee bureau within the U.S. State Department. While Powell chose Alan Kreczko, a longtime civil servant, to head the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration, the White House overstepped Powell and chose instead John Klink for the important position. Klink, as the adviser to the “Holy See,” represents the interests of the Vatican at the United Nations and is opposed to condom and emergency contraception distribution, despite the current HIV/AIDS epidemic. Bush similarly ignored the advice of moderate Cabinet Member Christine Todd Whitman in rejecting new cleaner air standards. Bush’s rejection of Powell’s nominee is a major setback for Powell as Secretary of State.

Sources:

New York Times - May 24, 2001