A collection of newsworthy information as reported from newspapers, magazines, and blogs.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Republican Senator Kit Bond Earns "Worst Person in the World" Label

Obama criticizes Republicans for delaying confirmation votes during his question and answer session January 29, 2010. The Times reports that more than a third of President Obama's nominations are being held up in the Senate for various reasons. Republicans were delaying confirmation votes on several of his nominees for reasons unrelated to their qualifications.

"We've got a huge backlog of folks who are unanimously viewed as well qualified -- nobody has a specific objection to them -- but end up having a hold on them because of some completely unrelated piece of business," Obama said at a question-and-answer session during the Senate Democratic Conference, held at the Newseum.
Office of the Press Secretary
President Obama Announces More Key Administration Posts

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, President Barack Obama announced his intent to nominate the following individuals to key administration posts: Peter S. Silva, Assistant Administrator for Water Programs, Environmental Protection Agency; and Martha Johnson, Administrator, General Services Administration.

Martha Johnson, Nominee for Administrator, General Services Administration
Martha Johnson served as co-lead for the Obama Presidential Transition Agency Review Team for GSA and is the Vice President of Culture at Computer Sciences Corporation (CSC), a role she has held since 2007. As vice president, Johnson is helping direct the change in culture within the 90,000 person corporation. From 2002 to 2007, Johnson was a vice president at SRA International where she managed a strategic consulting group that served federal clients including the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Labor. From 1996 – 2001, Johnson was Chief of Staff at the GSA, coordinating and supporting the strategic reinvention of a 20,000 person agency from a mandatory supplier of goods and services to a competitive, supplier-of-choice. From 1993 to 1996, Johnson served as the Assistant Deputy Secretary in the Department of Commerce, Office of the Deputy Secretary. Johnson was a Search Manager for the Office of Presidential Personnel in 1993. Before joining the Clinton Administration, she worked in a series of jobs that rounded out her business credentials in finance, marketing and diversity consulting in Human Relations management. Martha Johnson received her B.A. from Oberlin College in 1974 and her M.B.A. from Yale University in 1979.
Martha N. Johnson – The General Services Administration – she has waited since June for a full Senate vote. Senator Christopher S. Bond (R-MO) placed a hold on Johnson’s nomination in July as he urged the GSA to build a new federal building in Kansas City.

Kit Bond is blamed for Federal Agency (GSA) going headless.

In April, Obama announced his intention to nominate Martha Johnson for the head job at the General Services Administration, which acts as Uncle Sam's landlord. Kit Bond, Missouri's senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, which writes the legislation that, allocates federal funds to agencies; call a "hold" on the nomination in July 2009. Bond took the step in an attempt to force the GSA to approve a new federal building costing 175 million in Kansas City. “Sen. McCaskill, D- MO, does not have a hold on Martha Johnson.

The continuing wait for a new General Services Administration administrator — extended by the hold Sen. Christopher “Kit” Bond, R-Mo., placed on confirmation of Martha Johnson — is likely further slowing federal agencies’ already sluggish transition to GSA’s Networx telecommunications contract. Government wide, FTS 2001 services are costing agencies — and taxpayers — as much as $18 million more each month than the same services cost under Networx.

Bond serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee, the equivalent of a stool next to a cash register. From this perch, Bond has captured hundreds of millions of dollars for various projects in Missouri. Accusations that he's a wasteful spender are usually met with a wink. "Federal pork for Missouri is low in fat and high in jobs," Bond said in 2001.

In spite of his history, Bond voted no on the stimulus package. When MO was awarded funds to build a housing complex that gave the state 3,000 jobs, Bond quickly asserted that the Economic Stimulus package was a good thing. This effort landed him as Keith Olberman’s "Worst Person in the World."





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