In a story we’ve been following since its early beginning, Colleen Bell, a producer on “The Bold and the Beautiful” and the wife of Bradley P. Bell, the show’s head writer and executive producer, has officially been named the U.S. Ambassador to Hungary, reports ABC News. Her confirmation didn’t go without a hitch, however, as Senator John McCain took a strong stand against her confirmation on the Senate floor earlier today.
“We’re about to vote on a totally unqualified individual to be ambassador to a nation which is very important to our national security interest,” said McCain. “Her qualifications are as a producer of the television soap opera ‘The Bold and The Beautiful,’ contributed 800,000 [dollars] to Obama in the last election and bundled more than $2.1 million for President Obama’s re-election effort.”
“I am not against political appointees…I understand how the game is played, but here we are, a nation [Hungary] that is on the verge of ceding its sovereignty to a neo-fascist dictator getting in bed with Vladimir Putin and we’re going to send the producer of ‘The Bold and The Beautiful’ as the ambassador,” McCain added. “I urge my colleagues to put a stop to this foolishness. I urge a no vote.”
Despite McCain’s strong words of discouragement, Bell was confirmed by the Senate with a vote of 52-42.
McCain previously showed opposition to Bell’s confirmation back in January, when he asked her, “What are our strategic interests in Hungary?”
In a transcript of her response, as published by The Washington Post, the following was said:
“’Well, we have,’ Bell said, ‘our strategic interests, in terms of what are our key priorities in Hungary, I think our key priorities are to improve upon, as I mentioned, the security relationship and also the law enforcement and to promote business opportunities, increase trade…’ McCain interrupted: ‘I’d like to ask again what our strategic interests in Hungary are.’
“’Our strategic interests are to work collaboratively as NATO allies,” she said, ‘to work to promote and protect the security, both—for both countries and for—and for the world, to continue working together on the cause of human rights around the world, to build that side of our relationship while also maintaining and pursuing some difficult conversations that might be necessary in the coming years.’
“’Great answer,’ McCain said, dripping scorn.”
“You would think this is the first time that any president nominated someone that’s a political appointee. Just because somebody is a producer of a very popular show, that doesn’t disqualify them. It’s ridiculous,” said Senator Barbara Boxer, D-Calif in defense of Bell. “I could point out people you supported, senator, who perhaps didn’t work at all, so let’s be clear here. She’s an intelligent woman. She knows how to be successful. She’ll do a good job and she’ll do very well I think in this position because I know her well and she knows how to make friends and she’s not angry.”
Watch McCain’s statements on the Senate floor below: