The White House has given pause on its reported plans to nominate UN Ambassador Susan Rice to the office of Secretary of State after new information regarding the controversial public figure came to light this week.
Though Republicans have long been on the attack against Rice, this past week saw growing concern among Democrats regarding her nomination to Hillary Clinton’s soon-to-be vacated seat as Secretary of State. A deeper look into Rice’s financial profile shows several conflicts of interest regarding her potential nomination, including sketchy ties to Iranian businesses and one-third of her wealth tied to the fate of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline. The latter of these criticisms was originally reported by liberal blog Mother Jones, and The Inquisitr reported on the Iran ties last week.
Though Rice is not yet an official contender for the office of Secretary of State, and her investments were not deemed a conflict of interest to her post as UN Ambassador, she would be the final authority on the Keystone XL pipeline if given the position.
The Obama Administration has declined to comment on Rice’s potential role, and one of her spokespersons said that she has done nothing wrong with her investments.
“Ambassador Rice has complied with annual financial disclosure and applicable ethics requirements related to her service in the U.S. government and is committed to continuing to meet these obligations,” Payton Knopf, a Rice spokesperson, told The Huffington Post.
Attacks on Rice go deeper than her controversial involvement in the Benghazi incident, and these new criticisms have caused Democratic allies to question the Obama Administration’s support of the troubled Ambassador.
“Why is it that the White House seems incapable of doing anything to defend Susan Rice,” one Democratic official asked last week. “She is actually a member of the administration, last time I checked.”
If nominated, many expect that Rice would turn away from her controversial investments.
“In the event of her being nominated, we’re confident that she would divest,” said Susan Casey-Lefkowitz, the director of the NRDC’s international program. “For us, the main point is that high-level State Department officials dealing with the Keystone XL pipeline decision should not have any conflict of interests. That means they can’t be invested in Transcanada stock or any other tar sands holdings.”
What do you think? Should Susan Rice still receive the nod for Secretary of State, and is her investment profile an important factor in a possible nomination?