by Navy Vet Terp
Sun Apr 22nd, 2007 at 03:14:42 PM EST
(Cross posted on Daily Kos)
This morning the Baltimore Sun is reporting that Ellen Sauerbrey, by the typical recess appointment the Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees and Migration, will officially represent the United States government, at taxpayer expense, at a conclave of European wingnuts in Poland. Link is here:
The article states that Sauerbrey will be joining such worthies as Cardinal Alfonso Lopez Trujillo, who has opined that condums are useless in limiting the spread of AIDS, Steven Mosher, who asserts that Moslem immigrants are causing the "demographic destruction of Europe", and yet to be named representatives of James Dobson's Focus on the Family and the anti-evolution Discovery Institute
Her scheduled trip to Poland has created controversy in Europe. 19 members of the European Parliament, representing the European Parliamentary Working Group on Separation of Religion and Politics, have asked Sauerbrey not to attend this right wing conference.
Ellen Sauerbrey may not be a household word outside of Maryland, but she is well known to Marylanders. In the late 1980's and early 1990's, as Republican leader in the House of Delegates, she was a regular guest on right wing radio and made her extremist views well known to anyone who could stand to listen. In 1994, she was the upset winner of the Republican primary for governor, defeating former Congresswoman Helen Bentley.
In her campaign for governor against Democrat Parris Glendening, Sauerbrey promised to cut taxes, and slash government spending, by one-third, exempting only the state police and prisons from her draconian cuts. Under the Maryland Constitution, the legislature lacks the power to increase any budget proposed by the governor, so a Governor Sauerbrey fulfilling her campaign promises would have created devastation to the public schools, the envirnoment, social services, everything.
She lost by a mere 6,000 votes but she and her wingnut friends were not done. They explained that the late voting results from inner city Baltimore that put Glendening over the top were the result of the Democrats opening up the Maryland Penitentiary late at night and busing the prisoners to these polling places, hours after they had closed. They produced names of prisoners that matched names of voters but, of course, made no attempt to match dates of birth or social security numbers. They also claimed that Democratic voters voted twice, one of these double voters was allegedly Steve Sachs, Maryland Attorney General from 1979 to 1987, who lost in his bid for governor in 1986. Of course, Sauerbrey made no attempt to match the identifying data of the two voters named Steve Sachs. When the Republican Party sued to have the election results tossed out, they could produce no evidence to back up their allegations. The only witnesses were the two Steve Sachs, the famous one and his un-famous namesake, both of whom testified that they voted only once.
In 1998 Governor Glendening easily defeated Sauerbrey when he ran for reelection, despite the bumper stickers "Re-Elect Governor Sauerbrey."
In 2001 Bush named Sauerbrey to be U.S. Representative to the United Nations on the Status of Woman, where she made a name for herself traveling to United Nations conferences denouncing contraceptives as well as abortion. Her recess appointment as Assistant Secretary of State came after the Bushies were unable to get her nomination out of the Foreign Relations Committee.