Wicker says Post report on Egypt effort off-base

McCain and Feingold led the effort to push Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak toward more free and fair elections. The resolution called for “supporting democracy, human rights, and civil liberties in Egypt.”

“I wanted to make sure that it was given due diligence, and I made suggestions to improve the resolution,” Wicker said. “At no point did I oppose the resolution or place a hold on the resolution. My staff and I talked with representatives of a wide array of groups that had interest in the resolution, trying to get the most well-rounded understanding of this complex issue. Even though it was non-binding, it was still important.”

Wicker said by November, he had concluded that a “good faith effort” was made to improve the resolution and “passed this message” to McCain and Feingold staffs.

The Egypt democracy resolution died in December, Rogin wrote, because of a “fatal mix of divided loyalties, lobbying influence and secret Senate holds.”

A “hold” is an informal practice by which a senator can prevent a bill from reaching the floor for consideration. Rogin wrote that two unidentified Democratic senators held up the resolution in that way.

NEMS360
2/4/11