Several well-placed sources close to the Bolton nomination process have reported to me that the Bolton confirmation process is now dead.

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee is "highly unlikely" to reconsider Bolton's confirmation again as things now stand.

One insider reported, as far as the Committee is concerned, "we consider the confirmation over. It's dead."

American diplomacy may get a boost in January. She's tough and not a darling of many progressives, but my vote is for Bush's next nominee to serve as US Ambassador to the United Nations is Under Secretary of State for Global Affairs Paula Dobriansky.

Senator Lincoln Chafee
gets this week's 'Conservative with a Conscience' Award for his principled stand on the importance of America's Middle East diplomacy and for making the Bolton confirmation process an appropriate vehicle to express his concerns.

-- Steve Clemons is Senior Fellow and Director of the American Strategy Program at the New America Foundation and publishes the popular political blog, The Washington Note.