Skip to comments.Blair tipped to be World Bank president as disgraced Wolfowitz resigns
Posted on 05/18/2007 8:50:09 AM PDT by HarmlessLovableFuzzball
Tony Blair may be asked to head the World Bank after its president quit in a sleaze row.
One of Americas top economists today revealed that the retiring prime minister is being considered as a replacement for disgraced Paul Wolfowitz.
Nobel prize-winner Joe Stiglitz, a former senior vice president at the World Bank, said: "He is one of the people that is clearly being discussed."
Mr Blair is expected to cash in on his international contacts after quitting Downing Street on 27 June and his agent said he would quit as an MP if "a big international job" came up.
Mr Stiglitz said the World Bank would probably prefer an economist with experience in development - which some pundits argue effectively rules out the prime minister, who has often admitted to being shaky at maths.
Nevertheless, Prof Stiglitz said: "He is one of the people that is clearly being discussed.
"I think it would be good for the institution at this juncture if they had somebody who was an economist who really understood what development was entailed and could work closely with the staff that has been very alienated by Paul Wolfowitz over the last two years and bring together the institution.
"It wouldn't rule (Blair) out but I would say that if I were going through a first priority list of priorities it would probably begin with somebody with real experience in development.
"But Blair has clearly been a political leader that has the kinds of connections that one needs, that would be useful as head of the institution."
Embattled World Bank president Paul Wolfowitz agreed to quit last night over a favouritism row involving his girlfriend.
The move ended weeks of intense pressure on the former U.S. deputy defence secretary, a close ally of President Bush and an architect of the Iraq war.
He had faced furious criticism after details emerged of his role in securing a promotion and pay rise for his partner, Oxford-educated Shaha Riza, when he joined the bank in 2005.
Bank sources said Mr Wolfowitz will leave on June 30 with a £200,000 pay-off and a face-saving compromise in which the bank takes part of the blame for the scandal.
They said the bank accepted it should have sorted out the details of a deal which moved Miss Riza to the State Department before Mr Wolfowitz actually took over.
The terms of her pay rise and promotion should have been set by the personnel department and not left to the bank president.
Mr Wolfowitzs depsaidarture was announced as a key ally of Gordon Brown, Tom Scholar, faced similar claims of using his World Bank post to secure promotion for his girlfriend.
Mr Scholar, who was the Chancellors private secretary, is tipped for a top job in Downing Street when Mr Brown becomes premier.
Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal published an email it said was sent to bank bosses last year by an unnamed colleague.
It said: "Please know that UK ED (executive director) Tom Scholar is continuing an affair with (a bank employee).
"This woman has been given preferential treatment in (the department) because of her relationship with this powerful ED, this affair is well-known, and is in violation of the bank staff rules and the boards standards of conduct."
The newspaper, which has supported Mr Wolfowitz throughout the controversy, another complaint, possibly-from the same person, was filed this week.
It claimed: "Mr Scholar has used his privileged position as an executive director to influence bank staff to manipulate Ms s job description in a way to suit her limited professional qualification.
"Without Mr Scholars intervention she would clearly not occupy her present position. Several staff members have reported these facts ... these complaints have been ignored."
Mr Scholar, 37, is a member of the board that oversees the work of the bank and had been deliberating Mr Wolfowitzs fate. He firmly denied any wrongdoing.
He insisted: "There is no conflict of interest. As an executive director, representing my government at the World Bank, rather than a member of staff or management, I do not have any supervisory responsibility for bank staff beyond the five in my immediate office.
"I am not the supervisor of my partner, either directly or indirectly. We have never come into professional contact and I have made arrangements to avoid any possibility of professional contact.
"Since I am not a member of staff or management, I could never be involved in any individual personnel decision affecting her. And I have never discussed or made reference to any such issue with anyone who could possibly be involved."
There were suspicions that he may be the victim of a smear campaign by supporters of Mr Wolfowitz, who believed he was forced out unfairly by European governments.
We have entered the Demagoguery Age.
Oh, great. Freepers may think of Tony Blair as the guy who stood with us in Iraq (although I think he liked standing with clinton in Yugoslavia better).
But he’s also a Labourite, with a very liberal domestic program, and a strong supporter of homosexuals. He pushed through the bill lowering the age of homosexual consent for minors against strong opposition, and more recently he pushed through laws forcing the Catholic Church in England to condone sexuality or abandon many of its activities.
He can be counted on to return the World Bank to the extreme liberal activities that Wolfowitz opposed, especially “population planning” i.e. population control and forced abortions.
It’s an old saying, “don’t **** where you eat.” Duh.
LOL!? They smeared and set-up Wolfowitz largely because of his role in the Iraq war and now they’ll get “Bush’s poodle” on Iraq in return?
Many of the articles written about Jack Abramoff described him as "disgraced" so now the media is picking up that term for Wolfowitz. Funny how "disgraced" is never used in connection with George Soros even though he is technically a convicted felon.
Even funnier how they use the term disgraced after he was cleared of all charges. Hmmmm and I heard his replacement was going to be Soros flunky Malloch Brown, talked about discgraced, he of the Oil for Food scandal.
Wolfowitz has been around long enough to know that perception is everything. Regardless of him consulting with the ethics committee, he knew better than to pull a clintoonian like this. Shame on him!
This is a horrible idea. It would be the first non-American to serve in that role and would establish the precedent that the EU socialists can drive out of office anyone they do not like. Screw them. Bush should appoint Paul Volker or John Bolton.
John Bolton for World Bank president!!!
Bill Clinton made his wife head of an enormous health care task force. That’s more than just a promotion. JFK made his brother Attorney General. Bill Clinton had Vernon Jordan get Monica Lewinsky a high paying job, whereas she was formerly an unpaid intern. Cronyism is an unavoidable aspect of government and business. Miss Riza is an accomplished professional who deserved a promotion as much as her highness HRC.
Bolton would be perfect.
They would wish they had Wolfowitz back.
Why would we want Tony Blair spending our money?
Still doesn’t make it right. Besides, HRK didn’t get paid with taxpayer money. I believe that her efforts were not compensated.
The point is that there are many despicable things done by Democats everyday. That is why we are better. “What the democrats did” should never be allowed to justify our actions. otherwise we will become like them.
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