Susan Rice had to be destroyed. Her career trajectory to the top of the diplomatic world had to be stopped by any means necessary and she had to be denied the opportunity to serve as Secretary of State because the Republicans want President Obama to nominate John Kerry as Secretary of State. That way, Kerry's Senate seat is wide open and, when a special election is held to fill the vacancy, Scott Brown can swoop in, take Kerry's seat, return to the Senate, and Republicans will be one step closer to taking control of the Senate.
But also, with Susan Rice's withdrawal from consideration for Secretary of State, Republicans can wink and nod at one another, knowing that their strategy of lying, slandering, making baseless attacks, and throwing a tantrum until they got their way actually worked (and may even work again, and again, and again). President Obama doesn’t need to nominate John Kerry. He needs to double down and give them a nominee who is ten times more horrifying to Republicans than Susan Rice could ever be. You didn't want a woman as qualified and capable as Susan Rice? Fine. Let's play.
President Obama, stop trying to play by the rules–get angry and fight. These insolent children have no respect for the rules and they will run over you if you keep being Mr. Nice Guy to these little gray haired senile old brats. You won the elections, your ideas won, your party picked up seats in both houses, the people are on your side on the issues, and it's damn time you started acting like it. Yes, I know that Mitt Romney's insinuations about Libya "offend" you and John McCain's baseless assaults on the character and smarts of Susan Rice "outrage" you, but it's time to do more than just say it. It's time to show it and stop letting the insecure bullies reign over the adults on the playground.
Oh, and Senator McCain, now is not the time to express some feigned gratitude to Ambassador Rice for the service you now pretend to recognize. Now is the time to apologize to her for besmirching her reputation in the name of petty political games and, quite frankly, your unabated bitterness over 2008. You lost. You don't have to rip the country apart and destroy the careers of good public servants, though. Just get over it. John Kerry did and look at him—your whole party is suddenly eager to confirm him as Secretary of State.