Joe Lieberman – Trump's reported top pick to head the FBI – is a terrible candidate for the job.
There are at least three reasons why. To wit:
1. The FBI director serves a 10-year term. Joe Lieberman is 75 years old. That's 20 years older than the average age of a nominee for FBI director, and 13 years older than the oldest nominee in U.S. history, Clarence M. Kelley.
2. Lieberman, a former senator, would be the first politician ever appointed to the job. Every past director served as either an agent in the bureau, a federal prosecutor or a federal judge prior to their nomination. (Lieberman was attorney general of Connecticut, an elected office, for six years in the Eighties.)
3. Lieberman is currently employed by the law firm Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman, which specializes in white-collar criminal defense – and which frequently represents Donald Trump. Most recently, one of the firm's partners, Marc Kasowitz, threatened to sue The New York Times for running a story about women who accused Trump of sexual assault. If confirmed, Lieberman would be in charge of the agency conducting a criminal investigation into Trump's presidential campaign.
The only credible argument for nominating Joe Lieberman as FBI director is that the pick has a veneer of bipartisanship – Lieberman, an Independent, ran for vice president on the Democratic ticket in 2000 – and any nominee Trump names after unceremoniously dumping former director James Comey last week is expected to face extra scrutiny from Democrats. Trump appears to be betting that senators will be uncomfortable grilling their former colleague too hard about his qualifications for the job. Here's hoping members of the Senate prove him wrong.