The EU looks ridiculous...
They pick a complete novice to be their foreign affairs minister...
The appointment as a little-known peer to become Europe's first "foreign minister" stunned and dismayed many in Westminster today, prompting a barrage of briefing against Britain's most senior female politician.But, then Hillary Clinton became Secretary of State...
Gordon Brown looks likely to draw little credit from his Labour colleagues for installing Baroness Ashton of Upholland, the EU trade commissioner who has never held elected office, into the post of High Representative for Foreign Policy and Security.
"To think that we wanted Blair and we ended up with Cathy Ashton. It's such an indictment of Gordon," said one member of the government hours after the appointment was announced.
Lady Ashton emerged from the pack after European Socialist leaders confirmed their veto of Tony Blair but said that Britain could have the second job instead. As part of the horse trading Herman Van Rumpoy, the centre right's choice to be president, was given a virtual clear run once leaders sat down for dinner last night.
Speaking publicly for the first time this morning, she acknowledged that she was yet to establish her credentials for the job.
"Over the next few months and years I aim to show that I am the best person for the job," she told BBC Radio 4's Today programme.
"I think for quite a few people they would say that I am the best person for the job and I was chosen because I am, but I absolutely recognise there are a number of candidates around, all of whom would have been extremely good, extremely able.
"I hope that my particular set of skills will show that in the end I am the best choice."
However her conciliatory tone did not prevent a welter of stories about her career as a loyal Labour peer.
According to one source, one of her first acts after becoming Labour leader in the Lords was to lock the door between her new office and the Chief Whip.