Yet another Washington career has been sidetracked by résumé “enhancement.” Elizabeth O’Bagy, a young researcher at the Institute for the Study of War, became instantly famous last week when her Wall Street Journal op-ed on intervention in Syria was drawn on by both Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Secretary of State John Kerry in congressional hearings.
Alas, a few days later O’Bagy was fired by the institute for saying she had a doctorate when in fact she didn’t. She told Politico on Monday that she had submitted and defended her dissertation and was waiting for her degree.
Résumé puffery, major or minor, is quite common, especially in Washington. Lawmakers often get in hot water for things like embellishing military service: Take Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), whose campaign was almost derailed by reports he had indicated he had been in Vietnam, or Rep. Wes Cooley (R-Ore.), who lost his seat after claiming he had served in Korea.
And then there’s our favorite, California hotelier Larry Lawrence, who died while serving as President Bill Clinton’s ambassador to Switzerland and whose body was exhumed from Arlington National Ceremony when it turned out he had lied about being in the Merchant Marine during World War II..