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John Bolton’s bad mustache is just a bad excuse.

Bolton, one of Washington’s most belligerent hawks, sports a hairy caterpillar over his upper lip that makes him look like an escapee from a 1970s porn film. According to The Washington Post, Bolton’s mustache might have cost him the secretary of state job because President-elect Donald Trump is fastidious about the grooming of his employees:

Several of Trump’s associates said they thought that John R. Bolton’s brush-like mustache was one of the factors that handicapped the bombastic former United Nations ambassador in the sweepstakes for secretary of state.

“Donald was not going to like that mustache,” said one associate, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to speak frankly. “I can’t think of anyone that’s really close to Donald that has a beard that he likes.”

Can this be true? The fact is, Bolton’s extreme views, such as his repeated calls for the bombing of Iran, have raised the hackles of even Republican senators like Rand Paul (who threatened to block Bolton if he were nominated). Isn’t it more likely that Bolton’s mustache, far from being a deal-breaker, was just an excuse the Trump transition team cooked up to justify not pushing forward a nominee they knew would lose?