The Plank

The Loyal Opposition

Although conservatives like to complain about Bush Derangement Syndrome, I think it's worth remembering that, in the aftermath of 9/11, Democrats were very supportive of Bush. There are a lot of images I recall from that time, but one that remains especially seared in my head is Tom Daschle wrapping Bush in an embrace that seemed more heart-felt and emotional than the typical politician man-hug after the president's address to a Joint Session of Congress. America had come under attack, and Democrats weren't just rallying behind the flag; they were rallying behind the president--even though that president was a Republican.

All of which is a long way of getting around to this despicable op-ed from former Bush speechwriter Marc Thiessen in today's Washington Post. Titled "2,688 Days"--the number of days between 9/11 and Bush's final day in office, during which the U.S. didn't suffer any terrorist attacks--Thiessen makes the argument that, since Obama is likely to deviate from many of Bush's policies on Iraq and torture and wiretaps, if and when we suffer a terrorist attack in the next four years, then it will be Obama's fault:

If Obama weakens any of the defenses Bush put in place and terrorists
strike our country again, Americans will hold Obama responsible -- and
the Democratic Party could find itself unelectable for a generation. 

[snip]

President Obama has inherited a set of tools that successfully
protected the country for 2,688 days -- and he cannot dismantle those
tools without risking catastrophic consequences. On Tuesday, George W.
Bush told a cheering crowd in Midland, Tex., that his administration
had left office without another terrorist attack. When Barack Obama
returns to Chicago at the end of his time in office, will he be able to
say the same?

You almost get the sense guys like Thiessen are hoping for an attack so that they can blame Obama when it happens. Like I said, despicable.

--Jason Zengerle

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