For those who have long thought that the attorney general is not the smartest person on the planet, today's big Washington Post story on Dick Cheney has not one but two fun tidbits. First: Powell asked for a meeting with Bush. The same day, Jan. 25, 2002, Cheney's office struck a preemptive blow. It appeared to come from Gonzales, a longtime Bush confidant whom the president nicknamed "Fredo." And here's John Yoo showing skill in deploying euphemisms (something he is distrubingly good at): Gonzales, a former Texas judge, had the seniority and the relationship with Bush.
Turns out The Onion's absurd top story this week ("Bush Calls for Development of National Air Conditioner") might not be very far from the truth.
Jonah Goldberg approvingly cites a Jeff Jacoby column that makes the following argument: On one important issue after another, the right churns with serious disputes over policy and principle, while the left marches mostly in lockstep. Liberals sometimes disagree over tactics and details, but anyone taking a heterodox position on a major issue can find himself out in the cold. Just ask Senator Joseph Lieberman .In the liberal imagination, conservatives are blind dogmatists, spouters of a party line fed to them by (take your pick) big business, their church, or President Bush.
Talk about your bad days. Not only did Rudy's South Carolina campaign chairman ride off on the white horse; he lost his Iowa campaign chairman as well: Jim Nussle has been tapped to serve as White House budget director. Which raises an interesting question: what's worse--getting indicted on crack* cocaine charges? or going to work for the Bush administration in a job once held by Mitch Daniels? *Late reports indicate that, contra my Bob Roberts joke yesterday, Ravenel was charged with distributing good old fashioned cocaine, not crack. --Jason Zengerle
I think the Gore-Obama ticket was my idea. Maybe it was the idea of thousands of people. It's so obvious. My ripple was that they should (or should have) run together in the caucuses and the primaries. If anything spooks Hillary, it's Al Gore sprinting for the nomination. Gore-Obama, that would throw her out of the ring. And even her dragged-along supporters would heave a big sigh of relief. Bill Clinton himself thinks that Gore is ready to run. And this spooks Bill, too. His dream of a third term in the White House (and a fourth?) would be shattered.
So it looks like Ed Gillespie is going to work at the White House. Yeah, I know: big whoop. I'm only mentioning it because I wanted an excuse to refer back to something I heard Don King say during those strange days in the 2004 presidential campaign when he was the Bush campaign's liaison to black America. Speaking of the uber-lobbyist and Republican apparatchick, King declared: "[I]n Ed Gillespie you can hear the word of Jesus cry, 'I've been anointed to deal with the problems of the poor!'" It's a wonder he's not going to work for John Edwards. P.S.
Chuck Schumer's no-confidence-in-Gonzales vote went down tonight, 53 -38 (falling short of the 60 needed for the increasingly elusive cloture).
Zachary Roth says NBC News correspondent David Gregory saved the White House press corps (he also collects videos of Gregory's classic scuffles with Bush and his flacks); Linda Hirshman says that Rahm Emanuel is a modern-day Aristotle; Elizabeth McCaughey criticizes Jonathan Cohn's defense of Hillarycare; Peter Beinart and Jonah Goldberg ask whether the debates are a waste of time; and, in our third excerpt from his book Power and the Idealists, Paul Berman chronicles Bernard Kouchner's creation of Doctors Without Borders. --Alexander M. Belenky
by Sanford LevinsonThe latest CBS/New York Times poll conducted between May 18-23 shows the "favorable" rating of Vice President Dick Cheney at a record low. See here. Perhaps the White House takes heart that the "not favorable" rating has actually dropped because the "undecided"s and "haven't heard"s went up by a total 14 points.
White House communications director to resign July 4. "It's been a hell of a ride," Bartlett told Reuters--but I wonder if he meant was: "It's been hell." --Michael Crowley