The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

The Libby Conviction: Well, This Will Be Fun For Democrats To Cite on the Campaign Trail


Let me take the ball from Jonathan Martin and run with it.


Let’s say you’re a Reagan Democrat. Let’s say you pulled the lever for Bush in 2004, even though you had some worries about Iraq, because you just weren’t comfortable with the thought of John Kerry leading the country on a war on terror. Since then you have seen:

  • Harriet Miers, a woman who was a perfectly nice White House counsel nominated to the highest court in the land, leapfrogging slews of well-regarded federal judges, each with considerable support in the conservative base.
  • Katrina. Yes, the media reporting was wildly inaccurate and sensationalistic, but the overall image of the president and his administration was out-of-touch, disconnected from events, slow to react, etc. We’re seeing massive amounts of money misspent in the reconstruction, as well as endless complaints that the city isn’t being rebuilt fast enough.
  • Iraq, and an increasing sense that the only folks who really want a stable, democratic, pluralistic state and who are willing to fight for it in Iraq are the Americans. The Sunni, Shia, and Kurds all seem to be putting their factional interest above any sense of national unity, and don’t seem interested in building anything greater than a tribal spoil system. The Brits and the rest of the coalition are increasingly saying, “okay, we’re done, we’ve done all we can do.” There is a growing sense that with no WMDs and the ties to terrorists hotly disputed, the purpose of the mission is a sort of Wilsonian nation-building that the country clearly didn’t believe it was signing on for in 2003.
  • A 2006 election debacle, in which Republicans were largely wiped from office from the entire northeast and slammed in places like Iowa, Indiana, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
  • A report of horrific conditions in veterans’ care, one more sledgehammer’s blow to the belief that the Republican Party, with all its ties to business, are natural managers and administrators…
  • And now, the Vice President’s chief of staff convicted.

Let me also offer that there’s a housing bubble about to burst (not necessarily the president’s fault, but he certainly hasn’t taken actions to mitigate that inflating bubble, much less talk about it much), and the reverberating economic effects of that…


Even if you like this president, even if you’re pulling for him, even if you think his heart is in the right place… is there any way this presidency doesn’t look pretty disastrous at this moment?

UPDATE: I guess I shouldn’t worry… Bush’s legacy can be saved by comprehensive immigration reform! Bleahhhh…

Tags: Barack Obama , Bill Richardson , Chris Dodd , Fred Thompson , Hillary Clinton , Horserace , Joe Biden , John Edwards , John McCain , Mike Huckabee , Mitt Romney , Newt Gingrich , Rudy Giuliani , Sarah Palin , Something Lighter , Tommy Thompson


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