Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
October 27, 2005
LAW: Miers is Out

CNN reports. A tough day for the White House, but tough days happen in politics. The party, the president and the courts will be stronger for this.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 9:27 AM | Law 2005 | Comments (13) | TrackBack (1)
Comments

I think Harry Reid is starting to gain Rove-like status for the Democratic party. Dude knows how to play this game, that's for sure, and he's starting to get this administration to start talking to itself in the mirror. Agree that it was the only choice this administration had, and the timing had to be before indictments or it would look like they were hiding something. It was his only move, and props to Krauthammer for coming up with a great strategy of getting out of this mess for the Bush team.

Posted by: AstrosFan at October 27, 2005 11:31 AM

Nice Job Crank. I think your screed provided the final blow to poor Harriet's chances. Now, get ready for the bench clearing brawl called for by Pat Buchanan. At this point, what else can the president do except put his hat on backwards, kick some dirt on the umpire and instruct his reliever to pitch inside, way inside? Can anyone recall a more horribillis annus for a president in the last 25 years?

Posted by: patrick at October 27, 2005 12:58 PM

This is up there with Clinton's 1998, Reagan's 1987 and Bush I's 1992.

I don't think Bush needs to pick a fight, but he needs to pick a nominee who is worth fighting for. Bush won the battle over Roberts because it was a fight the Dems would have looked terrible fighting. Even if Miers would have been a good win - which I disagree with - she was a bad loss, and not a good nominee to fight behind because her qualifications were not self-evident and she had few committed supporters. If you don't pick a nominee you want to fight over, your opponents will know they can beat you by fighting. Sun Tzu would never have picked Miers.

I'd prefer McConnell among the people with clearly conservative paper trails - he's mild-mannered and well-liked by liberal law profs, he's been confirmed with less of a battle than Owen or Brown, and he knows more about con law even than Roberts. McConnell might provoke a fight, but it's a fight on Bush's terms, and one Bush could lose with his head held high. If Bush prefers a non-white-male or a candidate with less of a paper trail, he should look for someone about whom the same could be said.

Posted by: The Crank at October 27, 2005 1:11 PM

Crank:

Has Specter or Leahy or the administration talked about a short list for the nominee? If so sho is included?

Posted by: Phanatic at October 27, 2005 1:22 PM

Go see RedState for rumor central. I know the WH has been re-vetting candidates, but no idea who they have talked to.

Posted by: The Crank at October 27, 2005 1:44 PM

Does Carter's 1980 count as the last 25 years? If so, I think that's still the "standard" to judge against. Can't agree re Clinton '98, if only because he was fine from a policy perspective -- the country was humming along.

People forget now, but sandwiched between the huge election day win in '80 and the glory days of '83-'85, Reagan had a tough go in '81-'82. Don't forget that in addition to a crushing recession, he was nearly assassinated. Plus, names like Watt & Haig are good for a snicker now, but Reagan's legacy wasn't cemented at that point; he caught heat for some of the clowns in his cabinet at the time.

Posted by: Mike at October 27, 2005 3:34 PM

Yes, every presidency has its low points. But I wonder if GWB can bounce back. He's played all his cards - education reform, tax cuts, war on terror, sosal security(sic), medicare prescription drugs, supreme court nominees. What's he got left?

He's not competent enough to tackle any of the real problems facing the country - the health care crisis, nuclear proliferation, global warming, mounting deficits.

Look at Social Security. Any president with an ounce of sense could have solved Social Security's problems on the back of an envelope, pulled the votes together, end of story. Heck, FDR created the program in a few months. But instead, GWB invests all his politcal capital in it and comes away with nothing.

This guy will go down as the Warren G. Harding of the 21st Century.

Posted by: patrick at October 27, 2005 8:54 PM

Look at Social Security. Any president with an ounce of sense could have solved Social Security's problems on the back of an envelope, pulled the votes together, end of story.

Easy as pie. (Rolls eyes.)

I give GWB credit for trying to tackle that one, even though he was all but certain to get beaten down by the scare tactics of the left.

Posted by: Patterico at October 28, 2005 12:30 AM

"I give GWB credit for trying to tackle that one, even though he was all but certain to get beaten down by the scare tactics of the left."

You give him credit for proposing a half-measured, tepid privatization plan? An allowance of 4% placed in stocks and bonds for only a handful of younger workers hardly begins to address the inefficiencies of social security.

Personally, I would much rather see him attempt to tackle the mounting deficit, but in place of doing that, he has sit idly by as our supposed 'conservative' legislative branch continues to pass bloated spending bills(see transportation)...all signed into law by a 'conservative' president who got elected, however slimly, in 2000 on a platform which vowed to do away with the excessive spending in Washington.

Save me the flaccid talking points, such as "leftist scare tactics undermining our message", and serve up some vision. If Bush's privatization plan included a coherent solvency plan, we wouldn't be moaning about the lack of success on the issue.

I here a lot about Bush being a "Texas gunslinger who, although you may disagree with him, you always know where he stands". All of the pundits and administration backers say it, but those words ring hollow when you look upon the substance dished out by this administration this second term. The presidency, senate and house all in GOP hands, and all we can offer up is plattitudes and sloganry.

Once upon a time republicans were the minority party which attempted to hold off the money grubbing spenders. Once upon a time republicans stood for lowering deficits. Now we here these lines on the stumps when the pols attempt to get elected, but none of these words are put into practice when it is time to govern.

Maybe Harriet's dump and the impending indictments will do good to shake up this fractured party. All of the power is in our hands and those we have elected as our GOP representatives have squandered it as a result of self-indulgence and a lack of vision.

Pardon me, but "scare tactics of the left"-seriously, you're blaming the inept, powerless democratic party?- are not the source of our ruin. To take a baseball analogy, we're blowing our lead(like the Giants in 2002...still makes me sick).

Posted by: SplashHit at October 28, 2005 5:26 AM

RE: Patterico says "Easy as pie. (Rolls eyes.)

Social Security barely cracks the top twenty for either most serious problems facing the country or most difficult to solve.

Its an income transfer with very few hidden variables. Money in. Money out. In 2016 or so, less money will start going in than coming out, "Oh dear! Head for the hills!!!" Well then either cut benefits (or raise the age, or implement means testing) OR raise the SS tax (or increase the amount of income its applied to beyond $90K) PROBLEM SOLVED.

Its the Education Reform of Bush's second term - something he actually understood that made him feel presidential while ignoring all the real problems facing the country.

Posted by: patrick at October 28, 2005 8:20 AM

If the Bush Administration paralells the movie Goodfellas, which I think it does, right now they're playing the Rolling Stones' Gimme Shelter as a beaten down GWB races to Camp David (only instead of helicopters flying over head, GWB is in the helicopter).

Who would you like to see counseling W this weekend at Camp David, helping him to salvage his presidency? Personally, I think its a job for the old man, GHWB, and maybe Jeb. Every one else is damaged goods.

Posted by: patrick at October 28, 2005 1:22 PM

Along these same lines, I have the solution for the deficit:

Spend less. PROBLEM SOLVED.

Posted by: Patterico at October 28, 2005 11:52 PM

But you see, the deficit is already an absolute mess; each year we spend about a quarter trillion less than we take in. With SS, we'll run about a $50 billion dollar deficit in about 12-14 years. The former is a much more challenging problem, and one that our president is not seriously up to.

In fact as a country, the only way we'll dig our way out is the same way we dug out of RR's deficits: an off the charts booming economy like in the 90s AND a president responsible enough to face reality and raise taxes (eg GHWB and BC).

If these two events don't occur, we'll spend more and more of our tax dollars on interest payments to the Chinese.

One of the many instances where Dick Cheney was dead wrong was when he said, "deficits don't matter."

Is it too late for the United States to file under old bankruptcy laws?

Posted by: patrick at October 29, 2005 8:04 AM
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