Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Rice for president or just wake up Cheney?

An editorial in the LA Times on Sunday writes that it's time for "shotgun' Dick Cheney to exit stage right. "If president Bush hopes the "shake-up" of his administration initiated last week will re-energize his listless presidency, he's bound to be disappointed," the Times says. Apparently they think a far more audacious makeover is needed — one that sends Vice President Dick Cheney into early retirement. Moving the deck chairs around at the White House just isn't cutting it even for some supporters of Bush. And, once again, the specter of Condi Rice becoming vice-president is raising its ugly head. Washington Briefing quotes Sarah Baxter in the Sunday Times of London who writes that:

"Republicans are urging President George W Bush to dump Dick Cheney as vice-president and replace him with Condoleezza Rice if he is serious about presenting a new face to the jaded American public." She quotes Fred Barnes as saying "the president needs to do something shocking and dramatic such as putting in Condoleezza Rice."

Yeah, that would be a great idea, I'm all for it. Although the idea of having vice-president that could actually run as the GOP nominee must be enticing for some in the Party staring into the face of a midterm election debacle followed by a grueling nomination fight, Condi '08 would be a Republican electoral disaster of the Herbert Hoover variety. Once she becomes a candidate, all the pre-9/11 warnings she ignored and all the warning about Iraq's WMD is going to come back to haunt her. Just imagine how much footage there is out there of her warnings about mushroom clouds and --- my personal favorite --- her insistence that "I don't think that anybody could have predicted that these people would take an airplane and slam it into the World Trade Center." [USA Today]

The fact is that anyone from this administration who is associated as closely with Iraq is Condi is hasn't got a quail's chance in Texas of winning an election. People are going to be so sick of W. & Co. by 2008 that they'd even vote for John Kerry!

I'm not entirely sure that Cheney is going to survive the second term, or that he can stay awake long enough, but Condi isn't taking his place. There's no way John McCain will either, unless he chucks all of his integrity overboard and throws in with the Pat Robertson wing of the Party, which would neutralize his maverick appeal. Maybe, Bill Frist might be an option if the GOP loses the Senate. One might think that such a political failure would preclude this, but you never can tell; failure is always rewarded in this administration.


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