Monday, January 26, 2009

Republican Strategy

E. J. Dionne has a column in the WaPo about how the Republicans are responding to Obama's victory. He says that they're taking a good cop/bad cop approach, with some compromising while others lay down the arguments for his defeat in case of failure. The worse of these have to do with a possible catastrophic terrorist attack:

The most insidious line of attack involves laying the groundwork for blaming the new president in the event of a terrorist attack.

In a remarkably partisan op-ed in The Post last Thursday, Marc A. Thiessen, who was a speechwriter for former president George W. Bush, declared flatly: "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."

This is dangerous, both substantively and politically, and it suggests that some of Bush's loyalists will continue to politicize issues related to terrorism in their efforts to vindicate the former president's legacy.

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