I put Middle Earth Journal in hiatus in May of 2008 and moved to Newshoggers.
I temporarily reopened Middle Earth Journal when Newshoggers shut it's doors but I was invited to Participate at The Moderate Voice so Middle Earth Journal is once again in hiatus.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Howard Fineman - Good Question, Bad Answer!

Howard Fineman asks a really good question:
Why is President Bush risking a nasty battle within his own party over immigration reform?
Now Howard has an idea that is not only wrong but silly.
June 12, 2007 - Though I’ve never heard him use the term, my guess is that George W. Bush sees himself as a hacendado, an estate owner in Old Mexico.

That would give him a sense of Southwestern noblesse, duty-bound not just to work “his” people, but to protect them as well.

His advisor, Carlo Rove, has explained that a system called “democracy” now gives peasants something called “the vote.” It would be shrewd, Rove said, for hacendados to grant their workers’ citizenship.

That’s the best explanation I have for why Bush is in the midst of what may be a suicide mission on immigration policy—embarrassing for him and ruinous for his party.
OK, that's Howard's best and it's just plane silly in addition to being dead wrong.

Now Howard gets a little closer to the truth hear but still no cigar.
An ungrateful base
Long ago, when he was running for governor, Bush told me that he was a “southwestern” Republican, not a “southern” one. As a son of the southwest, he wants employers to have access to all of that cheap labor, but wants to make the system more orderly, at least not cruel. He hopes (as he did as governor) to get credit for wisdom.

It infuriates Bush when people—in his own party, no less—are not grateful for what he sees as an act of heartfelt, enlightened generosity and foresighted management.
Well maybe a cheap cigar - Howard does touch on Bush's adolescent nature. I'm right because I said so. Anyone who has raised teenagers is familiar with that attitude. And then there is this typical teenage male behavior.
So he sounded like the Texas gunslinger he pretended to be as a kid when he squared off against GOP foes of his sweeping immigration proposal. His timing was perfect, as in wrong, just as he was preparing to attend the Senate Republicans’ weekly luncheon on the Hill. “I’ll see you at the bill signing,” he said, chestier than usual.

He might live to regret such playground bravado. If you are president, the only thing worse than issuing a public threat to your own party is failing to make it stick.
Now Bush has gotten away with it for six years but he may not be able to make it stick now.

Well Mr Fineman came close to the correct answer but I wonder if he knew it.


It appears it really is suicide.
Republicans abandoning Bush
In the poll, Bush’s approval rating is at just 29 percent. It’s a drop of six points since April, and it represents his lowest mark ever on this question in the NBC/Journal poll.

Democratic pollster Jay Campbell, who works with Hart, attributes this decline to Republicans. Back in April, 75 percent of Republicans approved of Bush’s job performance, compared with 21 percent who disapproved. Now, only 62 percent of Republican approve, versus 32 percent who disapprove.

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