"Where's The Beef"? The Bush/Cheney cabal will change nothing on their own while still in office. Neither one of them gives a damned about the Republican Party or the country. If the Republican lawmakers really want to change the course rather than stay the course they will have to do it with the only weapon they have available, the budget. The democrats can't and won't do it on their own - it's up to the Republicans to walk the walk. Will Lugar and others be willing to do that in September?Matthew Yglesias thinks it's really too late for them anyway.
It's frustrating to see this level of attention given by the MSM and the Huffington Post alike to the theory that GOP Senators are taking on Bush over the war. I was writing about this yesterday and have a Guardian column out about it but we're way past the point for this kind of B.S.I don't see any indication that the Republican tribe is ready to take on Bush in a meaningful way - the tribe still comes first even if it leads over a cliff. But Matt is right, it's too late anyway. That includes my own Senator Gordon Smith. Talking the talk is simply not enough.
Democrats had a bill that passed congress that would have substantially rolled back the war. Bush vetoed it. The GOP helped Bush sustain that veto. When Republicans want to revisit that legislation and vote to override Bush's veto, then they'll be breaking with Bush on Iraq. Until then, both the ones talking a good game and the ones talking bad one are, in fact, backing the president.
What's more, it seems to me that we're well passed the point where any political purpose is avdanced in a useful way by deliberately exaggerating the extent of intra-GOP disagreement. Before the 2004 election was a good time to hear about Republican dissent. Before the 2006 election, even. But folks who wait until after an electoral drubbing to start distancing themselves from their party's leaders don't deserve to be hailed as great independent thinkers.