Maybe This Snowball Will Roll Down The Hill
There are many “When Will Gonzo Be Gone” betting pools floating around, and I haven’t been able to pick a date as of yet. I was going to go with this Friday, but that was before Bush blustered his way through a press conference yesterday, clearly annoyed at having his unitary executive power questioned and looking every bit the obstinate child ready to hold his breath until he gets his way. I’m glad now that I didn’t take Friday, because I’m starting to think Bush will keep Gonzales indefinitely, just out of spite.
Of course there will be the pressure from members of his own Party, especially those facing re-election next year, that could play a role, but remember, this is a man that just sent a surge of troops into the middle of the Iraqi civil war against the advice of just about everyone, including the commanders tasked with executing Bush’s disastrous war. When Bush digs in his heels, any reason he may have had to start with (which we all know wasn’t much) goes right out his flaring nostrils.
Now that Congress has decided to spit on Bush’s offer for a glorified coffee klatch with Karl Rove and Harriet Miers and instead go ahead and issue subpoenas, the real fireworks can begin. While keeping Gonzales on as Attorney General is a clear political loser for the President, he seems to think he’s got nothing to lose by playing a game of chicken with the Congress on the subpoenas, and I’m afraid he might be right, at least in the short term. The damage it will do his Party though, well, that’s another story altogether, one I’ll happily read each night at bedtime since it has such a happy ending.
One thing we know for sure, the Bushies are hiding something. There are missing emails, lies peddled to Congress, misleading and contradictory public statements, improper communications (arm twisting and probably illegal pressure) between Republican politicians and Prosecutors, some pretty pissed off former employees and a President that has exhibited over and over again his inability to (not to mention lack of interest in) dealing with public policy while simultaneously relishing in political battle, collateral damage be damned. This story has everything any good newsperson could possibly ask for! But then again, so have all the other scandals that have died on the vine.
I’ve heard some describe this confrontation as “a constitutional crisis”, and while I think that’s a little extreme at this point, I certainly hope it turns into that. What this country needs more than just about anything at this point, is a constitutional crisis with two opposing sides. For the last six years it has been a steady shredding of the constitution with very few paying attention to it, let alone doing anything substantive to stop it. A showdown between Congress and the White House could actually pique the interest of traditional media that loves a good scandal, especially one that has serial drama potential. I’d love to see reporters and television “news” shows delve into every detail of this fight the way they did with the death of Anna Nicole and her multiplying baby-daddies (only the most recent of the serial drama cases they’ve glommed onto for no apparent reason). In fact, it would be so good for our democracy that it’s virtually guaranteed not to happen. Cynical? Sure, but you’ve lived through the Bush presidency too, can you really say you blame me?