David Kirkpatrick

July 5, 2010

Karl Rove, fiscal hypocrite

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:27 pm

Of course that should surprise absolutely no one who paid any fiscal attention from 2001 to January 2009.

Daniel Mitchell blogging at Cato@Liberty rips Rove a new one for essentially doing what he always does — pretending the unfathomable fiscal recklessness of the Bush 43 years never happened.

From the link:

Rove has zero credibility on these issues. In the excerpt below, Rove attacks Obama for earmarks, but this corrupt form of pork-barrel spending skyrocketed during the Bush years. Rove rips Obama for government-run healthcare, but Rove helped push through Congress a reckless new entitlement for prescription drugs. He attacks Obama for misusing TARP, but the Bush administration created that no-strings-attached bailout program.

February 16, 2010

Contra Cheney and Rove …

Filed under: Business, Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:02 pm

… deficits don’t matter, until they do.

From the link:

Now policymakers’ work is infinitely harder as they wake up to the realization that they must deal soon with the country’s long-term fiscal problems.

At stake ultimately is the United States’ status as a first-class economy.

May 1, 2009

Ed Crane on the GOP

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 2:01 pm

This is about as good an explanation on what happened to the GOP over the last ten years or so as you’ll find anywhere — Edward H. Crane, president of the Cato Institute, on Obama as a statist and where the Republican Party has gone wrong.

The only major factor he left out is Karl Rove’s horrible, and failed, plan for a “permanent GOP majority” (and what a joke that phrase sounds like only a few years later) that entailed pissing off 49.9% of the population and winning every race by the thinnest of margins.

It could be argued Rove’s plan unraveled when he lost control of the immigration debate and rogue party members ruined his Latino plan. It can also be argued (with better internals) that the GOP never had the Latino vote in a bloc as large as was advertised. As it turns out Bush 41 did better among the Hispanic vote than Bush 43, a rarely explored or aired fact.

Here’s Crane’s excellent analysis from the link:

Time for those conservatives serious about limited government to re-read Goldwater’s Conscience of a Conservative. Strategically, conservatives have made three major mistakes. The first was to follow the advice of supply-side guru (and big-government Democrat) Jude Wanniski and not talk about spending cuts, much less the proper role of government. Economic growth replaced individual liberty as the rallying cry of far too many GOPers. Second, the neocons — mostly statists themselves — should never have been accepted into the fold. All they give us is a war against a country that never attacked us and schemes for “national greatness” like going to Mars. Enough. Finally, conservatives should jettison the social agenda of gay marriage, flag burning, and school prayer, and focus instead on federalism. Politics is about man’s relationship to the state. That relationship, to be healthy, should be minimal

January 31, 2009

Bush, a wing and a prayer

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 2:26 pm

Good luck with this ridiculous attempt to assert executive privilege for eternity. There might not be any “there” there, but boy it doesn’t pass any smell test — it does smack of desperately hoping to cover criminal activity.

I’m guessing as a little more time passes there will be many administration insiders with copies of documents coming forward hoping to get in front of any investigation into crimes committed over the last eight years of White House occupancy.

From the link:

Newsweek‘s Michael Isikoff reports that just a few days before leaving the White House, President George W. Bush sent a very interesting letter to former aide Karl Rove:

On Jan. 16, 2009, then White House Counsel Fred Fielding sent a letter (.pdf) to Rove’s lawyer, Robert Luskin. The message: should his client receive any future subpoenas, Rove “should not appear before Congress” or turn over any documents relating to his time in the White House. The letter told Rove that President Bush was continuing to assert executive privilege over any testimony by Rove—even after he leaves office.

Here’s Yale law professor Jack Balkin’s response:

The fact that Bush sent these letters while he was still president makes no difference. He is no longer president. The claim of absolute immunity he is making (as opposed to executive privilege, which is not absolute) would be controversial even if offered by a sitting president, but it is even more so when offered by a former president.

November 28, 2008

Will Bush pardon Rove?

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 11:04 am

My gut tells me yes, but it could easily fall either way. It’d be craven, but no more craven than pretty much every other president has acted at one time or another.

A preemptive pardon would be sold as keeping “the architect” from unfounded partisan attacks, but the reality is history will almost certainly see that move as an acknowledgement Rove, and by association the entire Bush 43 administration, was knee-deep in illegal and unconstitutional activities for a number of years. That stain will never be washed away.

There’s a little to like about the Bush 43 years and a whole lot not to like, but the defining action of the outgoing administration is authorizing torture. George W. Bush is the first United States president ever — ever — to authorize torture under the auspices of our nation. Taking a long view I doubt anyone would say Islamo-terrorism is/has been the greatest threat this country has ever faced, but until Bush 43 no president saw fit morally or tactically to institute a program of systematic torture applied to potentially innocent captives.

No rule of law, no rule of human decency and no real objectives at the end of the day other than to detain and torture prisoners who might (and you better believe some are) or might not (and you also better believe we’re destroying some innocent lives) be guilty of conspiring against the USA. The utter lack of judicial oversight — military or civilian — ensures no one knows the truth of guilt or innocence.

So at the end of the day will Bush pardon “the architect?” I guess we’ll know sometime in the next two months.

From the link:

Should Rove be indicated by the special prosecutor before January 20, 2009 (unlikely) or should the House Judiciary Committee seek and receive a contempt of Congress charge, which it could do (veryunlikely), that would make Bush’s decision to pardon Rove easier. “I think Bush pardons Rove on his last day in office regardless,” says George Shipley, a longtime political foe of Rove in Texas. “Bush has to pardon a hundred guys—washboarders, torturers, lawyers who wrote the opinions on torture, the White House political staff who violated the Hatch Act. And Rove.”

Others disagree. “I would think Bush would not want to further damage his presidency by clearing the hired help,” Roger Stone says. “Bush Senior’s pardoning of Casper Weinberger is different. Weinberger was secretary of defense and a social peer of the Bush family. Karl is still the hired help.” What’s more, Bush may not be pleased with the way his presidency has turned out. “Rove is the architect of Bush’s current unpopularity,” Stone says. “He is the architect of failure. Bush might want the judgment of history to be on Karl as well as himself.”

As such, Rove may have worries separate from potential indictments or a possible presidential pardon: his legacy. Within the Republican Party, he is now viewed by many as the mastermind behind one of the greatest collapses of a political party in American history—losing both chambers of Congress in 2006, now the presidency.

August 7, 2008

This development in the DOJ inquiry …

Filed under: Politics — Tags: , , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 5:35 pm

does not bode well for the Bush 43 administration. It looks less and less likely the stench of cronyism and corruption surrounding the current group in the White House will just go away after the election.

From the link:

Murray Waas confirmed today something we’ve suspected for a long time: that the Justice Department has widened the net in the Inspector General’s U.S. attorneys firing probe to include allegations that senior White House officials made false statements to Congress.

From the Huffington Post:

The Justice Department investigation into the firings of nine U.S. attorneys has been extended to encompass allegations that senior White House officials played a role in providing false and misleading information to Congress, according to numerous sources involved in the inquiry.. . . Federal investigators have obtained documents showing that Kyle Sampson, then-chief of staff to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, and Chris Oprison, then an associate White House counsel, drafted and approved the letter even though they had first-hand knowledge that the assertions were not true.


The letter referenced was sent from the Justice Department to Congress on February 23, 2007and denied Karl Rove’s involvement in the replacement of fired U.S. Attorney Bud Cummins by Rove protege Tim Griffin.

Just a month later, however, the DOJ was forced to admit that the February letter had been “contradicted by Department documents.”

July 1, 2008

The Rove legacy

Filed under: Media, Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 3:42 pm

If anyone wants to start pointing fingers at the broken GOP, Karl Rove isn’t a bad place to start. He pretty much took a fragile three-legged stool and busted it apart. His fifty percent-plus one strategy guaranteed the Republican brand means nothing. The religious right branch received just enough lip service to scare away the libertarian wing, and Rove’s attempt to embrace the Latino vote only served to unleash a virulent backlash within the party that ensures that vote is solidly Democratic for at least one generation.

Here’s a quick interview with Paul Alexander, a biographer of Rove.

From the link:

Republican leaders have described the Bush brand as “toxic.” Party insiders view Rove harshly. “I think the legacy,” Ed Rollins told me for my book, “is that Karl Rove will be a name that’ll be used for a long, long time as an example of how not to do it, as opposed to an example of how to do it….I think, at the end of this, the party will be weaker in numbers in the Congress, numbers of governors, numbers of state legislatures, and numbers of Republicans. He did little to attract young people to become Republicans. Anybody who’s a Republican today became a Republican during the Reagan era. Nobody who’s come of age during the Bush era will stand up and say, ‘I’m a Bush Republican. I’m going to spend the rest of my life being a Bush Republican.’” What’s more, John McCain, an otherwise attractive candidate, will have to distance himself from Bush significantly if not completely in the fall in order to have a chance of winning.

May 28, 2008

I’m going to guess this result ..

Filed under: Media, Politics — Tags: , , , , — David Kirkpatrick @ 5:51 pm

… was not part of Scott McClellan’s memoir calculus. The one-time press secretary has raised some pretty serious charges. If the Bush 43 administration used any measure of the ridiculous political calculation that only war-time presidents can be considered “great, impeachment is the only real option. The cost in lives — both US and Iraqi — and in national treasure is never worth a project in vanity. Sounds like something Iraq’s previous leader, or maybe North Korea’s “dear leader” would gin up.
From the link:

“The admissions made by Scott McClellan in his new book are earth-shattering and allege facts to establish that Karl Rove and Scooter Libby – and possibly Vice President Cheney –  conspired to obstruct justice by lying about their role in the Plame Wilson matter and that the Bush Administration deliberately lied to the American people in order to take us to war in Iraq. Scott McClellan must now appear before the House Judiciary Committee under oath to tell Congress and the American people how President Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, Karl Rove, Scooter Libby, and White House officials deliberately orchestrated a massive propaganda campaign to sell the war in Iraq to the American people.”