Thursday, March 15, 2007

Poor Alberto Gonzales

Apparently even Conservatives aren't keen on him, which implies he may not be long for his current position. Steve Chapman's latest article, over at Townhall, talks about Gonzales's weaknesses.
What bodes particularly ill for the attorney general is that even conservative Republicans in Congress are furious. New Hampshire Sen. John Sununu pronounced the administration's handling of this matter "unacceptable." Nevada Sen. John Ensign said he was "very angry" about the dismissal of the prosecutor in his state. Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma said the firing of the U.S. attorneys amounted to "idiocy."

When you start getting reviews like that from people in your own party, you're entering the land of the living dead, which was so recently occupied and then vacated by Donald Rumsfeld. A Cabinet official who becomes a gross liability may find that even Bush's loyalty has limits.
Conservatives tend towards discipline; if a conservative columnist is willing to be this blunt about Gonzales's chances, well, I think we should take it as read that he's in real trouble.

I think his biggest problem, though, is the appearance that he's 100% Bush's man, and that's not the plus it used to be.
This attorney general owes almost everything to George W. Bush -- who brought him on as his legal adviser when he was governor of Texas, appointed him to the state supreme court, gave him the job of White House counsel and installed him at Justice. It's about as easy to imagine Gonzales standing up to the president as it is to picture Mickey Mouse biting Walt Disney.
He's not wrong. I think though that political considerations may not run as high in this White House right now, though. President Bush is, if not a lame duck, at least waddling with a limp. And he doesn't have a successor running in 2008. So political concerns may not motivate him as much as they once would have.

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