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Bush already embattled

Posted By Barbara Simpson On 01/08/2001 @ 1:00 am In Commentary | Comments Disabled

That’s what you get with a shotgun wedding. The preacher holds the Bible and makes it legal, but there’s no honeymoon. Not now. Not ever. Even though someone will get known in the biblical sense.

That’s where George W. Bush is. He won and Al Gore lost, though the die-hards still wail about stolen elections, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

Jesse Jackson (“The Reverend Mr.” to those who know and love him) is still out there waving the race card and Al Sharpton (et cetera, et cetera, et cetera) is raising the stakes with promises (threats?) of demonstrations on Inauguration Day and the possibility of even worse if white America doesn’t face up to what it has wrought.

What was wrought, in fact, was the election of a president. It was close but the vote that counted was clear. George W. Bush is the man and the other side isn’t happy.

What did you expect? This is the rhetoric from the side of the aisle that harps on the need for “diversity” in the new administration. They’re using the podiums of the reverends and the microphones of the pundits to spread the gospel of “non-partisanship.”

Non-what? Come on! These are words from the avatars of the left who never missed a lock-step in their support of Bill Clinton during the impeachment, Senate trial, legal depositions and assorted other scandals and mismanagements of the last eight years.

These are the preachments of those who practice hard-ball politics. They do it the old fashioned way. Plan to win; destroy the enemy. It hearkens to the Kennedy family adage: “Don’t get mad, get even.”

Actually, I like that point of view. Getting angry only makes you get upset, nervous and sometimes, if you’re not careful, ulcers. Republicans tend to get ulcers.

But if you keep your cool and plot your actions, you can accomplish much, keep it legal and get the result you want. It also has an element of revenge, which I admit has a certain ring to it!

This strategy is especially important if you are right, meaning correct on the issue. If you are not correct on the issue — well, then you have to do what the Democrats do: calculated destruction of the enemy.

The Clinton political history is littered with the names of those destroyed in the trek toward the Holy Grail of power which is the ultimate goal and ultimate aphrodisiac despite the varied Monicas on the way.

I remember a political seminar several years ago. The men leading the session (old-time politicos who’d weathered many tough election fights) said that in the end the only thing that matters is the final vote tally. You win or lose. It’s that simple. Hey, any kid knows that.

So why is there such a railing from the Democrats? Mainly because despite their scorched-earth, legal strategy they still didn’t win. Big Al and the legal mob did their best but it didn’t work and, boy, are they mad.

Remember the second half of that Kennedy motto: “get even.” That’s what’s in store; they’re out to get even and will try to hold the Bush feet to the fire. They’ll play all the cards: race, abortion, gender, economic, Middle East, Cabinet, bureaucracy, policy, philosophy — et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

Mr. Bush will be battered for any and all of his choices for his Cabinet and for department heads and policy decisions. That he has chosen men and women of a variety of skin colors and ethnic backgrounds (and, yes, even some Democrats) does not matter. They are not the right shade of skin color, not the right kind of man or woman, not the right branch of ethnic roots, and even, not the right Democrats.

The first real target of the assault on the new Bush administration is the nomination of John Ashcroft as attorney general. Deal the cards: race, equality, affirmative action, abortion, a woman’s right to choose, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

The fact that his record illustrates a long and honorable history of positive actions in the hot button areas means little. Attack, attack and attack again, even though the job is not to make law but to enforce it.

The truth is they’re frightened to death that Mr. Ashcroft may influence administration policy. They are frightened of Gov. Tommy Thompson for the same reason. “Oh my gosh. He’s opposed to abortion.”

If you disagree with liberals, especially on abortion, you should not have a role in policy and government. Oh, you can be there, just don’t have enough votes to matter. And by the way, just shut up please.

But as of Inauguration Day, people like that will have enough votes to matter. They will have the opportunity to clean house, to review the last eight years and to correct some of the disastrous policies that have left this country in great jeopardy. Abortion is not No. 1.

On the home front we face the possibility of a recession or worse, a deepening and angry racial divide, a weakened and under-supplied military, a crisis in property rights and the environment, eroding education policies and more.

Internationally there is the most real possibility of a Middle East War, a bubbling cauldron in Africa, military actions by Russia and China, and trade and military challenges in Europe that threaten historic cooperation.

So what do we hear one day after she is sworn in as the senator from New York? Hillary Clinton sounding off on the imminent threat to women’s right to abortion. Hope the GOP knows what it’s in for.


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