Friday, November 11, 2005

If your approval rating is in the toilet, and your opponents' approval rating is also pretty much in the toilet, do you really do yourself any good by saying you didn't actually screw up because your opponents participated in the same screwup?

President George W. Bush disputed allegations by Democrats that the White House twisted or misused prewar intelligence to justify the March 2003 invasion of Iraq.

"It is deeply irresponsible to rewrite the history of how the war began,'' Bush told military families at an Army depot near Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania today. "More than 100 Democrats in the House and Senate who had access to the same intelligence voted to remove Saddam Hussein from power.'' ...

This is the political equivalent of saying, "But Ma, Billy was doing it too!" (Needless to say, "Billy was doing it too!" is sometimes literally what Bush and his defenders say.) Here's Bush's message: In Iraq, we didn't do any worse than the Democrats would have done. Wow, that's a winning slogan for 2006 and 2008.

Comparing himself to a party widely believed to have no ideas and no backbone is not how Bush is going to get back above 40%. (And telling us for the 90,000th time that Iraq is "the central front in our war against the terrorists'' and that "as Iraqis stand up, Americans will stand down" ain't gonna do it either.)

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