Monday, September 11


Blow me down. Brit Hume (Fox News) just asked his panel of Fred Barnes (The Weekly Standard, Mort Kondracke (Roll Call and Mara Liasson (NPR) what caused the rapid polarization in the U.S. after the unity brought on by the 9/11 attacks. Mort Kondracke attributed it to the actions of George W. Bush prior to the 2002 midterm elections. He said the Democrats wanted a Homeland Security department, Bush didn't, then he flipped and supported it but insisted in legislation that would have blocked extension of civil service protection and collective bargaining in the new department, which every other government agency honors. Dems insisted that those protections be included in the bill, and Bush used that stance to attack them as "weak on terrorism," which was, he said, the genesis of the polarization. And that, he added, is where the politicization of the war on terrorism began. Mara Liasson agreed. Fred, naturally, demurred, calling them little puny rules (Mort and Mara protested loudly). Mara said, that's what the legislative process is all about, and the Rethugs could have compromised but chose to attack Dems instead.

Mort went on to declare that Dubya has, over the past years, given the Democrats "plenty" to object to, including Iraq.



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