Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Sorry Larry Sabato, but You're Wrong

NewsMax gleefully reports that Larry Sabato, political analyst and professor at the University of Virginia thinks the latest Middle East flare-up bodes well for GOP chances in the fall.

It's rally-around-the-president-during-times-of-national-crisis mentality that could stymie Democratic gains, according to Sabato.

In times of international tension and trouble, there is a natural focus on the White House, and President Bush has the security credentials to take advantage of this issue on behalf of his party. Whether Bush fully does so remains to be seen.
News about the Israeli conflict also sucks all the air out of any bad news from Iraq.
Were it not for the bombs falling on Beirut and the rockets raining down on Haifa, the carnage throughout Iraq would be leading the news. GOP candidates would surely suffer from the chaos, just as they have been doing for a year or more.
Well, Howling Latina agrees the Israeli attack on Lebanon has created a virtual "blackout" of other news, but from the poll HL posted a few days ago, Americans do not want the United States to become involved in the latest maelstrom.

Sabato acknowledges that "Democrats can also score points from the conflict...Any failures in American diplomacy can be attributed in part to the nation's costly commitment in Iraq."
"The final electoral truth is that the Middle East war would somehow have to help President Bush and the Republican Congress to climb out of the polling cellar in the time remaining before Americans stream to the polls."
Poll after poll consistently shows Iraq is the main issue on voter's mind; and irrespective of the 24/7 media coverage, no Americans are dying, no taxpayers $$$ is being squandered and if anything, the latest crisis shows that the road to peace in the Middle East through Baghdad is a dismal and costly administration policy FAILURE.

Update: Looks like Dan Froomkin of the Washington Post and others agree with Howling Latina.

Actually, I agree that Larry Sabato called this one wrong. Even according to WaPo articles today, the Bush Administration looks weak and ineffective because of the deteriorating situation in the Middle East.

Condi Rice's efforts look like a failure.

It's just one more policy failure to add to a litany of them. And it looks even more like our bungling into Iraq for no good reason has weakened us, made us more unsafe, and hampered our ability to respond to real crises.

This simply looks more and more like an administration without a clue.
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