Skip to comments.Ex-Aides Say Bush Never Recovered from Katrina
Posted on 12/29/2008 8:54:24 PM PST by marshmallow
WASHINGTON Hurricane Katrina not only pulverized the Gulf Coast in 2005, it knocked the bully pulpit out from under President George W. Bush, according to two former advisers who spoke candidly about the political impact of the government's poor handling of the natural disaster.
"Katrina to me was the tipping point," said Matthew Dowd, Bush's pollster and chief strategist for the 2004 presidential campaign. "The president broke his bond with the public. Once that bond was broken, he no longer had the capacity to talk to the American public. State of the Union addresses? It didn't matter. Legislative initiatives? It didn't matter. P.R.? It didn't matter. Travel? It didn't matter."
Dan Bartlett, former White House communications director and later counselor to the president, said: "Politically, it was the final nail in the coffin."
Their comments are a part of an oral history of the Bush White House that Vanity Fair magazine compiled for its February issue, which hits newsstands in New York and Los Angeles on Wednesday, and nationally on Jan. 6. Vanity Fair published comments by current and former government officials, foreign ministers, campaign strategists and numerous others on topics that included Iraq, the anthrax attacks, the economy and immigration.
Lawrence Wilkerson, top aide and later chief of staff to former Secretary of State Colin Powell, said that as a new president, Bush was like Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the 2008 GOP vice presidential nominee whom critics said lacked knowledge about foreign affairs. When Bush first came into office, he was surrounded by experienced advisers like Vice President Dick Cheney and Powell, who Wilkerson said ended up playing damage control for the president.
"It allowed everybody to believe that this Sarah Palin-like president because, let's face it, that's what he was was going to be protected....
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I'm no big fan of George but these ex-aides aren't worth a damn.
I’m with you....hardly his worst moment.
I’m thinking if it was a get out the vote effort to elect more dems, those buses would have been used.
Katrina as “Bush’s Failure” is a load of hogwash.
No one has recovered from Katrina
Comments to me by people who work around him on a daily basis: “dumb as a box of rocks..he does what the people around him tell him to do”
Actually it was getting bad advice from moles like these that was Bush’s undoing.
Let's face it, The GOP in the Bush era is rife with lowlife RINO bureaucrats.
Given the fact he had NO POWER to act until their idiot Governor asked for it, it isn’t applicable. Just another nail in the Constitution Coffin as far as the socialists go.
George Bush warned both Mayor Nagin and Governor Blanco that they ought to evacuate people in the path of the storm DAYS before those two idiots finally decided maybe they ought to listen.
The insane re-writing of history by the Democrats and the MSM ever since has been beyond disgraceful.
This was emphatically NOT “Bush’s Fault,” but the fault of two Louisiana Democrat leaders, just as the mortgage meltdown ia almost exclusively a Democrat debacle.
The spin over the past four years has been unprecedentedly vile.
He could have reversed his failed Presidency.
All with one act, in several simple stages.
Completely doing a 180 and opposing all amnesty, starting up the mass deportations and cut off all all federal services to illegal invaders, and building the US-Mexico border wall faster and higher than anyone could ever have imagined. He would have had the bucks. He lacked the WILL.
His popularity would be soaring in the 70% level.
Shame, Mr. President.
With friends like these, who needs enemies???
I don’t think Katrina was the lowest point.
GWB administration including Powell will be attached to WMD well beyond their days.
Cruel as it may seem, the Katrina storm/flood was coming one day. Living at or near sea level is living dangerously. Rebuilding on at risk areas is insane no matter what the jazz artist and cookies want.
I’m thinkin’ “flash” needs a flush.