Here is a combination that the Bush team would rather not be seeing in the headlines a mere five days before the election:
Now we won’t come to any conclusions about fairness of the Pentagon’s Halliburton contracts in the next few days. But here’s why this news is important.
- From the beginning, Bush and Cheney knew that giving no-bid contracts to the Veep’s former employer would at least give an impression of impropriety. And they didn’t care.
- The Bush strategy from the beginning of this campaign has been to make this election about John Kerry. The idea was to put Kerry on the defensive and keep him there. These last few days are turning out to be all about topics like Iraq and Halliburton. This has become a race that is now focused the Bush record and he is one who is on the defensive. This shift is all the more important because the primary tools Bush has in his campaign arsenal are personal attacks on Kerry and fear mongering. Both of those tactics might play when you’re on offense. But they don’t appear to be nearly as effective when a candidate is counter-punching.
- The FBI is investigating. The Pentagon has been leaking stories about the increased costs of the war and the possibility of more troops in the near future. The CIA has long been feuding with Rummy and the White House. State and Defense have never gotten along. There are cracks in the house of loyalty that Bush built.
- Don’t think this adminstration is on the defensive this week? Well. then explain this headline from Fox News: