If we always knew the enemy's intentions beforehand, we should always, even with inferior forces, be superior to him.
Frederick the Great
I am sure that I'm not the first one to speculate in this direction but I'm going to offer the Bush game plan just the same. Part of my prediction is based on that idiotic nonsense he drivelled yesterday about how the Democrats chased poor "good and honorable" Alberto Gonzales out of the DOJ. It's a setup and there's only one place he's going with this.
Predictions below the fold.
You can bet your sweet @$$ that Rove had a hand in constructing this AG chicanery. I have always believed that Rove's best weapons weren't his lack of scruples and unwillingness to play by accepted standards of political conduct. Those were only Karl's operating procedures. No, Karl's best weapon has always been in timing. Karl is like the season in that song from the movie Summer of 42: He "tells the moon to wait and the sun to linger. Wraps the world round his [middle] finger." His staff must know every regulation on the books as far as timing goes. Everything from the 2000 presidential recount, to the IWR, to showing the OBL tape the weekend before the 2004 election, to releasing General Honore to rescue NOLA, to getting out of the Plame GJ testimony faux pas, to the Patriot Act USAG insertion, to the recent FISA debacle: all of it has been carefully calibrated to the greatest effect. For the GOP timing is everything in getting what they want and holding the door on the authorities while they stash as much loot as they can get their hands on. Karl's still going to be pulling strings in the next election and he is no doubt behind the malicious mischief with the CA electoral votes, timed for maximum effect and waste of resources.
So, if the Dems haven't figured it out yet, here's the lowdown. If you want to defeat the Rovians, you have to screw up their timing. They expect you to play by the rules and let a certain amount of time pass. The Rovians will always have a strategy that takes advantage of that interval. You wanna shut them down? Don't give them any more time outs. Spring things on them. Be unpredictable. We should have had no-confidence vote after no-confidence vote. We should have hammered away on the Iraq War spending bills and sent the same one back over and over again. Send the subpoenas right away, one after another. Hammer the White House. Demand loudly, "Who the F%^*$ are your system administrators and where are the missing emails? I want them now!" But nooooo, we were predictable. We were honorable. We weren't pushy. (Thanks Broder) We have already lost our opportunity to get a decent AG.
1.) Bush has no intention of nominating anyone for AG. Clement will fill in as acting AG for the remainder of the term. Chertoff is a non-starter because that will dredge up the whole Katrina debacle and the GOP doesn't want that going into an election year because the hearings will turn into, "So, what was the deal you guys wanted with Kathleen Blanco before you sent in the National Guard and the real assistance? Why did it take reporters begging for help and pictures of dead old women in wheelchairs and bodies floating in the Mississippi before you did anything? Does human suffering mean nothing to you? Didn't you have an obligation to resign before your agency was used for political purposes? Isn't that why we just got rid of AGAG?" That might not look so good. Better leave sleeping dogs lie for as long as possible.
3.) Democrats will cry foul and say the acting AG appointment is a de facto recess appointment and that Bush broke his promise. Bush will say not so. (technically, this is correct, is it not?) Bush will say, "I'm just looking for the right man who won't have to go through the scathing star chamber that is the US Senate. Democrats aren't interested in justice. They are only interested in partisan witchhunts. All these good, honorable men will have their reputations viciously attacked for political reasons. Meanwhile, the work that the Justice Department is supposed to do to keep our nation safe, won't get done." Clement will serve for 210 days, then Bush will nominate someone and the 210 clock will be reset. That's 420 days total. How many days does Bush have left in his term? Gee, now I wonder why he's not leaving until Sept 19... (I think the acting appointment term of service was mentioned somewhere else as well. If you have the link, lemme know.)
3.) Bush will eventually nominate someone but by the time he is confirmed, the presidential term will be up and Bush will say, "I think you were done." and he and his droogs in crime will leave and the Democrats will have the unenviable job of having to clean up and expose the crooks at the same time. Americans will have Bush fatigue and will want to move on, something they should definitely NOT do. But we know the media will start up the Wurlitzer for healing.
And Patrick Leahy will be like the dismembered Black Knight, left in the middle of a dusty road, screaming. "Come back here. I'll bite your leg, I will", while his adversary rides off into the sunset.
Bush's speech yesterday was the classic "Accuse Your Opponent Of The Crimes You Have Committed". If only the Democrats had some at-the-ready crack communication team craft a message that says, "Yeah, well, no one plays politics better than this WH. Let's take the Clinton years, the Iraq War vote, Max Cleeland, swiftboating John Kerry, stiffing New Orleans during the flood of the Century, replacing our US Attorneys with Rovian sock puppets, keeping black votes from being counted, etc, etc. And all we've heard from this human signature machine for the past 6.5 years is Blah-Blah-Blah-Freedom. Yadda-yadda-yadda-terror. Does George think we're still stupid?" But we do not hear any truly scathing, mocking indignation from the Democrats. It is all very tempered.
Ok, now it's your turn. How will the USAG situtation turn out?