Cheat-Seeking Missles

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Who Are Those Guys Anyway?

Butch and Sundance are riding hard, but closing in is a fast-moving posse. There they are on the hill! Who are those guys anyway?

Why it's the US Congress! That plodding, debating, fiddling while Rome burns bunch surprised us all with the lightening speed with which they dispatched the Dubai Ports deal. A couple weeks ago the deal was healthy and happy, riding around with Katherine Ross on a bicycle. Today, it's shot full of federale bullets on the dirt floor of an adobe shack.

We haven't seen such quick-handed, single-minded Congressional resolution since 9/11 -- and the President better take notice. With the possible exception of immigration, another vulnerable spot for the prez, there are no other current issues that pose the risk of such a violent, quick and coordination reaction as Dubai Ports. But that's just the point -- Dubai Ports came out of the blue, and now he's black and blue.

Say what you will about the security risks of the deal and the need to fix the CFIUS process, but the Congressional reaction was also about the need to distance oneself from an unpopular president's unpopular decision in the year of a popular election.

Maybe that was Rove's big idea, to give the GOP a way to distance themselves from Bush, so they win big in 2006, which is good for Bush (hat-tip to Laura Ingraham for that). More likely it was just incompetence getting its come-uppance from that posse on The Hill.

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