Think of this as the Bush Doctrine II: pre-emptive political warfare. The Bush-Cheney campaign has not only begun its re-election conversation with an attack, it is an attack on a candidate merely seeking the Democratic nomination, unleashed less than a month into the primary season. How very different from the feel-good narratives and lists of accomplishments we're accustomed to seeing by incumbents at this stage, and how potentially dangerous. Not only does the president risk being seen as politically trigger-happy-shooting before he can even see the whites of his actual opponent's eyes-he has set himself up to be harmed by his own ricochet.
The Bush video calls Sen. John Kerry "unprincipled" over his claim to take on special interests, citing the vast sums Kerry has accepted from lobbyists over his senatorial career. But that sum is pitifully dwarfed by the president's $150 million war chest, which wasn't raised door-to-door selling Do-si-Dos. And what if Kerry suddenly fades? Does the Bush campaign just reload and fire? At what cost to its image, and to the dignity of the presidency?
George W. Bush