Without getting into a debate about the content, I watched the press conference and the commentators are all over it like “Ok now that these respected men of Washington” have came up with these Bi-Partisan recommendations the President is under enourmous pressure.
Why? He isn’t eligible to be re-elected. The mid terms are over. I can see why Republicans as a WHOLE might care (for the 2008 election) but why would Bush himself care?
Again I am not referring to any political content. Indeed it could be any issue for any president Democrat or Republican. But why would a lame duck care?
I think nowadays the pressure he is under regards his legacy, not specific policies. His administration has been strongly conservative and has not cooperated with – much less courted – the middle ground. Now that the pendulum is swinging the other way again, he’s faced with trying to establish something for his administration to be remembered for when all it will apparently be remembered for is Iraq. The pressure is on him to establish something that HE did, by himself, that impacts our country and will be remembered fondly. Bi-partisan efforts won’t do that.
The President’s influence on events depends not only on his constitutional powers – commander in chief, veto of bills, head of government and state – but also on his reputation within the country.
In short, a president with terrible poll numbers has a very weak hand in dealing with Congress. The weaker a president, the more inclined Congress is to ignore what he wants, even considering differences in party affiliation. A popular president has a better hand to play in dealing with Congress (eg, Reagan and Democratic Congresses, Clinton (at times) with a Republican Congress).
If the president continues to make unpopular decisions and his reputation suffers, he will be utterly unable to move forward any of his agenda, whatever it might be in his last two years. If he regains popularity, he will have more political capital to spend on getting what he wants.
Also, if Bush’s administration becomes ineffective now, Congressional Republicans will essentially declare it a back-handed victory for them. They’ll be able to claim that Bush was only successful as long as he had their support and collapsed without it. Future Presidents, of both parties, will find Congress insisting on taking more of a leadership role.
He is under pressure because respected politicians say in a group, that he is wrong about his stupid conducting af a war. His stubbornness which he prides so much ,has to be curtailed. They say he should change and he cant pigeon hole them as dissidents or partisans. He has to respond.
Bush still has two years left in office, and has things he wants to accomplish - nobody who would go to the trouble of becoming President would just give up half a term. But Bush in particular is a big dreamer. He wants a democratic Iraq to transform the Middle East. And yes, he’s got his legacy to worry about. He’s hoping and praying that history proves him right about Iraq, and he can’t let America leave Iraq if he wants that to happen.
Well without getting too much into GW Bush, I don’t want this to become a great debate, so it basically is an ego thing?
I mean I guess in terms of money would it lessen his speaker fees. I hear Clinton makes a lot of money as much as $50,000 a speech. I mean he was stifled and impeached. Whether we agree or not. To me it seems like less of doing a good job but an ego trip. For any lame duck president.
Has any other president gone on to an elected office? I know Carter does a lot of diplomatic things but those are appointed jobs.
No, it’s not entirely an ego thing, although it certainly plays some part. See the posts from me and Marley23. There are very practical reasons why Bush – or any President – would care about the last two years of his presidency.
A few Presidents have continued public service after leaving the White House. I don’t recall the whole list, but Taft became a Supreme Court justice, Andrew Johnson served in the Senate, and John Quincy Adams served in the House.