Senate 2008 Guru: Following the Races

Keeping a close eye on developments in the 2008 U.S. Senate races

Monday, March 05, 2007

GOP Senators Love W: In Their Own Words

  • With W's approval ratings in the gutter all around the country, the DSCC put out a fun release chronicling GOP Senators' love of Bush 43:

    Coleman (MN): Norm Coleman said himself that he wouldn’t be in the U.S. Senate without Bush’s support during the 2002 campaign. Described as “a protégé of Bush” and “a strong Bush partisan,” Coleman said in 2003 that God answers prayers by providing leadership, “and we have that in George W. Bush.” [Star Tribune, 1/8/03; The Forward, 3/28/03; Star Tribune, 4/18/03; Pioneer Press, 1/16/07]

    Sununu (NH): As the son of the first President Bush’s top aide, John Sununu has reminisced about meeting George W. Bush at the family compound in Kennebunkport. After his own Senate victory in 2002, Sununu cited the importance of Bush’s support to his campaign, saying, “having the President visiting the state helps to get voters more focused on the election and the campaign.” Sununu added that, “on a lot of issues,” he and Bush were “likely to agree.” [Union Leader, 3/1/03]

    Smith (OR): Gordon Smith, who has referred to President Bush as “my friend, Oregon's friend,” chaired Bush’s 2000 and 2004 campaigns in the state. [FDCH Political Transcripts, 1/5/02; The Oregonian, 1/2/01; AP, 10/8/04]

    Collins (ME): Susan Collins has referred to Bush as an “outstanding commander in chief,” saying in 2004 that she and Bush were “on the same track.” [Roll Call, 5/20/02; New York Times, 8/10/04]

    Dole (NC): From 2002, when Bush headlined numerous campaign events for Dole through today, Dole has repeatedly referred to Bush as “our great president,” describing him as “a man of vision and ideas.” [News & Record, 10/25/02; The Chronicle, 1/24/07; Dole Media Availability, 10/20/06; ABC, “This Week,” 11/13/05]

    McConnell (KY): As the Senate GOP leader, McConnell is “fighting Bush’s battles” in the Senate on issues like the troop escalation in Iraq and Social Security privatization. Just last year, McConnell praised Bush as “one of the great presidents in the history of the United States.” [Washington Times, 3/1/07; NBC, “Meet the Press,” 3/6/05; Washington Post, 3/12/06]
    I know that it's probably not fair to hold a Republican Senator accountable for comments he or she made months and months ago, but, for those who care about such things, have at it. Whether they like it or not, their support for Bush and his mismanagement and his failures are significant parts of their individual records. They will try to run from it and distance themselves from it, but it is their crosses to bear.


    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    Weren't Bush's approval ratings in the 50's and 60's back in 2002-2004, when many of those comments were made?

    My point is that a significant portion of the American public--25 to 30 percent of it--changed their mind about President Bush from four years ago to today. Its not unreasonable for a Senator's position on the President to change over time as well.

    I think if you ask them, they'll say that they support the President, and wish him well, but they have serious differences with the way he's led the country. And such a position puts them in the mainstream of America.

    In short, this is another worthless "update" on what's increasingly become nothing more than rather pathetic attempts to smear members of the U.S. Senate.

    8:47 AM, March 05, 2007  
    Blogger Contrapositive said...


    Yes, many Americans changed their mind about Bush after 2004. But plenty of people around the country--and in state like Maine in particular--had seen enough to know he was leading an dangerous, unserious and incompetent administration well before then.

    Why Sen. Susan Collins, for example, should be let off the hook for supporting and enabling the president's agenda is unclear to me.

    There are two choices: Her judgment was poor or she's a good political soldier--at the expense of her constituents.

    It doesn't much matter which one is the case. Either way, she hasn't served Maine's voters.

    5:50 PM, March 05, 2007  
    Blogger VA Blogger said...

    I'll let the voters of Maine, who give her a 72% approval rating, determine whether or not they serve her. Certainly, they opinion carries infinitely more weight than the small words of an anonymous Internet voice who doesn't give a flying shit who represents the state, as long as they have a (D) at the end of their name.

    Really, you guys strive for outrage, but all it comes across as is petulant whining. Maybe if your movites weren't completely self-serving and shallow, there would be room for authenticity.

    10:55 PM, March 05, 2007  
    Blogger Johnny C said...

    The problem with you defense of these senators VA is that it comes down to them doing whatever polls tell them to. That may be good politics but does not demonstrate any leadership. Like it or not these people are going to have to explain there past statements. By the same token if there is a massive rebound in W's popularity they will benefit but past statements are part of the debate whether you like it or not.

    12:44 PM, March 06, 2007  

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