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September 21, 2005


Mr. Bloomberg has highlighted the political thickets now ensnaring Mr. Bush - and, by extension, Mr. Bloomberg himself

Bullpuckey. Finally giving Bloomberg something to disagree with him on is the greatest gift Bush could have handed him in an election year.

The corrected graf should read: "Bloomberg has highlighted the political thickheads ensnaring Bush." And arresting any Bush detractors with the nerve to speak in a public square.

As I mentioned below, the common understanding is that NARAL told Bloomberg he had to come out against Roberts to get their endorsement. I doubt that it had very much to do with Bush's popularity or that it was a difficult political calculation for Bloomberg.

The above commenters are noting the reality of NYC politics, but don't lose sight of the very important perceptions that are guided by and revealed by the way reporters write stories.

it's a meta-narrative, if you will. and everyone;s writing about it, even when it's not necessarily so, or at least the whole story.

One function of blogs is to shore up reality against the onslaught of journalist-driven perceptions.

The conclusion above is right: the GOP natives grow restless, and begin to beat their own drums. But using Bloomberg as a bellwether of Republican sentiment, rather than a city mayor who has decided to express an opinion on, of all things, a Supreme Court confirmation vote, as anything other than a Republican groping for an issue with which to differentiate himself from a president of his party who is dislike by probably upwards of 80% of that mayor's constituents -- well, I expect to see it propounded by the mainstream and debunked by the blogs.

Which I think we just did.

Congressional Republicans from across the ideological spectrum yesterday rejected the White House's open-wallet approach to rebuilding the Gulf Coast, a sign that the lockstep GOP discipline that George W. Bush has enjoyed for most of his presidency is eroding on Capitol Hill.

These are Senators we're talking about here. GOP Senators have never really been in the same kind of "lockstep" as the Republicans in the House. Many of them were raised on the same program, but just as many were not, and that makes things difficult. What Bush has benefitted from most is the lack of a strong Majority Leader, so that by default a rudderless GOP Senate would follow behind him. But when things begin to fray at the edges, maintaining lockstep requires having someone on the inside working for you, not just someone taking dictation for you. Bush doesn't have that.

According to the SF Chronicle this morning, Schwarzenegger has asked Bush to cancel a planned October 22 fundraiser. Ostensibly the reason is that Arnold wants the money for himself and his special election on a bunch of unpopular initiatives (including limiting union political contributions, limiting spending, "nonpartisan" commission for redistrictiing etc). National party figures say Arnold is trying to distance himself from the increasingly unpopular Bush, but Arnold says its just all about the money. I'd say he looks crass either way, but that's our Arnold.

One function of blogs is to shore up reality against the onslaught of journalist-driven perceptions..

Bloomberg's a Democrat, running as a Republican.

Nonetheless, read what's written about Congress and watch the tax cuts get postponed, Social Security get forgotten, etc.

As to the function of blogs, read Peter Daou's opus.

I don't want to get into the whole Bloomberg/Ferrer bloodbath for the umpteenth time, but the idea that Bloomberg spoke out against Roberts just because he was desperate to find an issue to distinguish himself from Bush is crazy. There are many more relevant issues that Bloomberg has criticized Bush for, such as the amount of homeland security funding NYC receives.

Many Democrats have a bad taste in their mouth because Bloomberg spoke well of Bush at the RNC last year (and then promptly excused himself for the remainder of the convention), but he's clearly not a Bushbot. And if he was looking to prove that, there are any number of issues that matter more to New Yorkers than the Roberts nomination, which serves to prove the theory that this was all about the NARAL endorsement.

Steve, agreed let's not turn this into a NYC mayoral thread; there have been enough for now elsewhere. But if you'll allow me to rebut (and then you can guys can boost bloomie once more if you like, and we'll call it quits):

I'm not sure what function a mayor's party affiliation serves once the election's over. DemFromCT, as to him being a Democrat running as a Republican, I respectfully disagree. Steve, as to him having plenty of other issues to distinguish himself from the Republican mainstream, certainly since the beginning of 2005 he's been finding them (in public health especially) but I'd suggest he is far closer to the Republican party line on many issues (school testing, taxes, land use, recycling) than he -- or the NYT -- would have us believe.

But as you point out this has all been said 1000 times over in 1000 other places by myself and 1000 others. Which I believe is the second function of blogs.

Which I believe is the second function of blogs.

Heh. No argument there.

BTW, I believe it's historically accurate to say Bloomberg was up until recently a Democrat, now running as a Republican. The rest is opinion.

Yup, a Dem 'til he decided to run for mayor without primary opposition; maybe when Bush hits 35% approval he'll switch back.

New York being New York, the more interesting thing is the dissention within the Rep ranks in general. Atrios has a fun squib about DeLay's "no more fat to cut" quote in the WashTimes: apparently DeLay told Tom Coburn he never said it, and Coburn told Lou Dobbs it may have been "manufactured." Heavens, what's the world coming to when Republicans are casting aspersions on the Moonie Times?

...dissension...(swear I was spelling bee champ once upon a time...)

more on the topic, this time the House;

"If we Republicans who are now in charge of both houses of Congress and the presidency are unable to make tough decisions and provide leadership, then we're going to be telling the American people we're no different [than the Democrats]," said Dana Rohrabacher, a California congressman.

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