Home Store In Memoriam Deborah Newsletter Forum Topics Blogfeed Blogroll Facebook MySpace Contact Us About

Republican Strategist Admits 2005 Was A Bad Year For Bush

Reported by Ellen - December 31, 2005

The top story on Hannity & Colmes Thursday night (12/29/05) was a look back at the year that was and a look ahead to 2006 for the Bush Administration. Republican spokesperson Terry Holt (along with a little help from FOX News) was ready to trumpet Bush’s wonderful accomplishments in 2005 and forecast a blockbuster January coming up. But Alan Colmes threw so much cold water of reality at Holt that he was forced to do a 180 and acknowledge that he was glad 2005 was over.

Colmes began the discussion by asking Holt, “You gotta admit, this was the rockiest year of (Bush’s) presidency, right?”

Holt started by saying ‘05 was “the year of great distraction” but that ‘06 could be the year of “great focus.” He claimed that Bush had the opportunity to start the year strong with “a bold, decisive plan for progress in Iraq.” As he spoke, “Bush’s Big Month” appeared across the bottom of the screen.

Holt claimed that “the Bush doctrine” of spreading democracy is “paying real dividends in the Middle East” while Republicans at home are putting “the pieces in place” for a domestic agenda of comprehensive immigration reform and “several other issues."

Colmes interrupted impatiently. “You’re giving me a campaign speech.” He recited the reasons he called 2005 such a rocky year for Bush: “Collapse of his domestic agenda, he had a bad Supreme Court nominee, the indictment of a top vice-presidential aide, you’ve got another presidential aide – the top one, Karl Rove – under investigation, you’ve got slow response to Katrina, you’ve got a rising death toll in Iraq and a deficit of 360 billion dollars. That doesn’t add up to a very good year, does it?” “Bush’s Big Month” disappeared from the screen.

Holt finally conceded, “No, it wasn’t a very good year and, frankly, it’s kind of nice that it’s over… Well, Alan, you know ‘06 is the election year and it’s up to the Republicans to put the money on the table to show people how they’re going to effect their change in the family and in the community and while ’05 maybe you guys had a pretty good year distracting the Republicans, it’s over. It’s time to go to the polls in ’06.”

Colmes challenged the notion that it was the Democrats' fault for "distracting" the Republicans. “Whatever happened to the Republican idea of taking personal responsibility? 2005 was going to be, according to the White House’s own blueprint, about Social Security, immigration reform, revising the tax code, and reducing court litigation – tort reform – none of that was accomplished… You want to blame the Democrats for that?”

Holt started to list some of the things that Bush accomplished, including “getting spending under control.”

“Spending under control? We have the largest deficit ever!” Turning to the other guest, Steve McMahon, former Dean campaign worker. Colmes asked whatever happened to “Mission Accomplished,” and “Last stages of the insurgency.”

McMahon said he was sure the Republicans are glad the year is coming to a close. “Remember, the Republicans control both houses of Congress and the White House. The president came to town with his big agenda and he didn’t get any of it accomplished.”

Mike Gallagher, subbing for Sean Hannity, extolled “Democracy in Iraq” and took a few of his usual swipes at Democrats. “Why do you Democrats seem to underplay the historic significance of these amazing elections? …How about freedom in Iraq, is that a good thing?”

That emboldened Holt to trumpet again. “(Bush) takes the most sophisticated and revolutionary approach to foreign policy of any recent president in memory.” “(Democracy) wins the war on terror, not doom and gloom.”

McMahaon said that it’s not doom and gloom but realism. He said freedom is a wonderful thing but he noted that there is great unrest and tension in Iraq among the different ethnic groups. “The question you have to ask yourself is what the future of Iraq holds. Is Iraq more stable? How many more soldiers are gonna die? What’s the plan for getting our soldiers home? When are they coming home? These are questions that the American people are demanding answers to and the president doesn’t seem to have them.”

Colmes broke in to end the discussion, adding that he hopes those answers come in 2006. Neither Gallagher nor Holt seemed to have anything further to say.

Post a comment

Remember Me?

We welcome your opinions and viewpoints. Comments must remain civil, on-topic and must not violate any copyright or other laws. We reserve the right to delete any comments we deem inappropriate or non-constructive to the discussion for any reason, and to block any commenter for repeated violations.

Your email address is required to post, but it will not be published on the site.