The Fast Deflating Baloon
By Antonio R. Serna
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger may not have been aware of it but he has again dealt President Bush another serious political blow by snubbing him in the latter's latest fund raising visit in California. If the Republican governorof the largest state of the union can repeatedly thumb his nose on the president like he does, it tells all political observers, particularly the heavy donors, that this president's power and influence is fast going down hill. When his own party members can publicly question his capabilities as a decision maker like they are currently doing with his latest nomination for the U.S. Supreme Court, something is terribly wrong with the goings on in the Oval Office.
These are obviously the telling effects of a series of set backs that the president is experiencing lately. With the sad condition of the American economy, the disastrously failing war in the Middle East, the embarrassing performance of the government during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the humiliation of having to continually run away from the mother of a deceased war hero who simplywants to know what is honorable about the war in Iraq, the indictment of a key ally and supporter in Congress, and the possibility of a similar fate befalling his chief mentor and official political adviser, together with theChief of Staff of his Vice President, it is reasonable to imagine that the president must be having nightmares of the sinking of the Titanic proportions.
The effect of these severe setbacks is not as devastating to the president's political fortunes as it is to the members of his party who depend on him for assistance and leadership in their respective efforts to win in the 2006 and 2008 elections.
With three more years of lame duck presidency, their hope is to capitalize on the supposed popularity and charisma of the president as demonstrated in the last two presidential elections. The cruel truth is however catching up with them. What they loved to believe as popularity and charisma of the president is proving to be what it really is- a myth. With the Republican wannabes in the coming elections running away from the president, rather than to him, for help, the titular head of the Republican Party is apparently beginning to be a liability, more than an asset to them.
The behavior ofGovernor Schwarzenegger relative to the influence of President Bush to his chances of winning his long shot re-election bid in 2006 is typical of this fast growing phenomenon.
The Republican Party is currently in a serious dilemma. They can see that the over sized balloon, supporting their high flying political gondola which they unfairly over inflated during the 2000 and 2004 elections is deflating so fast that it's victory drunk passengers will hit ground with a resoundingcrash, come 2006 and 2008. The sad part about it is that they can do nothing about it.
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