The list of problems conservatives have with President Bush is quite lengthy. US News and World Report even used “revolt” to describe the sentiments.
Conservative columnist George F. Will calls the idea of nation building in Iraq – or anywhere else – a “chimera,” a mythological monster that resides in the imagination. Oh, and it breathes fire, too – it’s engulfed more than 3,000 American troops and an estimated more than 30,000 Iraqis so far.
The Republicans aren’t just revolting over Iraq, however. They’re also upset because of Bush’s spending habits. Conservative columnist Robert Novak made no bones about his doubt that Bush will fail to veto an increase in the Social Security payroll tax, which is currently set at a $97,500 limit.
Making more income subject to taxes, with revenue going into a government-run entitlement, will “(demolish) supply-side tax principles that Republican administrators have purportedly followed for 26 years,” according to Novak. But he expressed no confidence that Bush will do what real conservatives want. Republicans have expressed similar anger about the Medicare Drug Benefit and the absolutely imaginary presidential veto power throughout most of Bush’s tenure, as well as other things.
Including, for instance, the Bush administration’s keenness to marginalize the judiciary by filling the political environment with talk of “activist” judges who dare to overrule Bush’s questionable national security ideas. Bush, Dick Cheney, Karl Rove, Attorney General Alberto Gonzalez and even former Attorney General John Ashcroft have made critical references to a judiciary with an agenda. In fact, it was during Gonzalez’s recent speech at the American Enterprise Institute that he said “a judge will never be in the best position to know what is in the national security interests of our country.”
If the Bush administration wishes to avoid the checks and balances imposed on it by the judiciary, some other form will have to be imposed. Very few would agree with the idea of an executive branch that only answers to the voters every four years. Fewer would agree with the lack of a constitutionality test, which new laws currently have to pass when they’re reviewed by the judicial branch.
While the Bush administration isn’t demanding the judiciary be removed entirely, they might as well be in the court of public opinion. If one were to believe what they have to say about most of the courts, lack of judicial oversight would almost make sense.
But no conservative believes in monarchy. No real conservative believes in excessive government expenditure, and fewer and fewer agree that Bush’s ideas for Iraq are going to advance the American cause there.If Bush really wants to, in the words of US News and World Report, “Tamp down (a) GOP revolt,” he might want to consider acting like a member of the GOP for a change.