The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Saturday, May 08, 2004  

Not According to the New York Times

Reporter Elisabeth Bumiller puts on her “news analysis” hat in today’s New York Times and comes up with this (“In the Balance: Rumsfeld's Job”):

In the aftermath of Donald H. Rumsfeld’s appearances on Capitol Hill on Friday three critical forces will probably determine whether the defense secretary keeps his job: the White House, Republican lawmakers[,] and Mr. Rumsfeld himself.

Apparently the public’s opinion doesn’t matter. True, a large majority of Americans, at least according to one poll support keeping Rumsfeld in office (Keep in mind: a substantial majority of Americans also believes Iraq was involved in the September 11 terrorist attacks.), but does public opinion really carry no weight?

Are Democratic lawmakers really so irrelevant? (Let’s remember that the Republican majorities in both the House and Senate are rather slim.)

What about the opinion shapers in the media?

Bumiller at least offers this small insight:

Scott McClellan, the White House press secretary, repeated on Friday that President Bush remained in support of his defense secretary, as did some others. But a person close to Condoleezza Rice, the national security adviser, speculated that Ms. Rice, who has a history of tense dealings with Mr. Rumsfeld, might not be unhappy if he resigned.

Maybe she’s good for something after all.

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