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Bush's Liberalism has Damaged the Country

  

Since the Republican/Bush election debacle in November resulting in the Democratic sweep of Congress, criticism has devolved into a basic formula: Iraq and scandals. This is not incorrect only incomplete. The source of the disappointing midterm performance of Republicans however stems from something more insidious than this and, therefore, overlooked. That it comes in an unusual package is also disconcerting. But the real reason behind GOP/Bush woes in this bitter season is simple. Bush is a liberal and has governed as such.

The man who gave us tax cuts, the War in Iraq, not to mention Roberts and Alito, a liberal? Yes, as liberal as any President since LBJ, as a closer examination of the record will show.

While it is true that one of Bush's first actions after coming into office was to cut taxes from the Clinton-jerried top marginal rate of 39.6% to 35%, this is trifling when compared with Reagan's tax cuts from a top rate of 70 percent to 28% despite Democratic majorities in Congress.

Although modern liberals may blanch at the mere mention of tax cuts, however limited in scope, they cannot be unhappy with the record spending that has taken place under the Bush reign - other than for the “R” at the end of his name. Indeed, except for the “R,” Bush would be a hero of liberals rather than an object of derision for he has presided over the greatest expansion of government since “Great Society,” including the Medicare Prescription Plan, a new and unfunded entitlement.

It is true that he named conservative jurist John Roberts to the Supreme Court, but then selected Harriet Myers, an unknown quantity, bowing to his own liberal inclinations to maintain “balance” by bringing a woman to the nation's top court after Justice Sandra Day O'Connor retired. This was met with withering scorn from the conservative base, which prompted her retraction and the naming of a more acceptable Sam Alito.

Bush's response to 9/11 was hawkish in rhetoric but dovish in execution. Despite allegedly being at “war” he has increased defense spending less than a percentage point of GDP above Clinton, a liberal Democrat who eagerly defunded the Military after the end of the Cold War.

His prosecution of the war in Iraq, hampered by his Clintonesque defense budget, has also been dovish. He did not unleash the power of the US Military to destroy disruptive elements (Muqtada al-Sadr), impose martial law, nor did he have adequate boots on the ground to secure and hold conquered territory or control the borders with Iran and Syria where so much of the material fueling the insurgency comes from.

In a catalogue of domestic and cultural positions, Bush has also demonstrated amply his deeply liberal penchants.

In regards to immigration reform, it is hard to distinguish Bush from the most ardent illegal alien advocates. He approves of amnesty and guest worker while paying lip service to border security to pacify his base.

Bush has supported bilingual programs despite evidence that shows they slow assimilation of Hispanic immigrants. He has opposed measures to make English our official language. He also appears to support Affirmative Action and sent confusing signals to the Supreme Court, which led to the flawed decision upholding the University of Michigan's race based admissions.

He wrapped the Federal government's hands around local school boards with “No Child Left Behind,” working together with liberal stalwart Ted Kennedy.

In his so called “War on Terror,” he was avoided using the term “Islamofascist” (except for a few clarifying moments after which he quickly retreated) for fear of offending Muslim sensibilities even though identifying the enemy is precisely what is called for.

Worst of all, after 9/11, Bush failed to galvanize the nation around a unifying patriotism based on an inclusive, melting pot vision of American society emphasizing American exceptionalism - and our common culture - rather than the balkanizing multiculturalism that prevails - perhaps because he doesn't believe in it.

But what about the Republican Congress that went along with so much of the Bush program. Here too, while not defending the scandal ridden, earmark plagued, deficit spenders of the Republican Congress, much of the fault for this lies with Bush.

He is the President, after all, and ostensibly, at least, a Republican and therefore the leader of his party. He sets the direction for the legislative agenda and far be it for loyal Congressional Republicans to disagree with their Republican commander in chief. Perhaps, with a Democratic President, Congressional Republicans would have been more at liberty to oppose the free spending tendencies of a big government liberal.

Yes, Bush passed a few meager tax cuts and named a couple of conservative jurists to the Supreme Court, but take away the ranch and swagger and you will find a politically correct, multicultural liberal. And it is his liberal governance that has ruined his party and damaged his nation.

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