Interesting. The New York Times reports that GOP leaders are breaking away from Bush to block the Dubai ports deal:
Defying President Bush, House Republican leaders said Tuesday that they would take immediate steps to scuttle a deal giving a Dubai company control of some major seaport operations without awaiting the outcome of a 45-day review of potential security risks.At the same time, Bush is asking for a line-item veto power which would allow him to cut such provisions from bills without scrapping the whole bill.
Representative Jerry Lewis, the California Republican who is chairman of the Appropriations Committee, said he would use a committee hearing on Wednesday to add a provision preventing the deal from moving forward.
Mr. Lewis said he would add the provision to an essential emergency spending measure that provides money for the war in Iraq and for Hurricane Katrina recovery.
This is something I have talked about before. It is just absurd to insert little clauses like this into bills which are totally unrelated. It allows politicians to skewer their opponents by saying "He/she opposed Blah Blah" without revealing that the "Blah Blah" bill was actually going to achieve something totally distinct.
On the other hand, who wants to grant even more power to Mr 34%? Come the November elections, Bush is going to be begging GOP candidates to allow him on stage with them.
Meanwhile, today's New York Times editorial calls Bush's visit to Asia "spectacularly misconceived":
The nuclear deal that Mr. Bush concluded with India threatens to blast a bomb-size loophole through the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. It would have been bad enough on its own, and disastrously ill timed, because it undercuts some of the most powerful arguments Washington can make to try to galvanize international opposition to Iran's nuclear adventurism.
But the most immediate damage was done on Mr. Bush's next stop, Pakistan...
It's just baffling why Mr. Bush traveled halfway around the world to stand right next to one of his most important allies against terrorists — and embarrass him...
Mr. Bush should have just stayed home.