Tired of all the talk of Bush = LBJ? Former Reason intern and NY Post scribe Ryan Sager has posited that the better analogue is in fact one Richard Milhous Nixon. From a recent col:
Nixon's eschewing of conservative principles isn't a bad point of reference [for Bush]. Nixon had his proposed Family Assistant Plan, entitling every American to a minimum income; Bush has his $1.2 trillion Medicare prescription-drug giveaway, the first new entitlement since Lyndon Johnson's Great Society. Nixon had his wage-and-price controls; Bush has had his steel, lumber, shrimp and textile tariffs. Nixon created the expensive and intrusive EPA; Bush created No Child Left Behind, which has sent federal education spending soaring and meddled with every school board in America….
The difference between Bush and Nixon, up until now, was that Bush hadn't managed to tick off the entire conservative movement at the same time.
But the Miers pick left social conservatives (who have been itching for a fight over the Supreme Court) screaming at the president's representatives in closed-door meetings.
As Sager notes, Bush lost the small-government, free trade, and libertarian GOPers a long, long, time ago.
Whole bit here.