The Architect and His Earplugs


One interesting ramification of this election—learning that Karl Rove can be as delusional as Homer Simpson chasing a roast pig downhill. ("It's just a little slimy! It's still good!")

The "one-pager" outlines why, in his view, the losses were not particularly extraordinary and therefore not a repudiation of Bush: The loss of 28 House seats and six Senate seats is roughly comparable to losses suffered by the party in the White House in the sixth year of other presidencies and the same as the average wartime midterm.

Yep, and the subpoenas soon to be churning out of the Waxman office are going to be roughly comparable to the subpoenas hitting every sixth year White House. It all sounds like a complicated way of explaining away why the GOP is weaker at every level (although conservatives are stronger in the federal judiciary) than it was when Bush was elected.

NEXT: Wooly "Bully"

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  1. Yeah, this smells like a bad PR gloss over. On the technical point, he is right. 6th year elections do bode bady for president’s and this election fits into that mold (not surprising) but the difference comes from the relative nut-kicking this is when compared to the last election cycle, which had an unusualy positive result for the president. When expectations are raise, the possibility of humiliations galore also grows.

    Humiliations Galore.

  2. One wonders if the Repub faithful will take a fresh look at Rove’s performance, snap out of their stupor, and realize Turdblossom’s genius has been severely overrated in the last six years.

  3. You’re only overrated when you lose.

  4. Shecky: You’re right. Rove looked good in the same way, say, Robert E. Lee did: He was facing a series of utter morons. Lee was a good general, and Rove was a good strategist, but the spectacular nature of each of their victories had a lot more to do with the incompetence of (respectively) McClellan, Pope, and Hooker, and Gore and Kerry. When the chips were down, Lee got overmatched by Grant and the Union numbers, and Rove got overmatched by reality and the widening Democrat tent.

  5. Rove went his way, and reality went its.

  6. Could anyone have won that election for the GOP? It’s true, Rove was “overmatched by reality.” But who wouldn’t have been? Just look at that reality: disastrous foreign policy, wide-ranging corruption, sex scandals, a subliterate leader surrounded by yes-men who refuse to admit error (despite all facts to the contrary) and cover lies with more lies. People finally woke up to the fact that we were being led by incompetent fools.

  7. So is the proper subtitle for Election 2006 “Reality Strikes Back”?

    Or should it be “A New Hope”?

  8. Rove was a good strategist,

    How good is a strategist that so isolates the Christian right base while marginalizing the moderates that significant numbers of both wind up voting for the other party?

    Yeah, corruption and Iraq were big factors. But party loyalty was trashed when right-wingers started calling moderates and fiscal conservatives (like me) “RINO”s and literally running us out of the party.

    The last 3 or 4 years saw trememdous growth of independents. Roves masterful contracting of the “Big Tent” is at least a contributing factor.

    Yeah…great strategy there. Rove is a one-trick pony with great timing who couldn’t see where his strategy would lead and couldn’t admit when it stopped working for him.

  9. “Could anyone have won that election for the GOP?”
    Not after Rove’s slash and burn strategies of the last few years. His ‘justify at all costs’ scheme worked well until the kool-aid wore off. He looked brilliant until people realized his “strategy” consisted of making up bullshit and avoiding any confrontation with reality.

  10. Going to be an interesting two years. Republicans are in full “need to move radically right” mode and the Democrats think they have a mandate to pass all the crap that got them tossed out the last time.

  11. Subpoenas darkening the sky will settle some separation of powers issues, most likely.

    Not necessarily ones that needed to be settled.

  12. Just think … back in 2000 I predicted that this would happen.

    Of course, at that time I hoped it would happen because the GOP pushed through a lot of fiscally conservative measures that shrunk the federal government and that they would lose so many seats because they “went too far” and started “starving children.” I thought they would push their ideology (isn’t that what majorities are supposed to do) and that a gift-hungry public would stick its hand back out. Instead, they spend like LBJ (even more!) and they get turned out because of being bogged down in a stupid war fought in a stupid way.

    Do I still get half credit?

  13. Yep, and the subpoenas soon to be churning out of the Waxman office are going to be roughly comparable to the subpoenas hitting every sixth year White House.

    Looking back at recent “sixth year White Houses” does indeed reveal subpoenas everywhere, perhaps because recent White Houses that reach the six year mark have all faced a Congress held at least in part by the other party.

    Clinton? Check. (Republicns control Congress, investigate Whitewater, Lewinski, Travel Office, etc.)

    Reagan? Check. (Democrats control Congress, investigate Iran-contra.)

    Nixon? Check. (Democrats control Congress, investigate Watergate.)

    I think we chalk this up as attempted irony revealed as ignorance.

  14. six year mark have all faced a Congress held at least in part by the other party.

    One wonders why they never learn.

    Politicians are venal, inept and downright stupid? Check.

  15. “That happens to every president in his sixth year” is an odd thing to say about a party with a Permanent Majority.

    RC Dean,

    Thank you for laying out like that.

    Watergate, Iran-Contra, Iraq Debacle/Katrina/Abromoff


    “Whitewater, Lewinski, Travel Office, etc.”

  16. See a tongue-in-cheek visual of the demise of “The Architect”…here:

  17. Smartly done, Joe…smartly done.

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