12/19/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011


"God looks at the clean hands, not the full ones."
~Publilius Syrus

While he was campaigning in 2000, George Bush used to say that when he got into the White House he would give the Oval Office "one heck of a scrubbing" making allusions to the traces of "icky-bits" that Bill Clinton left behind.

When his term was complete, Mr. Clinton took only his favorite personal belongings - minus that assumed "something special." So Mr. Bush, at taxpayers' expense, gave everything else Clinton had left behind the "heave-ho," with the exception of the massive oak desk made famous during the Kennedy years.

Being the president of the United Stated means that you're the leader of the free world - you're the big cheese, the Commander-in-Chief, the "decider" and "Numero-Uno." The buck stops with you and you're responsible for running a clean-ship.

That said, I can't imagine John F. Kennedy caring about cobwebs, Bush scrubbing the bowl (though the image does make me smile), Dwight D. dusting, Clinton clearing out the cupboards, Woodrow Wilson doing windows, Truman taking out the trash, Hoover pushing a Hoover (except perhaps his wife), Johnson adjusting the drapes, Ford cleaning the floors, Lincoln doing laundry, Teddy tidying rooms, Nixon neatening anything (except for scrubbing 18 minutes worth of audio-tape), F.D.R. fluffing and folding, or Carter cleaning the crystal.

In actuality, the nuts and bolts of cleaning in the White House falls onto the shoulders of a special branch of the White House cleaning crew called the Executive Residence Staff.

The Bush family has occupied the White House for eight dirt-filled years, and while there isn't a U-Haul back to Crawford in the driveway yet, they clearly have one foot out the door, making ready for the new 44th President - Barack Obama - and his family. (The Executive Residence Staff are gonna' have their hands full preparing for the Obamas... that house is bound to be nasty.)

In preparation for our new Democratic President, how do those in charge of housekeeping intend to get eight years of Republican stains and smears out of the White House? There are those actual blood stains from when the Bush's dog "Barney" bit a reporter, and the smears from the likes of Karl Rove. Quite possibly there are moose droppings tracked in by Sarah "Recently Tagged and Released" Palin's snowshoes (though there were no reports of her visiting) but there are those nasty vomit stains from when "W" choked on pretzels. Oh, and let's not forget the burn marks on the new Oval Office rug left when Satan and George exchanged the presidency for the remainder of his soul.

In January 2009, when Barack Obama is sworn in as President, he will bring with him our hopes for so many new-and-improved, spick-and-span changes... a clean economy, clean peace, clean civil rights, clean jobs, clean housing, clean health-care, clean energy, clean technology, clean emissions and maybe even new clean industry with new clean green collars.

And while blood from the bite of a pooch, moose droppings from the shoes of an Alaskan Governor, and or even vomit from a residing President can be dealt with by housekeeping - the blood on his hands and the rest of Bush's dirty little secrets can never be scrubbed away.