Is the Texas gang in the White House trying to learn a reverse lesson from the Texas baseball gang in Houston?
A week ago, the Astros were soaring, having reached the World Series for the first time. This morning, they're looking pretty low after a four-game sweep. Poof. Just like that, momentum can dissipate.
Over the last week, the Bush administration has been suffering its own four-game sweep: (1) The Harriet Miers nomination was foundering, (2) the 2,000 American was killed in Iraq, and (3) Karl Rove and (4) I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby seem to be sliding towards court dates.
Now ... poof. Miers is gone. Can the Bush administration use that to spark a change in its momentum?
Miers' withdrawal does two things: First it steals the spotlight from Fitzgerald-Watch/LeakGate. Second, it clears the way for a rapprochement between Bush and his party's base. If Bush nominates someone from the conservative judicial farm system, a Michael Luttig, Janice Rogers Brown, or Edith Brown Clement (does he ever refer to either of the latter two as "Brownie?"), it would be the political equivalent of make-up sex.
And what timing. With Fitzgerald facing a hard deadline, the indictments seem likely to come down today, meaning that the Bushies need the entire team behind rallying round them, not forming the circular firing squad.
(Note: The conspiracy theorists will argue that this is all calculated. But do we really think any more that this White House could carry off this level of Machiavellian intrigue? I say carry off -- they certainly have the capacity to conceive it, but execute.)
Here's where the Texas turn-around could go off track: Does Bush learn the lessons his wingers are proclaiming -- that Miers was insufficiently conservative -- and go with one of the farm system candidates? Or does the wing-nut rebellion piss off the president, who has a famously long memory on issues like loyalty and betrayal, snub them with an Alberto Gonzalez?