Howard Dean Thinks GW Bush’s people will “Take Perry Out” – Are you kidding me? And what does this have to do with Michele Bachmann?
Former DNC Chair and Vermont Governor Howard Dean has been quoted in a recent article in The Hill as saying:
“The Bush people don’t fool around, as you know,” Dean said Tuesday night on MSNBC. “You can say a lot of things about Bush’s presidency and his failures as president, but one thing nobody should say [anything] bad about [is] his political team. They know what they’re doing, and they are ruthless, and they are going to take Perry out.”
First off, I disagree vociferously with Dean’s terminology. We really need to get away from this violence-tainted rhetoric.
Secondly, I’m not sure how much “Bush’s people” really care about the current election, though I suppose they will if they are supporting a particular candidate. Rove (who is also quoted in the article) is one of those fake pundit types on Fox who know they must say something flamboyant to keep getting paid, so I usually ignore him. But for some reason Rove and other “Bush people” have been breaking Reagan’s 11th commandment (i.e., Thou shalt not saying anything bad about fellow Republicans) and criticizing Perry, supposedly in an illustration of “a longstanding rift between the camps of the two Texas politicians.”
In any case, regarding this portion of Dean’s comments at the end of the article:
“He is now in competition with Bachmann and not with Romney. That’s a losing strategy for Perry, because they are going to split the right with the far-right vote, and I think this is great news for Mitt Romney.”
I’m not sure I agree with him on this. Ultimately Perry is in competition with Romney. On this we can agree. But Bachmann is a temporary distraction. It is in Perry’s best interests to push Bachmann off into the “unelectable” category as early in the process as possible. Once she is marginalized he can gather up the tea party vote while still having a chance of capturing some of the establishment vote (though his recent comments suggest he may end up losing the Independent vote). Then he can focus on Romney alone (this presumes none of the other candidates is a late bloomer). The tea party hates Mitt Romney. They will quickly jump to the savior of the week (currently Perry) once it is clear that Bachmann is an also-ran (which is becoming clear already as her Palinesque standoffness contrasts sharply with Perry’s ability to gladhand). That means Perry.
And Perry knows this.
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