John Hawkins of Rightwing News comments on the supposed death of the port deal:
The number of Americans opposed to this deal outnumber those who support it roughly 3 to 1 and they’re much more passionate about their position. Furthermore, this single issue, has hurt Bush significantly at the polls and has damaged the GOP’s reputation on national security. Moreover, if the public hasn’t turned around by now, they’re not going to be turned around.
So, let’s cut to the chase: are the supporters of this deal willing to give up seats in the House and Senate in order “to be right”? Here’s another question along similar lines: are the supporters of this deal willing to lose control of the House and Senate in order “to be right”? Because, if this deal would have somehow been forced through, despite the sort of enormous opposition to it we’ve seen from the American people, at a minimum it would have cost us seats and it could have possibly cost us control of Congress.
Maybe some people think that’s a price worth paying “to be right”. But, ask yourself: is making sure that a company from the UAE is allowed to handle stevedoring duties a “core conservative value”? Are they an important constituency group? Can people from the UAE vote?
Since the answer to all those questions is “no,” Bush made a huge political mistake by waving around a veto threat and the Republicans in Congress were right to kill the deal, although the over-the-top way some of them have behaved was not appreciated (I’m thinking about Sue Myrick and Peter King in particular).
What it all comes down to is that this is a big issue with the voting public, those of us who don’t think this deal is a risk to our security are in the minority by far, and sometimes you just have to accede to political reality. That may be a bitter pill to swallow, but it’s where we’re at, and it’s why whoever had a talk with Dubai Ports World and convinced them to fall on their sword, did the right thing.
Politics is not for the weak of heart, and this whole thing is a great example of that. I’ve never been very good at the ‘win some, lose some’ game, so the ‘fall on the sword’ thing is a difficult pill to swallow.
For me it’s not about whether a UAE company gets to manage a port or not. It’s the fact that the news media took hold of 35% of the truth, manipulated it into a controversy, shoveled it into the mouths of the public and created a hot potato that no Republican wanted to be left holding. With the thought of losing a mid-term election, the Republicans reacted to the 35% and turned on themselves. And now, who wins? Dubai Ports World? Nope. Republicans who opposed the deal? Nope. Voters will forget about this by July. Bush? Uh uh. Lame duck. Democrats? Hardly. No plan and one of their trophy’s (Bill Clinton) was in on the deal.
Politics is not for the weak of heart.