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[greenyes] Whitman on Bush
January 4, 2005 |
Ex-EPA Head Whitman Recounts Frustrations with Right Wing Ideologues
Christine Todd Whitman, who served as President Bush's administrator of the
Environmental Protection Agency until she resigned under strained
circumstances in June, 2003, has written a memoir that looks unkindly at the
enormous influence of far-right advocates in the Administration.

To be published by Penguin Books at the end of this month, "It's My Party
Too: The Battle for the Heart of the GOP and the Future of America," asserts
that in revving up his base for the November election, Mr. Bush "missed an
opportunity to significantly broaden his support in the most populous areas
of the country," i.e. the blue states. [1]

"The Karl Rove strategy to focus so rigorously on the narrow conservative
base won the day," Whitman writes, "but we must ask at what price to
governing and at what risk to the future of the party."

When president-elect Bush offered her the job as head of the EPA, says
Whitman, she felt certain that he wanted her to build a strong environmental
legacy. This was reinforced after a meeting with Karl Rove, Bush's master
strategist. "I took Rove to mean that the work I would do in building a
strong record on the environment would help the president to build on his
base by attracting moderate swing voters." [2]

But "As it turned out," she continues, "I don't seem to have understood Karl
correctly," as she goes on to describe the countless frustrations in dealing
with what she calls the "anti-regulatory lobbyists and extreme
anti-government ideologues" that she indicates hold too much influence in
the party.

"A clear and present danger Republicans face today is that the party will
now move so far to the right that it ends up alienating centrist voters and
marginalizing itself," she writes. [3]


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