Democrats & Liberals Archives

Mr. President: Fire the Architect

Mr. President: You are in trouble. You have lost your popularity and your credibility. Libby, the right-hand man of the vice president has been indicted. Karl Rove, your top advisor, is still under investigation in Plamegate. The credibility of the White House is in shreds. In order to restore some of the shine of the presidency, you must get rid of the one who has led you into this mess. You must fire the architect of the Potemkin presidency: Karl Rove.

In his indictment of Libby, Patrick Fitzgerald, the prosecutor in Plamegate, inserted a taunting statement that Mr. Libby

“spoke to a senior official in the White House (Official A) who advised Libby of a conversation Official A had earlier that week with columnist Robert Novak in which [ex-ambassador Joseph] Wilson’s wife was discussed as a CIA employee involved in Wilson’s trip [to investigate reports that Iraq was seeking uranium in Africa].”

Who is Official A? Of course, Fitzgerald is talking about Karl Rove. Furthermore, he has told Rove that he is still under investigation. This alone, should be enough to ask Rove to step aside.

But there is a larger reason. Karl Rove is the King of Sleaze. He is the one who made you governor of Texas and then got you elected - twice - president. He is the guy who directed all the lying, smearing and attacking of all those people who disagreed with you. He made sure there were dirty rumors about McCain in the primary when he was your opponent. He did the same with your Democratic opponents. Rove is called a genius. Yes, he is a genius at distortion and sleaze. His unearthing of the Swift Boat Veterans for Lies showed genius at work, the kind of genius that knows how to destroy and ruin people. He was a brilliant architect, the architect of the Potemkin presidency.

Mr. President, Rove built a Potemkin presidency that got you where you are. It has worked spectacularly. But the Potemkin presidency has collapsed. Your popularity is down to 35%. It's time for a fresh start.

You may not accept such advice from me. How about from Leon Panetta, who was President Clinton's chief of staff. On the News Hour with Jim Lehrer Panetta said:

"Moral authority is dependent on trust, and right now there's a cloud over the White House as a result of everything that's happened in the CIA leak case. That says that ultimately he has got to take action to try to move beyond what's impacting on the White House right now and to do that in the very least he has to ask Karl Rove to step aside, take a leave, because he's someone under investigation."

Yes, I am a Democrat. So is Leon Panetta. However, both he and I and all thinking Americans are interested in the president being able to clear the decks, bring new talent on board and revive the presidency. The first step, Mr. President, is to fire Karl Rove, the architect of this moral quagmire.

Posted by Paul Siegel at November 4, 2005 6:09 PM