Friday, February 22, 2013

Is Karl Rove's run at an end?

By Richard K. Barry


I'll just show myself out.

Politico ran a story yesterday pointing to the fact that critics of Karl Rove in his own party are sensing weakness and taking the opportunity to attack the man who was above reproach for conservatives only a few short months ago. 

The man who raised gobs of cash with precious little to show for it on election night is getting heat from his own. The man who had a meltdown on Fox News that evening as he watched his empire crumble is no longer seen by many to have the magic touch and is therefore a target for those who probably never liked the bastard anyway.

There are at least two pieces to this. The first is that he is attempting to blame the rise of the tea party and radical conservatism for recent failures of the GOP. His latest effort, the Conservative Victory Project, is intended to hand-pick relatively reasonable, and therefore electable,  Republican candidates and channel resources to them. It is an attempt to decide who gets to run and who doesn't, and it's got some in the party hot under the collar. 

It's fine to set yourself up as kingmaker, as long as you have the juice to deliver. The moment it can be shown that you don't, the long knives will be out.


The other part is that Karl Rove is a major piece of shit. He is not just your run-of-the-mill street fighting opponent. He is a man without a soul. On his resume are legendary smear campaigns. Who can forget his hatchet job on John McCain in the 2000 GOP presidential nomination contest, as reported by the Boston Globe?
Bush's campaign strategists, including Karl Rove, devised a push poll against John McCain. South Carolina voters were asked "Would you be more likely or less likely to vote for John McCain for president if you knew he had fathered an illegitimate black child?". They had no interest in the actual percentages in the poll, the goal was to suggest that [McCain had a black child]. This was particularly vicious since McCain was campaining with his adopted [dark skinned] Bangladeshi daughter.

Nice, huh?

And then there was the Max Cleland smear in which Rove ran an ad in the Georgia Senate contest in 2002 between Democrat Cleland and Republican Saxby Chambliss. It questioned Cleland's patriotism by listing his votes against homeland security bills, and then showed pictures of Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein. 

Typical of Rove to run a slimy ad impugning the patriotism of a person who lost both legs in Vietnam. 

But it wasn't my goal to list ways in which Karl Rove is a creep, only to refresh our memory, if that's required. The point is that we know what kind of person he is, though his success has kept those in his own party, many of whom must surely hate him, from ripping out his throat.

One of the less talked about truths in politics is that real pricks are hated at least as much by their own party members as the opposition.

Now that his best days seem behind him, it would be sweet if he was finally brought down by his own. 

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