Presidential politics: Was President Bush’s carrier visit just an expensive photo op?


President Bush flies out to an aircraft carrier to address the sailors aboard and his opponents are in shock and awe. Senator Byrd, despite his busy schedule, took time to chastise the President from the floor of the Senate.

Calling the President “desk-bound”, Senator Byrd questioned his motives for flying out to the carrier:

I am loath to think of an aircraft carrier being used as an advertising backdrop for a presidential political slogan, and yet that is what I sawI do not begrudge his salute to America’s warriors aboard the carrier Lincoln, for they have performed bravely, … but I do question the motives of a desk-bound president who assumes the garb of a warrior for the purposes of a speech

To me, it is an affront to the Americans killed or injured in Iraq for the president to exploit the trappings of war for the momentary spectacle of a speech . . .Senator Robert Byrd (D-WVa)

Joining Democratic Senator Byrd is Democratic Congressman Waxman (D-CA). He has asked the General Accounting Office for a full accounting of the cost for President Bush to fly out to the ship rather than wait for it to dock. While the GAO is at it, maybe they can add up the cost of filubustering the nomination of Judge Estrada. My own guess is it will cost more to figure the cost. At least we got a moral boost from the President’s trip. After Byrd and Waxman, we all could use a Prozac on the rocks.

FLASH BULLETIN: This is for our Democrat friends. Everything an elected official does is a potential photo opportunity. This is not new. What is new is the Democratic Party’s feigning of incredulity. As the commander-in-chief, the president has every right to interact with the armed forces in any way he sees fit. He is sworn to defend us, and his most potent weapon is the military.

Of course, not all photo ops go according to plan. Who could forget President Clinton being photographed peering into the Korean DMZ? The only problem was, he forgot to take the lens caps off his binoculars. This lesson was not forgotten by the public relations staff of President Bush.


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