washington, dc

The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Don’t You Know There’s A War On?

My last installment on the remarkable interview the President gave The Washington Post involves the administration’s decision to become the first in history to refuse to pony up some new federal money to pay for local security costs associated with inaugural festivities. Asked why he was pushing for D.C. to use up some of its homeland security money for the Big Elephant Dance, here’s what Bush said:
“The inauguration is a high-profile event, like a lot of other events that, unfortunately, in the world in which we live, could be an attractive target for terrorists. And by providing security, hopefully that will provide comfort to people who are coming from all around the country to come and stay in the hotels in Washington and to be able to watch the different festivities in Washington and eat the food in Washington. We’ve got people coming from all around the country, and I think it provides them great comfort to know that all levels of government are working closely to make this event as secure as possible.”
Bush, you see, wants to make sure that District officials understand there’s a war on terror going on, and that a $40 million party to celebrate his second term might create an attractive target for terrorists, so what are they complaining about? I mean, what’s that homeland security money for, if not to make sure the Dancing Elephants feel as safe as they do back home, right?
That’s a really reassuring message to the residents of the Washington, DC area whose security will thereby suffer for the other 51 weeks of the year. I guess that’s what we get for failing to understand that our most important function is to serve as a staging area for George W. Bush’s second inaugural, which is what this country is all about.

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