Did you watch Karl Rove on the Sunday shows?
He's normally only seen and heard in short sound bites. But this Sunday, you could watch him for fifteen minutes or more and get a sense of who he is.
My reaction was this. He's
- Not that sharp
- Unpleasant to be with
I expected much more from this much vaunted "Genius".
On Meet the Press, he didn't even have good replies to David Gregory. One exchange
MR. GREGORY: On national security, a signature issue for this president, you said this past week the Democrats have a problem on that issue. Back in 2002 you said this is an issue that Republicans can take to the American people because they, they trust Republicans to do a better job protecting Americans. And yet today, which party would do a better job, according to our recent polling, it’s actually a tie.
MR. ROVE: Yeah. I—look, first of all, we could go to polls all day long, and I—you quote polls, I’ll quote polls.
So quote some polls! ... But he didn't. And as far as general perception of Bush and the war, he could at least have said something like this:
Years from now, people will look back on the Bush administration as having protected the country from attack. That's something they don't appreciate today.
I happen to disagree with that (I think Al Qaeda is a bunch of thugs that don't have any resources beyond human bodies and truck bombs), but Rove could at least have claimed something that couldn't be proved wrong - since it's positing a situation in the future. Rove was very unimpressive. And, as mentioned before, unlikeable.
Over on Fox News Sunday, Chris Wallace was surprisingly harsh. Juan Cole has a good rundown
over at Salon. Why was Fox hard on Rove? Was it to pile all the recent conservative sins on the scapegoat and send the critter out of the city, thus purifying Republicans? Seemed like it.
But back to Rove's intelligence. He sure didn't impress anyone today. But then, it doesn't take a lot of smarts to wage gutter politics, only the will to do so. If Rove is "Bush's brain" then we truly have a feeble-minded president in the White House.