The Washington Post previews tonight’s State of the Union address with this:
For years, President Bush and his advisers expressed frustration that the White House received little credit for the nation’s strong economic performance because of public discontent about the Iraq war. Today, the president is getting little credit for improved security in Iraq, as the public increasingly focuses on a struggling U.S. economy.
Of course, that seeming paradox quickly resolves itself.
Before, Bush received little credit for the economy because the economy wasn’t actually working well for everyone, a reality that’s now impossible to spin.
Now, Bush receives little credit for Iraq because it’s clear that moving Iraq from “the eighth circle of hell to the fifth” in terms of sectarian violence, while nothing happens to resolve the underlying political strike, is no argument to continue a destabilizing occupation.
For several years, conservatives have pounded on the table, yelling at working familes, “The economy is strong! Quit yer bitching!” Families actually struggling chose to disagree.
Today, Bush will tell Americans to close their eyes, pretend that violence doesn’t continue to rage in Iraq and pretend that fundamental political divisions don’t persist.
Good luck with that.