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'Bush's brain' leaves the White House

August 16, 2007

Re "The best and worst of Rove," Opinion, Aug. 15

Ronald Brownstein's assessment of Karl Rove's political legacy inexplicably overlooks the most noteworthy characteristics of his distinctive political vision.

Speaking only to conservatives in order to unite and energize his own party was certainly part of the Rove strategy, but in both 2000 and 2004, Rove was also implicated in Republican efforts to disenfranchise (and suppress) voters likely to go Democratic, specifically in Florida and Ohio.

Rove's collection of questionable campaign tactics also involved the manufacture and dissemination of malicious gossip, producing vicious attacks on Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) in the 2000 South Carolina primary and the Swift Boat charges against Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.) in 2004.

At the end of the day, the legacy of "Bush's brain" is a distinctive pattern of anti-Democratic electoral tactics distinguished by cynicism, voter irregularities and fabricated scandals.

James Mamer

Modjeska Canyon, Calif.


With Rove's departure, about the only crutch Bush can lean on now is Vice President Dick Cheney. Rove was a master of the political con game of misdirection, scare tactics and outright lies to deceive much of the American public into voting for Bush and other Republican candidates.

The real shame, though, is that all these voters were gullible enough to fall for his brand of trickery.

It is also becoming more and more clear that he was instrumental in crafting all the lies that led to the Iraq invasion, which is clearly this country's greatest international policy blunder.

Rod Hersberger

Santa Barbara


Re Toles editorial cartoon, Aug. 14

Yes, Rove is leaving the White House, but that does not mean the White House has fallen down, as depicted by Toles' sketch called "The Architect." On the contrary, business is booming in this country and throughout the world. The stock market has recently been at an all-time high.

Let us quit Bush-bashing. In Iraq, for the first time they have a democratically elected legislature that has women members. Also, Bush did eliminate weapons of mass destruction in Iraq: Saddam Hussein and his henchmen. Freedom is not free, and liberty must be won.

Boyd Benson


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