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Why Gregg Withdrew

In his statement backing out of the Commerce secretary position, Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.) said that he had “found that on issues such as the stimulus package and the census, there are irresolvable conflicts for me.” Gregg explained that, “Prior to accepting this post, we had discussed these and other potential differences, but unfortunately we did not adequately focus on these concerns. We are functioning from a different set of views on many critical items of policy.”

The stimulus is likely a red herring. Gregg accepted Obama’s offer after the House stimulus package had been unveiled, and, indeed, after the bill had passed the House over the unanimous opposition of Republicans. Perhaps Gregg was disappointed President Obama did little to improve the legislation in the Senate. But it wouldn't make sense that the stimulus led to Gregg’s decision.

More likely, it was the announcement, made just a couple of days after Gregg's nomination, that the director of the U.S. Census Bureau would work under the oversight of senior White House aides (even as the bureau itself would remain, as the statute requires, part of the Department of Commerce). The story circulating among Hill Republicans is that Gregg wasn’t notified about the Census matter before the announcement, and that he demanded of Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel a few days ago that the decision be reversed. I'm told that Emanuel said he would get back to him, but Gregg heard nothing. So he requested a meeting with the president and said he couldn’t be part of the Obama administration.

One effect of this story will be to exacerbate the sense among Republicans that, after all the happy talk during the transition, the Obama administration has taken on a surprisingly political and partisan cast. Republicans on the Hill with whom I’ve spoken are in a sense relieved; they were worried that clever “post-partisan” or bipartisan tactics by Obama could split and weaken an already uncertain and demoralized GOP. But if it is true that Rahm Emanuel chooses to behave like Karl Rove on steroids, then Republican unity and fighting spirit will be pretty easy to maintain.

By William Kristol  | February 13, 2009; 7:01 AM ET
Categories:  Kristol  | Tags:  William Kristol  
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Comments

So Gregg wouldn't have the power to gerrymander, right? Is that really why he quit? Wouldn't have anything to do with the "regular" talks he and McConnell had, would it? At this point, President Obama should just forget "reaching across the aisle" and get qualified people in his cabinet that are willing to forget the "goodies" and work for the good of the American people - and I don't see too many Republicans willing to do that.

Posted by: Utahreb | February 13, 2009 9:38 AM | Report abuse

William Kristol has the blood of over 600,000 Iraqi civilians on his hands. He should not be writing editorials in a local penny ads newspaper, let alone a supposed paper of record.

Posted by: B2O2 | February 13, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

An excerpt from this war criminal's wikipedia entry:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Kristol

According to journalist Dana Milbank, Kristol was "perhaps the most outspoken supporter of the Iraq War".[9] On September 18, 2002, he declared that a war in Iraq "could have terrifically good effects throughout the Middle East." A day later, he said Saddam Hussein was "past the finish line" in developing nuclear weapons. On February 20, 2003, he said of Saddam: "He's got weapons of mass destruction ... Look, if we free the people of Iraq we will be respected in the Arab world." On March 1, 2003 — 18 days before the invasion of Iraq — Kristol dismissed the possibility of sectarian conflict afterward. He also said, "Very few wars in American history were prepared better or more thoroughly than this one by this president." He maintained that the war would cost $100 billion to $200 billion (the cost is now about half a trillion dollars). On March 5, 2003, Kristol said, "We'll be vindicated when we discover the weapons of mass destruction."

In 2003, just as the Iraq War was starting, Kristol stated, on the National Public Radio show Fresh Air, "There's been a certain amount of pop sociology in America ... that the Shia can't get along with the Sunni and the Shia in Iraq just want to establish some kind of Islamic fundamentalist regime. There's almost no evidence of that at all. Iraq's always been very secular."[10] Kristol also wrote a book "The War Over Iraq" with Lawrence Kaplan before the Iraq War and stated that: "The United States may need to occupy Iraq for some time. Though U.N., European and Arab forces will, as in Afghanistan, contribute troops, the principal responsibility will doubtless fall to the country that liberates Baghdad. According to one estimate, initially as many as 75,000 troops may be required to police the war's aftermath, at a cost of $16 billion a year. As other countries' forces arrive, and as Iraq rebuilds its economy and political system, that force could probably be drawn down to several thousand soldiers after a year or two." [11] (The war in Iraq currently costs approximately $12 billion a month, and American forces there number about 150,000.)

Posted by: B2O2 | February 13, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

The US Census is the most racist tool currently in play as a power grab by special interest groups who are the very ones who claim they are free of bias and above every else in their ethics. It is not just a head count of population as it should be but it used as a tool to make decisions based on race and ethnicity. That is far from the “dream “ of equality. These so-called “leaders” of special-interest groups care only about elevating their numbers and power. They care about funding and special perks for their own racial and ethnic group and not all Americans. They are a disgrace and need to be called out on the carpet. Who cares if you are Puerto Rican Hispanic, Mexican Hispanic, Central American Hispanic? Who cares is you are Asian- Pacific, American Indian, Other Indian, left-handed Lesbian or other group that wants special treatment. Why should illegal aliens be counted? Why is this important to counting heads for apportionment? Because it is NOT. Why do we need to ask the “leaders” of blacks and Hispanic groups to approve of the methods used and cow-tow to their demands? These groups want special treatment and special formulas to over count their “projected” numbers for power and money. When do we get rid of the Black caucus, the Hispanic Caucus, and every other racist and divisive group that cares only about skin color and ethnic group and don’t want to represent all Americans. They are a disgrace and just like the US Census questions, continually focus on dividing Americans. Maybe we should just ask the ACORN workers to do the census. We are sure to have the same results.

Posted by: lookout_63 | February 13, 2009 9:49 AM | Report abuse

We all know how easy it is for Republicans to act against the good of the country, so your silly little article means nothing.

Better yet, shut up and go wait in the car.
**
P.S. Go get that putz Rove and take him with you.

Posted by: Evenfoolsarerightsometimes | February 13, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Wow! So you guys at the WP picked up Kristol on waivers from the NYT? Nothing like sloppy seconds! I'm sure the Iraqi people are pleased, eh?

Posted by: osullivanc1 | February 13, 2009 9:58 AM | Report abuse

More from wikipedia on this bellicose chickenhawk. Stay tuned for his push for war with Iran. We need to spray for this type of vermin, not let them crawl into family newspapers.

--------------

He was a vocal supporter of the 2006 Israeli attack on Lebanon, stating that the war is "our war too," referring to the United States. He continues to back the Iraq war, and favors imposing sanctions on Iran, and suggested in June of 2006 that, "we might consider countering this act of Iranian aggression with a military strike against Iranian nuclear facilities. Why wait?"[15]

Posted by: B2O2 | February 13, 2009 10:01 AM | Report abuse

This is all about a fit of pique over control of the Census and whether Emanuel got back to him in time? As childish as Senators can be, Gregg's a big boy and sincerely doubt that this is about either treatment or some nefarious plans to gerrymander (especially since gerrymandering can't be done like it was in the old days now - the courst get involved.)

Nope, agree with other posters that this is about 1.) the fear of being ostracized from both parties - being a defector is hard, look at Lieberman; 2.) lack of fear about not being re-elected - Gregg must think his chances with the Republicans are better than Lieberman's; and 3.) pork. Mitch McConnell promised Gregg some things. He threatened to quit, got some promises, and decided against it. It doesn't make him a bad person, but it hardly makes him a man of principle, either.

Posted by: kszimmerman | February 13, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Let me get this Kristol, you and your republicans friend (with your failed philosophy of supply side economics) have bankrupted not just the US but the entire world. It's like I'm having a really bad dream. What baffles me is that you still have the Washington Post and the NY Times allow you to continue to spread those moronic nonsense. What ever happened to good logic in this country?

Posted by: fgerald0204 | February 13, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

As usual, Kristol's thoughts on this issue represent an outright assumption that is utterly devoid of factual basis. Sen. Gregg said the census issue had nothing to do with his decision -- he's said that consistently, and did so again yesterday. Nonetheless, Kristol -- the knower of all unknowns -- apparently has Sen. Gregg's brain under a microscope and comes up with a totally contrary conclusion.

Kristol: here's a suggestion -- stick to writing about things you know, like trumped-up justifications for illegal invasions of sovreign nations or for bailing out rich bankers while bankrupting the federal treasury. Again, it's clear why the NY Times fired your sorry butt -- it's just a shame that my hometown newspaper now lets you waste its newsprint and electrons peddling your falsehoods, half-truths and hallucinations.

Posted by: gr8day4bsbll | February 13, 2009 10:18 AM | Report abuse

instead of the gop lies propelled by billie the bloodthirsty, you might also read the post by ed okeefe:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/federal-eye/2009/02/_sen_judd_gregg_said.html?wprss=rss_blog

Posted by: mycomment | February 13, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

I personally don't care for mr. kristols opinion on anything - his track record isn't exactly stellar.

Mr. Gregg - YOU solicited the position, and after weeks you just realized you had philisophical differences? Yeah, right. More like the strong arm nitwits in your party leaned on you. How to you walk upright without a spine Mr. Gregg?

Posted by: notfooledbydistractions | February 13, 2009 10:28 AM | Report abuse

"The story circulating among Hill Republicans....." stop right there. The notion that Gregg would pull out over this bizarre Census story- that just makes him look more of an idiot. The Republicans have not helped themselves with this. Gregg has certainly not heled himself, because he comes across as a moron. I don't know who is behind this current theme of behavior for the Republicans but they are all looking more and more like Rush Limbaugh- and that won't increase their share of the electorate. There are some key Democrats who need to go as well, but right now the Republicans are headlining the idiot show.

Posted by: poppysue85 | February 13, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Stupid decision to hire this whack . This is a man who was Bush's main cheerleader for the war in Iraq. During his time with the NYT his credibility was exposed . I only read his opinions so that I can make a comment addressing his bullsh-t. He may be in touch with the elite there in Washington but out here in the real america he is an idiot.

Posted by: grammy29649 | February 13, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Why are Republicans so mean spirited?

Posted by: spro | February 13, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Nevermind Kristol's minority political views, he's just consistently wrong. I think he wrote more retractions than articles at the Times.
Obviously WaPo is just looking for controversy to attract readers, truth be, er, banished.

Posted by: don1one | February 13, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Or there is always this angle.....

By James V. Grimaldi
Washington Post Staff Writer

A former top staff member to Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), who is President Obama's choice to be commerce secretary, has come under the scrutiny of federal prosecutors investigating the Jack Abramoff gifts-for-favors scandal, according to public records and sources.

Kevin Koonce, 37, who served as Gregg's legislative director and counsel for two years until 2004, is referenced, though not by name, in a plea deal outlined in court papers filed last week, according to people familiar with the circumstances of the events described in the documents.

In the filing, Koonce is "Staffer F," said the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the matter is still under investigation, and is described as allegedly accepting more than $10,000 in tickets, meals and drinks in exchange for official actions by the Senate office that were favorable to Abramoff's lobbying clients.

Posted by: truebluetexan | February 13, 2009 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Good grief... can't The Post do better than this? If Rahm Emanuel was Karl Rove on steroids as Mr. Kristol mind numbingly belches, then Mr Emanuel would be Prince Machiavelli himself. NO ONE is more despicable and shady than Karl Rove, despite Mr. Kristol's wishful thinking. This type of idiocy has already gotten Kristol booted from the NY Times. Not at all surprising that Fred Hiatt granted him sanctuary.

Posted by: CardFan | February 13, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

After being so elated that the NY Times dropped Kristol's contract, it is so disappointing to see him writing his nonsense here today because I would hate to think he could actually become a regular addition. Bill Kristol, do you really believe that anyone is listening to your excuses for the really bad bahavior of Gregg and all the rest of your partisan OBSTRUCTIONISTS? Due to their actions, we all know that they care nothing for the people of this country. No excuses can be made fr them - they are who they are - and we, the people of this country, will most certainly NOT forget them in 2010.

Posted by: MadasHelinVA | February 13, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Obama's efforts at bipartisanship are just "happy talk"? Truth is, the only time Republicans are remotely interested in bipartisanship is when they're out of power. Kristol is a piece of work. The past eight years he's been a leading spokesman for the people and policies that took this country to the brink of ruin; now he's flitting about criticizing those doing their best to save it. And WAPO has become the print version of Fox News.

Posted by: lobern | February 13, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Wait a minute...I thought we were only going to have to read this a-hole's blather once a month...and now after his 2/5 piece, he's on here again?

Dial it back, Mr. Hiatt...we aren't as good at fighting the gag reflex as you apparently think we are.

Posted by: achilli | February 13, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

I think David Corn of The Nation put it most eloquently a couple years ago.

http://www.thenation.com/blogs/capitalgames/153112

The market doesn't work -- not when it comes to conservative commentators.

Before the Iraq war, rightwing (and middle-of-the-road) pundits claimed Saddam Hussein was a dire WMD threat, that he was in cahoots with al Qaeda, that the war was necessary. The neoconservative cheerleaders for war also argued that an invasion of Iraq would bring democracy to that nation and throughout the region. They were wrong. But they have paid no price for their errors. They did not have to serve in Iraq. None, as far as I can tell, have had sons or daughters harmed or killed in the fighting there. They did not have to bear higher taxes, because George W. Bush has charged the costs of this military enterprise to the national credit card. Though they miscalled the number-one issue of the post-9/11 period, they did not lose their influential perches in the commentariat. Charles Krauthammer, Richard Perle, Robert Kagan, Gary Schmitt, Danielle Pletka and others (including non-neocon Thomas Friedman) who blew it on Iraq still regularly appear on op-ed pages and television news shows, pitching their latest notions about Iraq, Iran or other matters.

Foremost among this band is William Kristol, the editor of The Weekly Standard and former chief of staff for Vice President Dan Quayle. Kristol, a Fox News regular, has not seen his standing as a go-to conservative pundit suffered. Moreover, he has been rewarded with a plum posting. Time magazine's new managing editor, Richard Stengel, has invited Kristol to become what Stengel calls a "star" columnist for the magazine.

Posted by: B2O2 | February 13, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

You left out the part about Gregg being a skunk, William. But then again, there is always a lot you leave out when you write for the party.

I can't believe you are here again at the WaPo. The stable full at Fox?

Posted by: SarahBB | February 13, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

I hope the Post is not paying this dweeb for his drivel. He's added nothing to this topic that has not already been written, not even an attributed quote: just chat from unnamed Republicans, in an effort to spin the pat theory respecting an unholy politization of the Census Bureau. My Republican grandfather (a Census employee), used to worry about that sort of chicanery during the 1960 Census. Dump Kristol. He's a sham and a shame.

Posted by: jackson251 | February 13, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

It's your typical Republican chaos. It never ends. They can't make a committment and stick with it. It's the Bush attitude.

Posted by: mzbond | February 13, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

Headline should read, "Judd Succumbs to Republican Pressures, Decides to Be an Obstuctor Rather than Be a Constructor."

There is no 'bipartisanship' in Washington. It left on the same plane as LBJ. It is time for Pres. Obama to can the idea of finding noteworthy Republican officials to serve in his administration.

Commerce is really about trade. Go after the best, most prominent, apolitical businessman he can find. An independent minded innovative thinker who has no dog in the fight. Rather than seek bipartisan support look for the best nonpartisan support. That's the course to chart. Not Democrat, not Republican, just American.

Posted by: old_sarge | February 13, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Kristol can't even BS competantly without showing his trademark hypocrisy.

In the very same paragraph he says that "the Obama administration has taken on a surprisingly political and partisan cast." This not only turns reality on its head, but is nothing more than the familiar right wing tactic of projecting one's own failings onto your opponents. "Liberal Fascism" anyone? (the title of a popular new conservative book by National Review's Jonah Goldberg)

Then Kristol says: "Republicans on the Hill with whom I’ve spoken are in a sense relieved; they were worried that clever “post-partisan” or bipartisan tactics by Obama could split and weaken an already uncertain and demoralized GOP."

So, let me get this straight. Kristol is saying that Republicans were really, really scared that Obama was serious when he said both parties should work together in the public interest. But now that Obama has revealed himself to be a cynical partisan just like Republicans after all, Republicans are thrilled. That means they get to go right on being partisan obstructionists to their hearts content. And this is a good thing? Whew, that was a relief! Think of the horror if we had to work with Democrats for the common good? Thank you Mr. President, you're a real swell.

Posted by: TedFrier | February 13, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Only the Repubs would think one of their own looking like a fool is a victory.

Posted by: RightDownTheMiddle | February 13, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Those in the GOP, whose hell-bent stance is on being the Party of "NO", will find its return karma in 2010 and 2012 when the American public will also vote No! It is unfortunate for them that the GOP continue to Place themselves on the wrong side of history and that which is good.

Posted by: dsoulplane | February 13, 2009 12:05 PM | Report abuse

If attempting to have a grown up discussion about anything of a serious nature, one generally does not cite Wikipedia as a source. I guess real research would have taken time away from your name calling and rehashing your bitter feelings over the last 8 years.

Posted by: rockyourface | February 13, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Are you into leather William ? Somehow I have always pictured you getting spanked by the lead singer of Queen .

Posted by: jerseydevil | February 13, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Just how wrong do I have to be on virtually every subject to be given a column (and a lot of money presumably)at the Washington Post? Is there a special drawer marked "Failed Offensive Pundits" in which Mr Kristol's name is highlighted in big red letters? Does he perhaps have compromising photographs of senior people in the newspaper business?

Posted by: andy4 | February 13, 2009 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Why should anyone be surprised at not only the obstructionist attitudes of the congressional Republicans or at the action of Mr. Gregg.

For six of their eight years, the Republican control of congress isolated the Democrat minority from any imput to their legislation and blocked any Democrat attempt at their efforts to legislate. The final two years, with a change in the majority, the Republican became obstructionist in the blocking of anything Democrat and what they couldn't block, passed it on to the bush veto. They were not about America, they were about Republican power.

During those eight years, those with a different point of view was denied congressional representation. The Democrat gains of the final two years expressed the voter disatisfaction of the previous six but still because of the narrow majority, the Republicans still fought to deny any that didn't agree with them and to obstruct anything that didn't conform to Conservative ideology.

There is now a President that promised to be a President of all the people and his actions have proven his desire to do so. It is unfortuant that we still have a Republican congressional group that in placing party and ideology over people, continue to use obstructionship instead of bipartisanship, this time isolating their own party members from an opportunity to enjoy a say in government.

This must never be a one party country but it seems the Republicans must want that, if you consider the bush/chaney/rove power actions of the previous eight years and a continued effort by the Republican congress to refuse any compromise to their failed policys. There must be somewhere a few young Republicans that would consider the long term damage being done to their party through the obstructionist views of the Boehners, McConnells, and McCains, and know that there must be changes in the Republican party that would better represent the American public.

Posted by: 1ken | February 13, 2009 12:17 PM | Report abuse


tedfrier:
All Kristol is saying is that Obama's self-serving tactics will keep the GOP fired up. Obama is off to a rocky start, and in my opinion he is in over his head.

.

Posted by: Billw3 | February 13, 2009 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Kristol:

Could you tell me which team you think will win next year's Super Bowl so I can bet against them?

Posted by: emsaldanha | February 13, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse


"I can't believe you are here again at the WaPo."

Kristol is a great American, a man of great grandeur and splendor, admired by all. A lover of peace, protector of the downtrodden, always for the underdog, true-blue Odie Colonie.. Descended from Royalty. Constant as the north star, and there when you need him, with words that serve to inspire and enlighten...

.

Posted by: Billw3 | February 13, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

The real reason why Gregg decided it really wasn’t such a good idea to hook up with this administration is that he finally noticed that every time they hold a press conference, the market tanks. The 50-plus percent of responsible Americans who save and invest for their future are going to catch on to this sooner or later and when they do, they will suddenly recognize that the emperor (or, to be more precise, His Most Beloved and Exalted Excellency Barack Hussein Obama, the FIBPOTUS) has no clothes.

Based on results, specifically, his impact on markets and wealth creation (or destruction as the case may be) worldwide, which actually began to occur in October 2008 when it became obvious that he would win the election, the FIBPOTUS is already, far and away, the worst president in U.S. history.

Congratulations Jimmy Carter, you're now off the hook!

Posted by: PauvrePapillon | February 13, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

rockyourface - the people who write the entries at wikipedia are obligated to cite sources for each passage. If you are claiming that any of those things they cited Krystal as saying he did not actually write, you might simple google his archived columns and FoxNews appearance transcripts.

Krystal cannot run from his spectacular list of failed predictions any more than he can run from the blood of 600,000+ Iraqis who lost their lives because of him and other neocon pundits of his ilk.

What's sad is that this town used to have a newspaper that was not run by neoconservative propagandists. Now, the Post competes daily with the Moonie-owned Times for which one can be more out of touch with reality. Pretty amazing that they think they can sustain that business model in a town of mostly highly-educated Democratic-leaning people. It saddens me to say this as a longtime resident, but I hope the Post goes under sooner rather than later, and is replaced by a credible paper again.

Posted by: B2O2 | February 13, 2009 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Kristol: Much like your own obstructionist tactics, Gregg's withdrawal is an object lesson in 'brainus interruptus'. Ever hear of 'love em' and leave em'? Go find a real job.

Posted by: markomd | February 13, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Once there was a little blue hen who decided to grow some wheat. She asked the other animals in the barnyard, “Who will help me plant my wheat?” “Not I!” said the red dog. “Not I!” said the red cat. “Not I!” said the red pig. “Well, then,” said the little blue hen. “I will do it all by myself.” And she did.

The wheat grew tall and was ready to be harvested. The little blue hen said, “Who will help me pick my wheat?” ?” “Not I!” said the red dog. “Not I!” said the red cat. “Not I!” said the red pig. “Well, then,” said the little blue hen. “I will do it all by myself.” And she did.

Next, the wheat had to be taken to the mill and ground into flour. “Who will help me grind my wheat?” asked the little blue hen. “Not I!” said the red dog. “Not I!” said the red cat. “Not I!” said the red pig. “Well, then,” said the little blue hen. “I will do it all by myself.” And she did.

Finally, the flour was ready to be made into bread. “Who will help me make my bread?” asked the little blue hen. “Not I!” said the red dog. “Not I!” said the red cat. “Not I!” said the red pig. “Well, then,” said the little blue hen. “I will do it all by myself.” And she did.

The bread smelled so good when it was baking. All the animals’ mouths started watering as they gathered around hoping to get a piece of bread. “Who will help me eat my bread?” asked the little blue hen. “I will!” said the red dog. “I will!” said the red cat. “I will!” said the red pig. “No!” said the little blue hen. “You did not help me plant my wheat. You did not help me pick my wheat. You did not help me take it to the mill to be ground into flour. And you did not help me make my bread. I did it ALL BY MYSELF! And my little chicks and I will eat it all by ourselves!” And they did!

Posted by: hamishdad | February 13, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

Karl Rove on steroids? Is he kidding? Everyone knew Gregg could not possibly manage the census since he had come out so hard against funding it in a way that would make it more politically neutral.

And what is Kristol doing writing for the Post anyway? This right wing hack should go back to Fox. Is there really anyone out there who thinks anything he says is worth listening to?

Posted by: Politicus08 | February 13, 2009 12:47 PM | Report abuse

So, the Post hired Kristol to provide obvious and pointless conjecture. Wonderful.

Posted by: pejesq | February 13, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

sociopath:

"Someone whose social behavior is extremely abnormal. Sociopaths are interested only in their personal needs and desires, without concern for the effects of their behavior on others."

That describes Kristol to a tee.

Posted by: republican_disaster | February 13, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Give me a break. Gregg's decision is much more simply explained by pure politics. The GOP has made it clear they want to do anything to make Obama look bad. Cooperating with a bipartisan agenda doesn't accomplish that goal. A little political pressure and bam, suddenly Gregg is not interested in a job he actually lobbied for himself.

Posted by: MarcMyWords | February 13, 2009 12:57 PM | Report abuse

It's my understanding that Gregg actually approached the Obama administration about this appointment, not the other way around. Gregg's past includes trying to politicize the census process, which led to discussions by black and Hispanic lawmakers to derail his appointment. The decision to move the Census Bureau was based on these very legitimate concerns and Kristol's attempt to portray Gregg as the victim is ridiculous.

Also, I'm no Emanuel fan but to compare him to a parasite like Rove is disingenuous at best. While Rove may very well spend the rest of his life in prison (good things come to those who wait), Emanuel will continue to climb the DC political ladder, despite his short-temper.

It appears that Kristol's writing hasn't changed one iota since his days at the NYT - still full of half-truths and misleading statements.

Posted by: rkrenke | February 13, 2009 12:57 PM | Report abuse

With Kristol confirming the suspicion that Gregg actually withdrew because he wouldn't have total oversight on the Census Bureau he worked so long to defund, the situation looks even more shady. The Republicans really need to call all their allies and ask them to stop helping.

The mistake that Kristol and the other conservatives keep making is that they can't seem to remember that they lost the last election by a far greater margin than the "repudiated" Carter administration lost theirs. The Republicans have lost the position of "ethos" - the American people are far more likely to believe the president than any Republican in any "he said - she said" dispute.

Of course, I'm perfectly happy with them continuing to make that mistake all the way to November 2010.

Posted by: dj333 | February 13, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

So Kristol gives us speculation and rumor dressed up as opinion. Nothing new here.

Posted by: anth1 | February 13, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Great news that the Post has hired a conservative, greater news that the liberal wackos are so outraged..amazing how liberals are so illiberal and can't stand anyone's opinions but their own.... and are those all Iraqis posting the war rubbish?

Posted by: ginamallet | February 13, 2009 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Judd Gregg, shame on you. Republicans, shame on you. For those (wealthy Republicans like McCain who can't remember how many houses he owns) who still have a job, the stimulus appears to be an aloof philosophical academic debate; for the rest of us, it will likely determine if we can afford to eat and keep warm and dry in the foreseeable future. What Gregg and the rest of the elephant heads are really saying is "we don't want to get re-elected" and "we really want to see people suffer". Thanks to the republican mantra, my wife and I have already lost half of our retirement and soon will be too old to work. Somebody, just give me the double brompton cocktail now.

Posted by: the_piano_man | February 13, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

Kristol's deceptions remind me of something C. Vann Woodward once wrote about the dishonesty of George Fitzhugh, an antebellem Southern slavery apologist who argued that industrial workers who sought protection from the injustices of capitalism would find it -- not in socialism -- but in slavery.

Here is Woodward's description, which seems a fair description of Kristol as well: "For all his professed love of learning and devotion to logic, Fitzhugh was a propagandist and not infrequently displayed the tactics of that craft, as well as an occasional sample of its disingenuousness. He excused the irregularity of his warfare on the ground that it was necessitated by the nature of his adversaries. "They are divided into hundreds of little guerrilla bands of Isms," he said, "each having its peculiar partisan tactics, and we are compelled to vary our mode of attack from regular cannonade to bushfighting, to suit the occasion." And so he did, shifting his ground, masking his batteries, and resorting to a variety of tricks to confuse his opponents. He deliberately adopted a style, he said, "in which facts, and argument, and rhetoric, and wit, and sarcasm, succeed each other with rapid iteration." More serious was the damaging admission he made in a personal letter to his friend Professor Holmes in 1855. "I assure you, Sir," he wrote, "I see great evils in slavery, but in a controversial work I ought not to admit them."

Posted by: TedFrier | February 13, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

The only thing wrong with Kristol's opinion is that it's wrong according to Sen Gregg. But hey, let's not let facts get in the way of a self-serving opinion.

Does honesty mean anything to you people?

Posted by: mikem1 | February 13, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

PauvrePapillon wrote:
Congratulations Jimmy Carter, you're now off the hook!
_______________________

Dude! Carter's been off the hook for most of the last eight years. Bush even revived Nixon's image in the eyes of much of the country.

Posted by: dj333 | February 13, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

Maybe the GOP thinks this will help them, but again shows the short sighted nature of their concerns. They truly are still more worried about their grip on "x" amount of politcal power, and to hell with all the rest of the problems. Good. I predict (much more accurately than Kristol's Bush cheering predictions, I'll wager) it will be one of the last nails in the coffin for the Republican party. They still don't get it. Hurray! Only two more years til they're over....forever.

Posted by: blackmask | February 13, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Give the job back to former Senator Daschle, at least as a Democrat he was willing to work at the job; the Republican Gregg doesn't want a job or to work at re-building the destruction wrought by George W. Bush as long as he can live off the Senate welfare program. ...Now who's the partisan one...the Democrat who offered the job to a Republican, or the Republican who doesn't want to work???

Posted by: benighse | February 13, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Another stellar waste of space by Kristol. When will they learn??? WHEN???

Posted by: tonyfel1963 | February 13, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

I just listened to all sorts of Florida Republicans distance themselves from Gov. Crist (R-FL) because he appeared with the President to support the stimulus package. OK, he may have had some ulterior motives- like trying to save Florida - but these other Repugs only attacked Crist because he didn't kowtow to the Republican line and oppose WHATEVER a Democratic president proposed. The Republicans have yet to demonstrate to me that they have the interest of the country at heart and not their own tiny agenda.

Posted by: suwwichmann | February 13, 2009 1:18 PM | Report abuse

count me as unconvinced by anything kristol has to say, including his assurance that the sun will rise in the east tomorrow.

Posted by: jimfilyaw | February 13, 2009 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Gregg quit because he did not want a boss, thought he would be a free agent, and because he feared the ire of the weepublican party whose new motto is Politics Over Progress.

Posted by: rpmcestmoicoxnet | February 13, 2009 1:21 PM | Report abuse

As usual, Smilin' Billy Kristol has nothing of interest or value to say.

It's not difficult to understand why he's no longer at the New York Times.

The difficulty is in understanding why he's now at the Washington Post.

BTW, "Karl Rove on steroids" would be Barbara Bush.

Posted by: pali2500 | February 13, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Gregg the Socialist takeover movement by Pelosi and accomplices with a Trillion dollar falsely named Stimulus Package which will grow to 3 trillion if unchecked is something you don't want to be a pert of as a token bipartisan member.
FDR---Failed economy for eight years
Japan---more failed stimulus that kept them in a very low 10 year period.
Let the Democrats screw up the country by themselves like they did with FNMA and blocking all new practical domestic energy and just watching energy prices triple. You can work with the true Conservatives, not the moderates or Compassionate Conservatives to restore competence, responsibility and LIBERTY once again. Our forefathers after they gave their life blood to avoid the bondage of a big intrusive government would be appalled and heading toward Washington with tar, feathers and a rail.

Posted by: ekim53 | February 13, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

While the Post is retiring and firing newsroom journalists and editors in a desperate effort to save money, it is hiring the worthless, witless, NY-Times reject, Smilin' Billy Kristol.

The Washington Post deserves to fail.

Posted by: pali2500 | February 13, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Kristol, I'm sad to see that the WP has given you column space in which to spew your particular brand of neo-con tripe. I thought you'd left that sanctimonious mugshot of yourself behind at the NYT. But here you are, spreading your misinformation, and what better occasion to debut than on the story of the indecisive Sen. Gregg, who first campaigned for the nomination, accepted the nomination, then declined the nomination as President Obama's Commerce Secretary.

I cannot accept the notion that this man had disingenuously agreed to work with the administration until finding out the details of the census matter - at this level of government, nominees should be vetting the job even more rigorously than they are being vetted to preclude such an embarrassing conclusion. I believe that it's far more likely that the GOP, appalled at the appearance of bipartisanship on Mr. Gregg's part, had a little chat with him. Disgusting. Politics as usual with the GOP.

Posted by: borntorun45 | February 13, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Now that the GOP is a marginal fringe group, Kristol drops to a B-list rag and gets to be equally irrelevant.
Bad writing paired with no scholarship= Bloody Bill Kristol.

Posted by: rkeithgargus | February 13, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

He was asked to serve.

Not to rule.

The President decides the parameters of each job in his cabinet. Including the census, which undercounts homeless and minority populations (heck, we've got millions of illegal aliens in our country, but the GOP doesn't want to admit they exist).

Yet another show of bad sportsmanship by the America-hating GOP and their comrades on Wall Street.

Posted by: WillSeattle | February 13, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Billy Kristol is funny HA!HA! Great Comedian.

William Kristol is an IDIOT funny, (GOP) Grand Oil Party mouthpiece, minion of Satan's pack Dick Cheney, Heir Karl Rove, and so on. Hey, Will, talk about the Illuminati, let the American people know what these guys & gals are doing to not only our country America, but to the rest of the world. NEW WORLD ORDER!! the pathetic view of Ronald Reagan 40, BUSH 41 or is it happening right now?

WP, get a sense of class about you, rid yourself of this bum, William Kristol, NYT did!

Posted by: corrupt_goverment | February 13, 2009 1:34 PM | Report abuse

I am amused that the hate speech in these comments includes one post in which the author asks "Why are Republicans so mean-spirited?" This surrounded by posts spewing hatred against anything that doesn't toe the current Democratic agenda party line. I am not a Bush apologist, by the way--I am disheartened that the polarization of views and personalities in this country is so great that, at some point, something very bad is likely to happen.

Posted by: jshaver001 | February 13, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Please go away Mr. Kristol!!!!

Posted by: woohop | February 13, 2009 1:40 PM | Report abuse

This article is pearls to swine apparently. Does Mr. Kristol really expect that the readers of the Washington Post have the capacity to understand the implications of moving the census to Rahm Emanuel's to-do list.

I agree with the readership. Mr. Kristol should cease contributing to this rag.

In regards to the old boring hippy dippy war-protest song that these loonies are still singing: I'm so proud of how free Iraq is right now -- the recent election was heart-warming to watch. Great job military!! You are brave and self-less heroes. I'm sorry that these crunchy Washington Post reader don't appreciate what you've done, and I'm sorry that your current president does not appreciate you, but I'm sure the Iraqis do, and I certainly do.

Posted by: scecil1 | February 13, 2009 1:43 PM | Report abuse

lookout_63: You are WAY too smart and well researched for this blog. Don't you know, in order to comment on this blog, you are supposed to talk out of your.....?

Posted by: scecil1 | February 13, 2009 1:47 PM | Report abuse

B2O2: Hope Soros is paying you well.

Posted by: scecil1 | February 13, 2009 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Emanuel is "Karl Rove on steriods"? Really? Is there ANYTHING that the current GOP, and its apologists like Kristol won't say? Confident as I am that the Bush Administration will soon be widely considered the worst in American history, I am still amazed at how its participants and supporters continue to say whatever counterfactual thing that buttresses their singularly skewed world view. Emanuel may play hardball, but to compare him to Rove not only slanders Emanuel, it acknowledges that Rove's tactics were unacceptable if not outright illegal. Wow! I'm a huge WP fan all the way out here in California, but Kristol in this latest statement has only confirmed what we all already knew - that he's a hack, not even smart enough in defending his indefensible partisan position to realize that he's outed one of his own. Please WP...is this the best and brightest conservative mind that you could find?

Posted by: alisongkc1 | February 13, 2009 2:06 PM | Report abuse

I hope Bill Kristol is paying the Post to print his stuff and not the other way around.

Posted by: silverspring25 | February 13, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

I can't believe that this hack has found another willing outlet for his wrong-headed, ill researched, and completely useless comments on anything. Is the Washington Post so desperate to appease the right wing that they are willing to take the castoffs of the New York Times? Kristol is wrong almost all of the time, and yet there seems to be a never ending supply of media outlets anxious to have him on board. No wonder newspapers are on the ropes.

Posted by: charliem2 | February 13, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

It's simpler than you think, Mr. Kristol:

It's merely the current conflict of interest between being a decent citizen and being a Republican.
It used to be possible to be both.

Alas.

Posted by: wardropper | February 13, 2009 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Gregg's withdrawal will go down as one of the dumbest moves of all time.

It's right up there with McCain's decision to suspend his campaign so that he could rush to Washington and do nothing.

Of course, it is in a time of war and/or national crisis that Republicans show their true colors -- with refusal to serve one's President being high on the list.

For example, the Washington Post's own Michael Gerson deserted the White House and his President in a time of war so that he could offer himself to the highest bidder.

Let's see if the voters in New Hampshire will stand by the Gregg two years from now.

The safe bet would be that they won't. (Obama won New Hampshire by 9.6%)

And this could be why Gregg has said that he probably "would not" seek re-election in 2010.

Good. Another Senate seat for the Democrats.

In the meantime, Gregg can serve out his last two years as an irrelevant member of the minority Senate party.

Posted by: pali2500 | February 13, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

more noxious gas from the noted gas bag. Has anyone else noticed that Kristol has an exact inverted moral compass?
Mike

Posted by: michael5 | February 13, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

I join most other posters here in their indignation that Bill Kirstol should be allowed to write for WAPO. Disgusting!!!

What kind of readers those WAPO cater to?

Posted by: FedUp1 | February 13, 2009 2:19 PM | Report abuse

It was a brilliant pick by the Obama administration. They knew Gregg would withdraw, and look bad in the process. Senator Gregg was played. Chalk another one up for the GOP ( stands for gumps on parade). They seem to be a bunch of angry clowns. They would just as soon destroy America, rather than embracing equality and peace. They dare not stray from the fascist script by disobeying their corporate paymasters. They could be blackballed and become ex senators or congressmen. Then how could they lead their flock?

By the way Mr. Kristol, Israel has never been our formal ally. We never signed a military cooperation treaty with them. We really don't have any strategic interest at all in the Middle East. No country in the area poses an existential threat to America (except maybe Israel with its xxxxx number of nuclear missiles). We should stop meddling, selling weapons and let them work out their problems themselves. We have never been good meddlers in the lives of other countries. For the most part, especially recently, we have not helped these "partners" improve their civilizations and we have certainly not helped ourselves. Remember 9/11.

Posted by: ctator | February 13, 2009 2:33 PM | Report abuse

How much does Mr. Kristol pay to appear in your pages? Is this the rack rate or does he get a discount? Is this discount available to others?

Posted by: ChicagoPride | February 13, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

What a but whole Kristol is.

Posted by: hellslittlestangel1 | February 13, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

Who cares WHAT Kristol thinks or says about anything? The guy is a right wing toady who shills 100% for the Repubs. UGH!!!!!!!

Posted by: jdudzik | February 13, 2009 2:42 PM | Report abuse

and lets not forget, on Kristol's sunday morning FOX news talk show gig, he sang the praises of McCain's eventual VP pick, Sarah Palin over and over again. She turned to be a "dud" also. This guy has some track record.

Posted by: bestowens | February 13, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Twice during the press conference, Gregg was asked if the moving of the Census had anything to do with his decision. He said that it was a very small part of his decision making process. The simple truth is Senator Gregg didn’t want to spend the next two years under the constant assault of Limbaugh, Kristol, and company, and who can blame him.

Posted by: fultonda | February 13, 2009 3:16 PM | Report abuse

I see Kristol's name on a list of links to opinions, and my stomach lurches. It's not that he's conservative. It's that he's a cheerleading, fact-eschewing, spin-is-my-game, say-anything-to-support-my-preconceived-notions little cretin. Didn't his "if"-riddled "Why Bush Will be a Winner" column get it through the WaPo editors' heads that Kristol prefers to write about fantasy land, not the world in which the rest of us live?

Frankly, I'm *not* a knee-jerk liberal and would like to read reasoned, principled conservative points-of-view on day-to-day issues. Instead, WaPo gives us Kristol.

Do we need to shout it for WaPo to get a clue?

KRISTOL HAS NO CREDIBILITY!

P.S. Bill, time to re-activate your IAmSmarterThanYou sock puppet to rebut.

Posted by: multiplepov | February 13, 2009 3:18 PM | Report abuse

The editorial line-up at the Post now is so stacked with bizarro world neo-cons that methinks it's time to stop buying the Post. Ooops, I stopped buying it years ago!

Posted by: nickthap | February 13, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Kristol and the republicans are now a joke. Kristol and republicans now equal failure. God bless President Obama!

Posted by: JPGR | February 13, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse


Once, in times of national crisis, a politician would put aside his partisan views for the good of the country……..
It is sad beyond description for those times are gone………!

Posted by: pspurio | February 13, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Why are Republicans so mean spirited?

Posted by: spro | February 13, 2009 10:56 AM

**Uh, unlike all the kind and civilized discussion on this thread, eh? Do you people have any sense of the ironic at all?

Posted by: brad40 | February 13, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

The Obama team had certainly tried to meet with Senator Gregg's conditions in that they agreed to have the Democratic Governor replace Gregg as Senator with another Republican. The fact that Senator Gregg has also announced that he would not be seeking re-election suggests he is not happy with the Republican leadership of the Senate.

Posted by: Thependulumswings | February 13, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Of course Gregg specifically said the census was a minor matter but of course that doesn't stop Kristol DECIDING that it was a big deal. God this guy is so dishonest he makes Bernie Madoff look good. In the middle of all the dishonesty though what emerges is that the real Republican agenda is to squash any attempts at bipartisanship before they get started. For some reason Kristol thinks this is all passing unobserved in the country despite the fact that all the polls give Obama appros in the high sixties for how he's handling this and only gives the Republicans ratings in the low thirties. Kristol is one of the people responsible for getting the GOP into the fix it's in and he seems to think more of the same is the way out. More power to you Bill.

Posted by: johnbsmrk | February 13, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Why are Republicans so mean spirited?

Posted by: spro | February 13, 2009 10:56 AM

**Uh, unlike all the kind and civilized discussion on this thread, eh? Do you people have any sense of the ironic at all?

Posted by: brad40 | February 13, 2009 3:35 PM
********************
You haven't been reading these comments very carefully, do you? The attacks on Kristol are not due to him being a Republican. The attacks are on his history of writing speculation undermined by facts, on cheerleading instead of analyzing, on seeing every subject as an opportunity for spin.

Frankly, I feel affronted for Republicans that Kristol implies in this piece of drivel that he speaks for them.

Posted by: multiplepov | February 13, 2009 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Bipartisanship for the sake of it has always been overrated. And the notion that Obama valued bipartisanship was a joke after Rahm Emanuel's ascension to Chief of Staff.

Gregg's change of heart is no big loss for the Administration and no big deal for the country.

The Department of Commerce is a hodgepodge of miscellaneous -- an insignificant economic player. If you're interested in weather (NOAA) and fish then Commerce is a great place to work.

Posted by: DagnyT | February 13, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse


Kristol has no idea in H why Gregg changed his mind.

He's just another zionist mouthoff...increasinglyh frustrated because his ilk is being/has been debunked.

Posted by: whistling | February 13, 2009 4:17 PM | Report abuse

The neocon scum gets booted from NYT and WP gives him space?


Posted by: dogsbestfriend | February 13, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

The GOP and billy the kid have a huge problem because they have no new ideas. They spent 8 yrs proving their best solutions are horrendous problems. They can't unearth old goodies like: Dismantle soc. security so Wall St geniuses can handle your retirement money... Attack the wrong countries... Lower taxes on the people who need it the least... Value public deception over honesty etc.

My guess is the GOP and discredited, irritating pests like billy the kid, Gerson, Rush, Rover et al will become Nancy Reagans. They will just say NO to everything. But that won't win them support. They need to stop putting party over country. They will continue to be losers until they prove they can be civilized members of society with fair, practical policies for improvement.

Posted by: 1observer | February 13, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

William Kristol has the blood of over 600,000 Iraqi civilians on his hands. He should not be writing editorials in a local penny ads newspaper, let alone a supposed paper of record.

Posted by: B2O2 | February 13, 2009 9:41 AM

=====================

If you are not capable of addressing or refuting someone's arguments then you are of no use to anyone in a forum.

Posted by: robert17 | February 13, 2009 4:37 PM | Report abuse

As others have noted, Kristol is useful as a reverse weathervane. Whatever he says is most likely wrong, easily rebutted and will eventually require a correction.

Posted by: MarkWayneWhite | February 13, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

"The story circulating among Hill Republicans is that" jeez with crack reporting like that I'm convinced. Kristol couldn't be bothered to ask any involved party if they had a comment on what the water cooler gossip on the hill is. Hey guess what mister Kristol, the story circulating in the company I work for is that you are an idiot. Does that make it true?

Posted by: crete | February 13, 2009 4:46 PM | Report abuse

I do not rank Bill Kristol's cheerleading for the Iraq war to be his worst crime.

His worst crime is rallying the Republicans in 1993 to make sure that no health care plan passed. His calculation was that the passage of a health care plan would help the Democratic Party politically.

He is a self acknowledged propagandist who puts values only the power of the Republican Party. He places no value on truth or the welfare of the American people. Any power he is given by the New York Times or Washington Post will be used to disseminate his destructive, lying propaganda.

I can sympathize that it is nearly impossible to find a Republican voice with intellectual integrity. The Post should continue to look.

Posted by: copithorne | February 13, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

"...the Obama administration has taken on a surprisingly political and partisan cast." What parallel universe exactly are you inhabiting?

Posted by: Thad2 | February 13, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

Typical Bill Kristol: unsourced and innuendo-laden.

Posted by: HowardsJohnson | February 13, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

What was the thinking of the Washington Post when they invited comment from Kristol? He belongs with the Washington Times or Fox News.

Posted by: pkendall | February 13, 2009 5:13 PM | Report abuse

CDC FLASHPOST/EYESONLY/IMMEDIATE

WAPO EDCOM.

Kristol fatal virus. Note one year near death NYT. Est. 6 months WaPo. Terminate virus now. Decontaminate. Fumigate.

CDC FLASHPOST/EYESONLY/IMMEDIATE


Posted by: neo-constantine | February 13, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

"He belongs with the Washington Times or Fox News. "

Or Lorton prison, given his murder record. I suppose he could still blog for the Moonie rag from there if they let them do that sort of thing.

Posted by: B2O2 | February 13, 2009 5:26 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps Senator Gregg just didn't want to lower his standards and be considered part of the pack of tax cheats (Geithner, Killefer, and Daschle), corrupt and unethical politicians (Richardson, Solis). You know, typical Obamessiah cronies.........

Posted by: GordonShumway | February 13, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Who could have imagined that accepting a cabinet post with a Democratic administration could lead to internal conflicts for a Republican? It's not as though the nation faced multiple crises in areas such as the economy, military commitments, health care or trade.

And you know, you don't even have to use your imagination. You could reason your way right to a conclusion strongly resembling reality. At least a non-Republican could.

Kristol--he hears that Republicans are refusing to engage meaningfully in debate over how we can save the American economy and he imagines that voters will love them even more. Ah, yes. It is warm and cozy in his well-financed bubble. The din of the unemployed is faint--perhaps it is a babbling brook.

Posted by: MaryC1 | February 13, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

How regretful is it that Judd Gregg pulled out of contention when he had been so apparently in favor of accepting the appointment. I consider that a good omen. When 2 senators withdraw, maybe that means a senator should not get the job anyway. Let's get down to the crux of the matter. The post of Secretary of Commerce is of over-riding importtance at this critical time of economic crisis. We need a powerful can-do man in the job because the Department needs to revive our business and industry, exports and imports, and most of all needs to correct the trade deficit and bring back jobs and make us the great leader in industry and manufacturing we once were. That's the Department's job. You don't need a political animal to do that. WE NEED SOMEONE LIKE JACK WELSH WHO KNOWS HOW TO FIX THINGS FAST! TOO OLD? CONSULT WITH THE NATIONAL CENTER FOR MANUFACTURING SCIENCES IN ANN ARBOR, MI. THEY KNOW THE BEST CANDIDATES FOR THE JOB.

Posted by: StrategistforSuccess | February 13, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Hey GordonShumway--given the 14 yr track record of Republicans on corruption and cronyism, and their record of war profiteering in Iraq, it's kind of comical to hear your caterwauling about THIS Administrations few stumbles. Gregg left because he was pressured to do so by the Senate Republican Caucus, pure and simple. And Billy the Boob, who hasn't made a single correct political prediction in YEARS, should just write facts, not gossip. Of course,as Dan Quayle's Chief of staff he had little experience with facts or what was right, but he could try.

Posted by: bklyndan22 | February 13, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

I challenge the Post to get rid of Kristol.

Posted by: grammy29649 | February 13, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Please explain to me why this idiot still gets to write columns for major newspapers? He has never been right about a thing. He should be on trial for war crimes as a propagandist. He has no courage, intelligence or wit. He is a horse's rear. Let him get a job at Wal-Mart. I doubt he could handle it.

Posted by: SteveWhoThinksWerePastthePointofNoReturn | February 13, 2009 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Kristol has proved one tenet of the Republican Party, the trickle-down theory. He's trickled down from one of the last healthy newspapers in the US, the NYT, to one that's bleeding to death. One can only hope that he trickles down a little bit further into the Pennysaver and then into total obscurity.

It's going to take a long time and a lot of money to undo the horrific damage of the last 8 Bush years. In the words of my grandmother, "Little Billy, you're not helping!" Perhaps Mr. Kristol should apply at the Onion. They like his kind of creativity.

Posted by: Peggy_M | February 13, 2009 6:21 PM | Report abuse

William Kristol has the blood of over 600,000 Iraqi civilians on his hands. He should not be writing editorials in a local penny ads newspaper, let alone a supposed paper of record.

Posted by: B2O2 | February 13, 2009 9:41 AM

================

If you are not capable of addressing or refuting someone's arguments then you are of no use to anyone in a forum.

Posted by: robert17 | February 13, 2009 4:37 PM

================

Of course he's of use. He (or maybe it's a she) serves to remind us of the responsibility Kristol and his Project for the New American Century cronies bear for ginning up the drumbeat for a war that cost more than 600,000 Iraqi civilians their lives. You HAVE heard of PNAC and Cheney and Wolfowitz and Feith and their ilk, haven't you?

I swear, if we had Joseph Goebbels writing a column for the Post their would be some idiot defending its worth. Same difference.

Posted by: whatmeregister | February 13, 2009 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Ah Mr. Kristol, what a delight it is to read your columns! Truth is scarce these days, and it's comforting to know that you have actual sources who tell you what the real backstories are that substantiate your points. And with this administration, backstories and deceit have become the name of the game. I'll read you FOREVER, (plus watch you on Fox News with Bret Baier!)

Posted by: moonpalmetto | February 13, 2009 6:42 PM | Report abuse

Country first, huh?

Principles?

$5 TRILLION in deficits in 8 years, and never acknowledging it.

Gotta love Kristol's Bizarro world view.

Posted by: boscobobb | February 13, 2009 7:09 PM | Report abuse

It's so great to see Bill Kristol here at the WaPo, where neocons and war cheerleaders have been underrepresented for too long. Perhaps the idea is that, given that Kristol has been wrong about just about everything, and often disastrously so, he'll make his ideological pals look better in comparison.

Posted by: Bat99 | February 13, 2009 8:44 PM | Report abuse

LOL. So many posts for a conservative op-ed. The libtrard short bus caming to a screeching halt here. Back to your rubber conspiracy thinking rooms.

Posted by: 65apr | February 13, 2009 8:52 PM | Report abuse

Bill Kristol says the real reason Judd Gregg quit was the census, and Judd Gregg says the census was only a minor issue. Hmm, who to believe on this one?

Posted by: rickedelson | February 13, 2009 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Kristol:

You've been wrong about everything for years. Why should anyone listen to you? Sorry your gig at the Times didn't work out. (actually very pleased!)

Posted by: gwbush2323 | February 13, 2009 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Please tell me that Kristol didn't actually get paid for this will you!

Please !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh well, here's my think piece: (I think if this comes true I should get a high paying job with the Post also.)

In five years George W. Bush will be hailed as the greatest President since Abraham Lincoln. He brought peace and tranquility to the world, prosperity to the masses, and Democracy to all Nations.

God, I don't have a snowballs chance, do I?

Posted by: helloisanyoneoutthere | February 13, 2009 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Senator Judd Gregg resigned because he won't pass the smell test for confirmation regarding his relationship with Jack Abramoff. It is right here in the WaPo archives if you, Bill Kristol had bothered to check.

Judd Gregg will not seek reelection because he is tainted in the Abramoff scandal.

The Democrats will likely pick up another seat in the Senate in 2 years.

Posted by: goodcake4u | February 13, 2009 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Why is Kristol even given space in the Washington Post?? It gets my ire to even see his mug in a major news paper. It was nice to see him leave the NYT - most of his columns were just the rumor mill from his discredited fellow travelers in neocon/GOP circles. There is little deep thought in his writing. And what has he been right about in 8 years?

I can't believe I wasted even this much mental energy on Mr. Wrong.

Posted by: MMurphy3 | February 13, 2009 10:35 PM | Report abuse

Did you know Martin Luther King Jr. was a Republican ???? Interesting ....

Glad to see that Gregg withdrew ... from BO's admin ...

Posted by: 56lady | February 13, 2009 11:22 PM | Report abuse

Ha! Look who is at WaPo. Bill Kristol - the man who is wrong about almost everything, the man who loves invading other countries as long as he doesn't have to do the dirty work. Good choice, WaPo!

Mr. Kristol - It is disgusting to watch you conservatives salivating for the failure of President Obama's administration. Have you no decency, sir? Putting party before country doesn't win elections any longer, but, please, please, please keep it up. It will ensure that your party becomes even more irrelevant than it is now.

Posted by: judy_p01 | February 13, 2009 11:38 PM | Report abuse

I don't get why WP would hire Kristol. Didn't they see him on Jon Stewart? Jon asked him a question and provided some facts to back it up. He told Kristol the source was the NYT and Kristol said, "Consider the source". Jon railed on him, "YOU WORK FOR THE NYT!". That is the gratitude he gives to the NYT for giving him a voice in their paper. The same with the WP, I am sure Kristol thinks just as poorly about your paper as he does the NYT.

Posted by: microsdude | February 13, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse

Gregg's withdrawal had nothing to do with his Abramoff connections? Right. The story is just hitting the fan now.

Mr. Kristol, I suggest you Google it.

Posted by: mtw0310 | February 14, 2009 1:06 AM | Report abuse

Gregg can't work for a boss whose policies he does not support, good riddance. Where was Kristol's critic of Lott and the Texas redistricting (illegal). This is a power play by Obama to redistrict favorably toward the Democrats. Certainly areas of our country will be undercounted because of unsafe locales, but we must beware of overcounting in any formula. Kristol has supported the losing economic, military, low moral standard, and my way or the highway approach of Republicans during Dubya's reign. A winning bet is going against most anything he writes.

Posted by: jameschirico | February 14, 2009 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Gregg withdrew because he was beseiged with the haters threatening his manhood, life, the lives of his children, and his career if he served.

If you don't think that's possible, watch the freepers page for awhile... the hatred is palatable... Rush Limbaugh give them their orders, and they comply.

Public service these days is no place for cowards.

Posted by: dutchess2 | February 14, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

If you think Kristol and the republicans and the greed and the inhumanity are a thing of the past, pay attention:

26% of those workers laid off due to the recession and the bank and wall street crimes, are denied unemployment benefits by those employers who contest them on the grounds that workers with good performance reviews, and long service were discharged for cause. Thereby avoiding a good fourth of the cost of unemployment.

Where is Kristol's thundering denouncement of that practice?

Posted by: dutchess2 | February 14, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Nice floppy shoes Bill. Too bad about all those dead people, eh?

Posted by: branfo4 | February 14, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Obama should have picked intelligent people like Colin Powell & Chuck Hagel for the cabinet posts, to prove his bipartisan efforts,--not some one like Gregg who took for ever to decide something. You need sharp, bright people who can think on their feet, gregg is not one.
And please, WP, can you get rid of Kristol.

Posted by: sarvenk63 | February 14, 2009 10:13 AM | Report abuse

So Jack Abramoff's $50,000 in sports tickets to his office along with a European golf junket paid for by JA had nothing to do with his withdrawing his nomination?

Posted by: palnicki | February 14, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

Dear WashingtonPost.com,

Seriously, please no more William Kristol. I think I am not the only person who sees Kristol as thoroughly discredited.

I know newspapers believe in giving column space to both sides of an issue. However, that value does not obviate the need for credibility regarding the validity of the viewpoint expressed by one pundit or the other. Kristol lacks credibility.

Further the Washington Post brings into question its own journalistic expertise. Presenting Wm Kristol as a conservative pundit gifts him with unearned and undeserved prestige.

Surely Mr. Kristol has access to the Letters to the Editor pages and to the online Comments section in order to state his opinions should he feel strongly enough about a particular issue.

Thus, while I usually comment in a tongue-in-cheek fashion to many of the op-ed columns, I am quite serious in saying I find the choice of Wm Kristol as a conservative pundit worthy of column space odious.

Posted by: ChokoChuckles | February 14, 2009 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Kristol, please explain to us then why Gregg stated at his press conference that the census issue played so little a role in his decision that he wouldn't even entertain any qustions concerning it. Was he then lying? If so, this business of him being a principled and honorable fiscal conservative is nonsense.

Look. You have a track record Bill. On virtually every single major issue that has come up over the past 8 years, you were wrong. Even as recently as those hectic days just before the election, you were confidently telling us that we were going to be surpised on election day as Johm McCain pulled out that "inside straight" that you neocons were all hoping for in another eeked out victory that you could spin into a continuing mandate from the people for your silly neocon agenda.

Candidly Bill, you have zero credibility.

Posted by: jaxas | February 14, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

One other point here: One of my mother's favorite pieces of advice to me when I was wrestling with my own hormones during my adolescent years was the old admonition: "It takes two to Tango."

Why Obama's critics have not picked up on that is beyond me. You can hardly blame him if he holds out his hand and the republicans smilingly bite it.

Maybe you self absorbed beltway types think you have it all figured out. But if the polls are an accurate gauge, this is just another instance where the media narrative you are peddling is not being bought by the voters. When you are as high as 76% in the polls and the media is putting out a narrative that sounds as though you are about to be thrown out of office, you know that there is something wrong with the message they are putting out.

Posted by: jaxas | February 14, 2009 1:17 PM | Report abuse

William Kristol being given a column in the Washington Post proves, irrefutably, that no matter how misguided the analysis, no matter how consistently and empirically wrong one's predictions are... and no matter how flawed and twisted one's ideology - once you're a member of the club, you are guaranteed lifetime employment.

It's sickening. But it may underscore exactly how and why the newspaper industry is failing, both economically and as a watchdog for our nation.

Posted by: Malacandra | February 14, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

it doesn't really matter what reason is given, when you are offered a job and accept that job, then fail to show up for said job w/o a better offer from elsewhere, you are a tool, plain and simple. he had more than enough time for due diligence before accepting. the gop senate sure has some shining examples, larry "the toe tapper" and judd "the tool".

Posted by: phosgene | February 14, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Rahm Emanuel please do not choose to behave like Karl Rove. Our (the people)expectations are that you will assist in changing Washington politics; not have the same behavior.

Am very proud of you and ecpect more.

Thank you. GOD Bless America......

Posted by: lindarc | February 14, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

You can always tell when the left has taken a hit. They cry like Little Leaguers.

I just hope that after the Obama admin implodes the far left does the honorable thing; shut the garage and turn on the car.

Posted by: cshumake | February 14, 2009 8:29 PM | Report abuse

all BLAGO'd out huh? very interesting...
But dude...I want to hear more about Palin!

Posted by: opp88 | February 15, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

WHATS THIS GOT TO DO WITH ALL THE TEA IN CHINA?
_________________________________________

Did you know Martin Luther King Jr. was a Republican ???? Interesting ....

Glad to see that Gregg withdrew ... from BO's admin ...

Posted by: 56lady | February 13, 2009 11:22 PM

Posted by: opp88 | February 15, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

I hope you (THE WASHINGTON POST) did not sign a contract with Krisill and he's just a stringer. You know, the low thing on any list.
About So Jack Abramoff's $50,000 in sports tickets to his office along with a European golf junket paid for by JA had nothing to do with his withdrawing his nomination? With thanks to palnicki.
AND I heard Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.)say 'the census item was over blow en in the news that it was NOT that big of a deal.
As far as the statement 'muttering' of, small case, 'k'. "...the director of the U.S. Census Bureau would work under the oversight of senior White House aides (even as the bureau itself would remain, as the statute requires, part of the Department of Commerce)..." The Department of Commerce IS under the President control??? Check the Constitution.

Posted by: theemailman | February 15, 2009 8:22 PM | Report abuse

Republicans are saying that the Government is the problem here in the United States.

The stimulus bill according to the Republicans, represents a bill that would creat a larger Government here in the United States.

The stimulus bill according to the Republicans, represents a bill that would creat Socialism here in the United States.

ect. ect. ect.

Are these the arguments you Republicans are making?

What is your explanation for the Bush Administration?

Must you believe all is forgotten!


Posted by: opp88 | February 15, 2009 10:22 PM | Report abuse

Just want to say it's so great to see the WaPo is making space for the mentally challenged.

Will Kristol be replacing Ignatius, or will we be treated to 2x the babbling inanity?

Next week: Why clean water is bad for you, and how the Republicans are going to stop the Afghanistan war with tax cuts.

Posted by: jvill | February 15, 2009 11:55 PM | Report abuse

I support the Post publishing Kristol on a regular basis, if only because he has been so consistently wrong on every single subject on which he's ever expounded that, by reading his blather, the truth becomes obvious. Bill Kristol is Opposite Man.

If Bill Kristol says water is wet, you know it's turned dry. If he espouses a belief in the theory of evolution, we will all be forced to take long, hard look at the tenets of creationism.

Posted by: Generik | February 16, 2009 12:50 AM | Report abuse

BK's words are like warmed over spit
taken from the NYT spittoon.

Posted by: printthis | February 16, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Please kill me now. Why did the WaPo hire this nutcase when he lasted but a year at the NYT? Not only does he never use facts in his writing, he must spend about as much time as I've spent writing this comment, writing his entire column. How much are you paying this idiot? I'm available for half.

Posted by: mizerello | February 17, 2009 3:38 AM | Report abuse

People shouldn't be so hard on Billy Christol I think he's a very funny guy. Why doen't the Post also get Meg Ryan?

Chris Brown

Posted by: chrisbrown1 | February 17, 2009 7:05 AM | Report abuse

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