Wednesday, July 13, 2005

The Truth Behind Thune's Sticky Situation

Man, this one is icy like the junior high girls sleepover turned jealous. John Thune, junior Senator from South Dakota, currently finds himself locked in a battle with the White House (specifically the Department of Defense) over its targeted closing of Ellsworth Air Force in South Dakota. A major part of Thune's campaign against former Senator and Senate power broker Tom Daschle was his pledge to keep Ellsworth open at all costs. He highlighted his connections with the White House as the ticket to the base's survival. Now, however, the Pentagon has slated Ellsworth for closing, a move that has Thune scrambling. As he eyes reelection in the future, he's seeing a massive Democrat attack against his supposed failure to deliver on the Ellsworth matter. In short, goes the thinking, he'll look like the ultimate fresh-faced stooge.

But let's think about this one for a bit. Suppose Daschle was in power at the present time. While Daschle has made no small matter of his claim to have previously saved Ellsworth, does one really think that Daschle would be able to do anything more to save Ellsworth were he in office? Negatory. One might say that Daschle wields power in the Senate and could use it to stymie Republican efforts to appoint, say, John Bolton as UN ambassador. Hold on for a sec, though; the Dems already oppose Bolton en masse. Daschle's addition to the mix wouldn't change much at all. Perhaps there are other tricks Daschle could pull; I'm not sure, though I will say this: Thune looks to be no gutless foil. He seems to be a tough cookie. Hopefully, he can endure any hue and cry that might be raised over Ellsworth's closing, if it does happen. You never know, though. Sometimes the parents get called, and in that case, the party's over, for photogenic senators or teenage girls.


Blogger Trent Dlugosh said...

If Daschle had been elected Ellsworth would never have been put on the closure list. How can I say that? Take a look at the states that where left un-touched by base closings and compare that list to the list of House and Senate leaders, both majority and minority leaders. You will find that not one of the leader's state's has a base targeted for closure. Remember, Daschle was the Senate Minority Leader before Thune's slime campaign sent him packing.

7:03 AM  

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