All good things come to an end; and most bad things do too.
Karl Rove’s tenure as right-hand man to President Bush is marred by what could be considered negative successes. Whatever President Bush wanted done, Rove made it happen. Unfortunately, while his actions achieved results, they also produced consequences.
Rove announced he was leaving Bush’s staff last week, putting an end to a divisive chapter in U.S. politics.
According to CBS, the Bush/Rove relationship stretches back more than 30 years, and Rove helped Bush capture the Texas governorship 14 years ago. This was the first in a string of many Bush victories for which Rove was the “architect.”
Most architects’ work can be observed long after they retire. Rove is no different.
Helping Bush reach the White House in 2000 is, of course, synonymous with controversy. Helping the Republicans gain two seats in the Senate in 2002, as well as eight in the House, Rove was accused of dividing the nation with the simple goal of pushing an ideology.
Rove further divided the electorate in 2004 by casting war hero John Kerry as a cowardly flip-flopper.
During a time that is supposed to be the defining moment of our generation, we are hearing reasons why we should dislike, and even hate, our fellow Americans. If we disagreed on military action in the Middle East, we accused each other of being a warmonger or a terrorist sympathizer.
As the 2006 mid-term elections approached, Rove made clear his intentions of achieving a “permanent Republican majority,” according to the Huffington Post from Nov. 16, 2006. The word “permanent” should have no place in any part of government, especially one as misguided as the Republican majority of the Bush presidency.
Rove and the Bush Administration were willing to do almost anything to pass their agenda into law, even if it meant dividing the nation, smearing opponents and accusing critics of being unpatriotic.
Luckily, Americans wised up to the rhetoric spilling from the White House and voted for change in November. However, not everyone will learn from the Rovean mindset.
Of all the critiques of Hillary Clinton, one of the only merited attacks was that she is too divisive. Anyone who stands in her way will be sorry, no exceptions. Clinton has criticized Bush for the very thing of which she has been accused. If the polls tell the truth, we could have four more years of being a house divided.
The Bush crew has gone over quite a makeover in the last seven years. Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Ashcroft and Powell are all enjoying more time with their families. Now Karl Rove can enjoy vacation time.
Congress and the American people now understand the Karl Rove way is the wrong way of doing things. Perhaps Bush will join this fraternity as well. No matter if he does or doesn’t, Rove’s architecture will stand the test of time, and like historians admiring the work of the Roman Coliseum, we will stand in awe of the sheer magnitude and magnificence of Rove’s work long into the future.
Hopefully the Coliseum will have the longer life.
Owen Kennedy is a senior in human resource management. Please send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.