Who'll be in George W. Bush's cabinet?
By Steve Myers
You see them all over the place around here: in Washington's poshest restaurants enjoying hefty expense account lunches, popping into the plastic surgeon's office for a quick peel or a facelift, huddling together at upmarket functions discussing in animated whispers the latest phone call to Austin's Governor's Mansion.
They are Washington's permanent Republican faces, and they've been pacing the floor for seven long years, waiting diligently for the return of the White House. Some are working as lobbyists, others are writing books, and all are biding their time, as they wait hopefully for a phone call from 'Dubbya'. They show their smiling faces, and very often their smiling checkbooks, whenever the Republican Dauphin appears. In the past month, the pace has quickened as it has dawned on the faithful that George W. Bush now looks virtually certain to become the first son to follow his father into the White House since John Quincy Adams in 1824. One can't blame the enthusiastic supporters: all the signs are there to be read.
This week, the Republican establishment turned out in force at the Washington Hilton to swoon over their man, who handily relieved them of several million dollars, exactly a year after his first fundraising dinner here. This time, however, he didn't even give them a meal in return, but they were all there anyway: lobbyists, former Cabinet members, lawyers, contributors, wannabes, and the odd media personality, many of whom have been hiding themselves discreetly away in Washington's leafy suburbs.
We should mention - without much modesty - that Exegesis readers were told all this on January 24, 1997: "It is widely believed that 'the powers that be' are looking favorably on Texas Governor George W. Bush as the next President."
On June 15, 1998, we added: "The media are tanned, rested and ready to lie, distort and manipulate. Their goal this time round is the election of a Republican. Why a Republican? Because, bless their sensitive little noses, they and their hidden masters have detected that America is ready for a Republican president, and to keep the two-party deception alive, the voters must be given what they think they want. In this case, it's almost certainly Gov. George W. Bush. The establishment operates seamlessly from one election to the next, and Mr. Bush has assembled a formidable staff, some of whom began their labors for him the morning after the 1996 Dole defeat."
There will even be a reappearance of Billybob Clintondole, the 1996 candidate, this time as cheerleader, in the upcoming Gorebush season. Yet unlike 1996, Mr. Bush will enjoy a huge margin of victory. Al Gore will have been told already, as was Mr. Dole in 1996, that he has been chosen to lose, and will be suitably rewarded for doing so gallantly.
So, after millions of dollars have been drained from well-meaning folks in order to maintain an appearance of effecting what has already been determined, there will begin another season of bogus opinion polls, pseudo-electioneering, misleading predictions, half-truths, slanted remarks and meticulously scripted bias from the media. Then, George W. Bush will likely step up to the podium on the US Capitol's West Front on January 20, 2001 to take the Oath of Office, quite possibly with Elizabeth Dole as his Vice-President, as the new President's proud parents beam in delight and Washington's Republican establishment salivate excitedly about all the gold-rimmed invitations to dinner at The White House they earnestly hope and fully expect will be popping through their mailboxes for the next eight years. No wonder they're brimming with excitement and seem eager to part with their cash: to them, it must feel just like 1980 all over again.
So who will be in Mr. Bush's Cabinet? As we sift through the clues and observe the scene, we can make some reasonably educated guesses. First, are there leftovers from previous administrations? In this case, after an eight year gap, most have gone on to more lucrative professions and many have lost the appetite for front-line politics. An exception is retired General Colin Powell. While he has firmly ruled out a run for elected office, he longs to run the State Department, where he would pursue the same New World Order friendly policies as Madeleine Albright, but these days, that's expected from any incumbent.
Next, as we glimpse at the fertile field of presidential candidates, we see those who are running solely to establish their credentials as Cabinet members. In this category, we find Senator John McCain, whose fundraising is second only to that of Mr. Bush. He may be offered the Defense Department, while Steve Forbes would enjoy the chance to implement a flat tax at Treasury. Former Vice-President Dan Quayle has boxed himself into a unique corner. He could not accept a cabinet position without losing face, yet cannot credibly continue his faltering campaign. He is losing staff to Mr. Bush, and really ought to have taken the wise advice to pursue only his golfing ambitions. Likewise, plaid-shirt salesman Lamar Alexander closed his Washington DC office ten days after opening it, and will not be rewarded at all.
Alan Keyes, Gary Bauer, and Senator Bob Smith are in the race for entirely different individual reasons. They all have a genuine conservative Christian message to advance, and certainly Alan Keyes can afford to campaign until the very end. Senator Smith has hinted at running on a third-party ticket. Patrick Buchanan will probably return to CNN, and John Kasich is still best employed on Capitol Hill. Senator Orrin Hatch confidently opened his campaign this week by saying it would take a miracle to elect him. Of course, he doesn't expect to be elected. Rather, he's hoping to move across the street to the Supreme Court; he knows at least two vacancies will occur during Mr. Bush's presidency, and he would really like one of those seats.
Others waiting on the sidelines include Rep. JC Watts, Kay James and former Republican Party Chairman Haley Barbour. JC Watts, who recently started the American Renewal Political Action Committee (The Chairman of the American Renewal Foundation is honored by his choice of name!), would make a superb General Chairman of the Republican National Committee. There is a mutual need too. The RNC needs a gifted, eloquent conservative, and he needs increased visibility to further his ambitions, rumored to be Governor of Oklahoma or a Senator. Mrs. James has just resigned as Dean of Regent University's School of Government and is writing a book. She is well placed to be offered the Department of Health and Human Services, having served in that position under Virginia Gov. George Allen, and as a White House adviser on that subject to Mr. Bush's father. Haley Barbour, currently earning a pile as a lobbyist, may well have his eye on succeeding Janet Reno as Attorney-General. At least he'd be much better looking.
Little of this resembles Americans' true wishes. In last week's Iowa straw poll, Alan Keyes beat George Bush 32-18 per cent. But George Bush it will be, so we may as well expect it. His administration has to be better than the current one, but real change cannot come until the electoral system allows all parties to compete equally, and is free from vote-rigging, and that won't happen until the Elite are deposed.
We must summon the courage to expose evil and restore freedom. As we have pointed out before, Christians are not here to negotiate a truce with evil: we are here to triumph over it, and with God's help, we shall. It will be a blessed day when an honest electoral system replaces the exhausting, mind-numbing cycle of pretense, rigged primaries, biased media and fake results. Meanwhile, let's remember that God sees it all. "He brings princes to naught and reduces the rulers of this world to nothing." (Isaiah 40:23). So let us not be overtaken by discouragement or despair, but let us keep faithful in prayer.
One of the busiest men on the Internet, Steve Myers can be found at http://www.sm.org/.
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