November 28, 2004


Gramm looks good for Treasury (ROBERT NOVAK, November 28, 2004, Chicago SUN-TIMES)

With Treasury Secretary John Snow's continuation in office uncertain, the White House is seriously considering former Sen. Phil Gramm of Texas as his possible successor.

President Bush has never been an intimate of Gramm's, and did not think of him for Treasury four years ago when he made the disastrous choice of industrialist Paul O'Neill. However, according to sources close to the president, he is giving his fellow Texan a serious look this time. Gramm is now an investment banker.

Mr. Gramm is one of the real heroes of the Republican realignment--blazing the trail that the President followed in TX, in particular--and deserves to be rewarded. Plus, it'll be nice to have hhim in town working on getting his friend Ben Nelson to switch parties.

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 28, 2004 10:20 AM

The inevitability of Phil Gramm's nomination at Treasury is wonderful. However, it makes one wonder even more why the GOP Senate elevated Liddy Dole, wife of the senior zombie from Kansas, to their Campaign chair.

Posted by: Bart at November 28, 2004 10:55 AM

She's smart, articulate, well-connected, and hard-working. She's an ideal choice. Moreover, she won a tough race by running on principle, which makes hers a story she can sell to folks she's recruiting to run.

Posted by: oj at November 28, 2004 11:06 AM

She's a backdoor way to bring the most vile member of the GOP back into prominence. This clown, the Santa Anna of the GOP, led us down to defeat more times than it is necessary to count. If she dropped him off at Dr. Kevorkian's and took back her maiden name, I'd feel a lot better about her.

The North Carolina race was a walkover. If my dog got the GOP nomination, he'd have won by a landslide. She got the nomination because the Zombie leaned on his GOP contacts to chase everyone else out of the race. This is hardly the story to sell to prospective candidates, of whom there will be boatloads.

My fear is that she will use her position to screen out people who would try to help Bush and the conservatives to change the way things are done in DC and elevate people who would be in thrall to K Street just like her limp-membered husband, the Dracula of the Plains was for a half century or so. That is the last thing we need because it would be selling our base down the river.

Posted by: Bart at November 28, 2004 11:24 AM

Is it just me or is Novak becoming an even bigger jerk? What "disastrous" consequences occurred as a result of thenomination of O'Neill?

Posted by: Earl Sutherland at November 28, 2004 11:29 AM

As I recall, one of the first things O'neill did was to make a speech saying that taxes were too low---DIRECTLY opposing what his boss had said immediately before.

Posted by: ray at November 28, 2004 11:44 AM

"her limp-membered husband"

I take it you're not fond of Bob Dole.

O'Neill apparently was not a disaster, just irrelevant and a waste of time. Which tells me that Sec of Treasury may or may not be an important position depending on whether the President wants it to be.

Gramm has in the past tended towards lower government spending and lower taxes. I hope that is Bush's program for the next four years.

Posted by: h-man at November 28, 2004 12:05 PM


When you do Viagra ads, you become a target.

Gramm matters not just because he wants less spending and lower taxes but because he wants to change the tax code and weaken the IRS' power over the individual citizen.

Posted by: Bart at November 28, 2004 12:11 PM


Ted Kennedy is one of the most influential people on the planet.

Posted by: oj at November 28, 2004 12:19 PM


Sez you. Maybe you and him could take a drive some night.

Posted by: Bart at November 28, 2004 7:44 PM

In staffing his administration Bush has, more often than not, successfully picked the right person for the right job. I was only vaguely aware that Phil Gramm was being considered for the Treasury job, but I think he would be an excellent choice.

Posted by: J Baustian at November 28, 2004 8:54 PM


He beat the rap, no? That's power.

Posted by: oj at November 28, 2004 9:29 PM

I don't want to be the skunk at the garden party, and I do not care if Phil Gramm reminds folks of ET (so did Willie McGee late of the St.Louis Cardnals who was a very fine ball player). I liked Phil. I loved his accent and his little homilies. But.

But his wife was director of Enron and I think she is still highly radioactive.


Posted by: Robert Schwartz at November 29, 2004 12:02 AM

Enron connections don't keep Paul Krugman off the Times Op-Ed page.

Posted by: Bart at November 29, 2004 5:42 AM

Bamboozling a typically stupid jury makes him no more influential than OJ Simpson.

Posted by: Bart at November 29, 2004 5:47 AM