I woke up early this morning and started reading the excerpts and the coverage of the book by former Bush press secretary Scott McClellan. McClellan has written a book that is highly critical of President Bush and his administration.
Scott McClellan was a very substandard press secretary. He bumbled his way through press conferences and routinely looked like a scared deer in the headlights. He was outsmarted every single day by the Washington press corps. Had you asked me this a month ago, I would have had the exact same answer: McClellan was bad.
In fact, I would have criticized the Bush administration for its loyalty to this old Bush Texas buddy. I would have said that Bush has always been too loyal and held on to politically ineffective associates for too long (i.e. Secretary Rumsfeld). McClellan would never have been press secretary for any other President. He was not a media professional and barely a political professional. President Bush gave him a podium he didn't deserve. Recall that McClellan was replaced by the brilliant, highly polished, and greatly experienced Tony Snow. That wasn't by accident.
How does McClellan repay this loyalty? By writing a hyperbolic, highly critical memoir designed only to line his pockets during a politically charged time in our nation. This book will sell and make McClellan a wealthy man. He will have attained that wealth by selling out his friends and by selling out the President of the United States.
McClellan owed a duty of loyalty to the President of the United States because without the President, McClellan would be unknown outside of Austin, Texas. President Bush exhibited loyalty to McClellan by promoting him inside the administration and giving him this pulpit.
Is this sour grapes from a Republican who doesn't like the criticism of the Bush administration? No way. There is plenty of criticism of this administration and a 30% approval rating existed before any "scathing memoir." I recognize the errors and the political problems of this administration. I titled this blog post "loyalty" because I believe strongly in that virtue. I would cite Scott McClellan to Chapter 9 of William Bennett's book, "The Book of Virtues." It is a virtue that Scott McClellan forgot.
Shame on Scott McClellan.