Just after George W. Bush became president, many journalists were uttering a lament that transcended politics, ideology or government. President Bush was just going to be so boring.
Well, I mean, it’s hard to match 1998 with the Lewinsky scandal, impeachment, the Balkan wars, and everything else. But President Bush is really giving Bubba a run for his money.
What do we have? The War on Terrorism, the return of structural deficits, and now a scandal that is spreading out through the administration like a splash of ink seeping into the fibers of a paper towel.
This article says the Justice Department has ordered the White House and the rest of the executive branch to preserve all documents that “relate in any way to Enron’s financial condition and/or business interests.”
It’s worth noting that the order goes back to January 1st 1999 — half way back into the second Clinton administration. No doubt the White House will note that. Unfortunately, for them, it doesn’t matter.
This is the kind of announcement that gives press officers and political operatives cold sweats. Does this mean the Bush administration did anything wrong? Of course not. But it does mean that the Bush White House is now part of a criminal investigation. And it becomes very, very difficult for anyone at the White House to say this isn’t a political scandal. Fair, or not.