Although I don't approve of Barack Obama, I am still excited at the prospect of fresh blood in the White House. He has proven himself to be smart enough to surround himself with seasoned Clintonistas, even though his appointments nullify his "Change" mantra.
Of course I would have preferred someone more moderate, but at this point it is tempting to hope that anything is better than our current nothing, George Bush. And therefore I hope, and have been praying, for Barack Obama now that he has been elected.
In the news today, Bush is overseas to potentially wreak a little more havoc before he's forced to vacate on January 20th. After that, who knows? Is he currently lining up his next gig, and if so, who wants him and why?
And what are his last minute plans? Wouldn't it be interesting to be a fly on the wall of the Oval Office as he puts together his list of final Presidential Pardons? Who will be included on that list?
Looking over Bush's myriad scandals, I believe that he will cull out of that group the following people for pardons:
1. John T. Korsmo
2. Scooter Libby *
3. Alberto Gonzales
4. Janet Rehnquist
5. Joseph Schmitz
6. Lurita Doan
7. Alfonso Jackson
8. Karl Rove
9. Richard Armitage
10. And finally, Dick Cheney is a possibility.
Let it be noted that there are times a Presidential Pardon is issued because the President realizes that further scandals and prosecution may be on the way, and I feel that these people have the potential for that even if they're not currently convicted or under investigation.
I'm sure that there will be a number of people added to this, and although I haven't included anyone attached to the Abramoff scandal, it's quite possible that those who were involved in it (which numbered at least 5-10 high ranking officials) may be included in the pardons as well. The only reason I feel that Bush may hesitate here is that issuing a pardon tends to indicate a President sanctions the behavior. Therefore, Bush will probably be advised to pardon only those who were acting in his best interest alone.
What is of great concern is the fact that Bush, who is notoriously war-happy, may decide to bomb Iran last minute, or participate in some other form of militaristic chest beating. This isn't to say that Iran doesn't richly deserve it. However, it would be a futile exercise this late in the game.
Bush currently has very few supporters left, and even the largely gullible religious right has come to realize that his claim to be a Christian was simply an attempt to pander to them. His current approval ratings hover around 28% or less.
If Bush wants to ensure any positive positioning in the history books whatsoever, he needs to exit on tiptoes.
*Yes, Bush already gave Libby a partial pardon. Many suspect it was only partial because Bush and Cheney felt a strong need to distance themselves from the man who was merely doing their bidding. But out of loyalty, Bush may now fully pardon him.