To the extent that he can, George Bush will try to distance himself from any admission of personal culpability for the Katrina disaster.
He may repeat his weak-assed admission of responsibility, but only behind the shield of the presidency, which is not an admission of personal wrongdoing. In other words, as coach, he has to take responsibility, though it was the team that fumbled and bungled and dropped the ball.
Other likely rhetorical tactics:
- Spread the blame from top to bottom, local to federal, so that it’s as thin as possible, but still besmirches Blanco and Nagin.
- Talk about learning lessons.
- Talk vaguely about restructuring FEMA, but keeping it under DHS.
- Appointment of a “czar” to appear to be taking meaningful steps, but giving him no real power (see “drug czar).
- At least nine separate deer-in-headlight expressions.
- At least six instances of facial expression not matching emotional content of words.
- At least four interesting mispronunciations.
- Rise of 2.5 points in approval rating.