There is a search on in the White House (search) for someone brave enough to tell the boss when his practice debate answers just aren't cutting it.
You will notice that when Bush gives a good long speech to the Congress, or the United Nations General Assembly (search) it is not only weighted down with gravitas — an essential ingredient for presidents — but bold positions and well articulated reasons for taking those positions.
But when the president — and I like him, mind you — speaks off the cuff — debates, news conferences, whatever — he tends to make big things into small sentences: The war in Iraq was right. Saddam was a threat. See, we can't let threats gather.
Now, those are all good thoughts Mr. President, but we could do with a bit of expanding.
See that tall skinny guy over there who wants your job? He can expand endlessly. His trick is a little more difficult. It involves fifty pounds of you know what in a five pound bag... harder to do.
Your job, Mr. President is to expand just enough on your themes that there are some actual meat on the bones.
Don't get me wrong: I do think there is plenty of meat on the bones we call Saddam's regime change. When John Kerry says Saddam didn't attack us, I want to stand up and scream: Do we really have to wait till he does? Jeez Louise, can't we engage in the vision thing? Take a look at his attitudes and desires and capabilities and maybe decide this is a problem that needs taking care of?
Come on, Mr. President explain that stuff.
The reason the American public hasn't given John Kerry the job even though they gave him the debate, is that Americans know what Bush means. They know Saddam was a threat. If Bush doesn't explain it to John Kerry's satisfaction, that doesn't make it less so.
That's My Word.
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