Rehabilitation of Bush Legacy Well Under Way

Need proof? See Obama's early moves, writes Krauthammer
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 16, 2009 10:08 AM CST
President-elect Barack Obama finishes speaking about the economy, Thursday, Jan. 8, 2009, at George Mason University in Fairfax, Va.    (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
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(Newser) – Nixon aside, no president since Truman has left office as unpopular as George W. Bush, writes Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer. But while it took decades for Truman's reputation to be restored, "Bush's rehabilitation will come sooner—in fact, it has already begun." The proof? Barack Obama deferential transition, "a startlingly early sign of a newly respectful consideration of the Bush-Cheney legacy."

It's not just that Obama has kept on Robert Gates at the Pentagon and given the Treasury to Tim Geithner, who Krauthammer calls "instrumental in guiding the Bush financial rescue." More than that: Obama is now understanding the virtues of warrantless wiretapping, "enhanced" interrogation techniques, and even detention without trial. "The very continuation by Democrats of Bush's policies," writes the columnist, "will be grudging, if silent, acknowledgment of how much he got right."