Friday, September 18, 2009

Czar Comparison Guide - Bush vs Obama

The White House's current justification to the long and growing list of 'Czars' is to point to the last administration. They say that former President Bush had a lot of czars that people did not complain about so the current criticism is just partisan. As the Washington Post points out, there are some important differences. The argument is also similar to the flawed one highlighted in Berman Post: The National Debt Road Trip (Federal Deficit Visualized). Also, there were people who did not like some of Bush's czars nor his expansion of the use of czars (Bush was not the first President to create them).

"The Washington Post offers a handy guide that demonstrates the dishonesty in the White House response:

What we can see here is that Bush created five non-confirmed positions in his administration — in eight years.  Of those, three fall solidly within the executive branch’s authority for national security and diplomacy: WMD, terrorism, and Sudan.  Nevertheless, those positions should have had Senate confirmation if they enforced regulation, which would have been questionable for any of these five.

In contrast, the Obama administration has created 17 “czar” positions in seven months, all but one of which avoid Senate confirmation and Congressional oversight."

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