Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Help Wanted on Pennsylvania Avenue

Newsweek published a piece titled, "Help Wanted: Why Can't the President Fill Two Top Terror Jobs?" It implies Frances Townsend's Homeland Security Adviser position is radioactive, as no candidates will touch it. I had to comment:

I'm surprised the authors had the gall to mention Hurricane Katrina and Fran Townsend in the same sentence. She was on a plane to Saudi Arabia while George W. managed the response from the White House. Then the Bush administration wouldn't turn over e-mails between Andy Card and Mrs. Townsend to a Congressional Committee doing its own Katrina investigation.

But it gets better. Fran omitted any mention of the hospital with the largest number of patient deaths post landfall. LifeCare had been purchased just weeks before by the Carlyle Group, the infamous private equity underwriter with a Pennsylvania Avenue address. Come to think of it, I can see why no one wants Fran's old job now. It comes with too much baggage, most it having not seen the light of day. But George W. just appointed Fran to his new Intelligence Oversight Board. If she didn't have the intelligence to include the hospital with the highest number of patient deaths in a "robust" investigative report, that's not a good sign.