The reaction on the cable channels was muted. What to make of this? Fineman said it wasn't much. Matthews was not much impressed. Scarborough said he sounded like Lyndon Johnson (which means some conservatives were unnerved by Bush's references to racism and large-sounding social programs). I have to agree with Scarborough, he was handing out a lot of candy.
This morning, Josh Marshall makes two good points.
1. Bush is calling for more federal authority when none is needed.
2. He's handing the reconstruction to Karl Rove, which means this will be a $200 billion patronage program. Remember, Homeland Security mostly did away with Civil Service protections.
There will be some very large watermelons for this administration to divide among its friends.
Talking Points Memo
Updaate: Washington Post agrees with Marshall.
NY Times columnist points out that it's a desperate attempt to salvage Bush's political fortunes.