The Corner has an extended transcript of former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill’s appearance on the Today show. I find this rather telling:

COURIC: Very quickly, will you vote for President Bush in November?

O’NEILL: Probably. I don’t see anybody that strikes me as better prepared and more capable.

On the one hand, it’s not surprising that a guy Bush appointed to a major cabinet office would tend to vote Republican even if he disagrees with many Administration policies. But given that he has written a book saying that the Bush team is woefully inept, saying that the Democratic contenders are even less qualified to hold the office is a harsh judgment indeed.

(Hat tip: Dodd Harris)

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2004
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. djspicerack says:

    But hey, Bush is “out of it” and “disengaged” in the Cabinet meetings. Would I vote for him? Sure!

    That makes lots of sense!

  2. James Joyner says:

    As I say, it either means that O’Neill was being hyperbolic about Bush or he really thinks Dean and Co. are dolts!

  3. Kevin Drum says:

    I don’t know about that. For a lifelong Republican politico and former cabinet officer to say only “probably” is actually pretty damning….

  4. James Joyner says:

    Kevin: True enough. On the other hand, he’s saying that of a president about whom he obviously feels some personal bitterness–he was fired, after all. One would think he’d be endorsing Clark, Lieberman, or somebody as being a saner choice. That he can’t bring himself to do that says something. I’m not sure what–but something.

  5. John Lemon says:

    What did Katy Couric’s face look like after he said this? I didn’t see it. I could only imagine how distorted it was.

  6. Barbar says:

    O’Neill has not written a book.

  7. Liz Tudor says:

    This signals the end of Paul O’Neill’s integrity. Who will trust him after this? He signed on to an administration and then began acting like HE was president. What a clueless buffoon.

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