Shortly after his 1964 monumental presidential loss, the late Sen. Barry Goldwater, icon of the Republican conservative movement, made a self-deprecating speech to the Gridiron Club that still stands as one of the funniest and most important of its kind. While the humor was sharp and caustic, the fact that he could deliver it without bitterness revealed a side of him that, had it been disclosed earlier, might have prevented the disintegration of his campaign and the near-demise of his party.
It is good to be home. It is even better to be home in one piece. There is, I will admit, a little bit of guilt associated with both of these feelings. I am sitting where so many men and women I’ve come to know over the past month would like to be. And I know some of them, regrettably, will not be as lucky in returning home in the same shape.
With his approval numbers headed for the dumpster, President Bush on Thursday attempted to break a political deadlock on overhauling Social Security with a proposal to limit the growth in future benefits for wealthier Americans and protect the benefits of low-income workers.