Harry Reid's Hate
Reid’s Relationship With Bush Enters Deep Freeze
Harry Reid, the Senate majority leader, has called President Bush a loser and a liar and has referred to him derisively as King George. Mr. Reid has also apologized — but only, he likes to point out, for the “loser” line.
Mostly, Mr. Reid, Democrat of Nevada, calls the president “this guy,” as in an interview last week, when he said, “I am mystified, dumbfounded about how difficult it is to work with this guy.”
In private conversations about Mr. Bush with friends and Senate colleagues, Mr. Reid has even used the word “hate,” though he clarifies that it is political not personal hatred that he feels.
Lately, as the acid relationship between the White House and Congress has deteriorated in battles over children’s health insurance, war spending and taxes, Mr. Reid’s public comments have taken a more ominous tone.
“I fear that the Bush years will be known as a rare, even dark time,” he said Friday on the Senate floor.
Washington, of course, can be a blustery, hot-tempered town. But not since 1919, when Henry Cabot Lodge called Woodrow Wilson “the most sinister figure that ever crossed the country’s path,” has a Senate majority leader appeared to harbor such deep and utter disdain, even loathing, for a president, as Mr. Reid does for Mr. Bush.
Mr. Bush and his aides insist that the president has no such venom. “I have got cordial relations with the leaders when I talk to them,” Mr. Bush said this month when asked about his relationship with Congress at a news conference.