Turn out the lights, the Wolfowitz party is over

Looks like embattled World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz is the latest casualty of the George W. Bush "Brownie you're doing a heck of a job" syndrome.

After weeks of "unqualified" support, White House officials are now backing away from Wolfie faster than a champion horse at The Kentucky Derby.

Clearly, Wolfowitz's days are numbered.

Writes Peter S. Goodman of The Washington Post:

The Bush administration softened its support for World Bank President Paul D. Wolfowitz yesterday, signaling a willingness to replace him if the bank's executive board resolves an ethics controversy without firing him.

"All options are on the table," said White House spokesman Tony Snow, addressing reporters at a morning briefing. "Members of the board, Mr. Wolfowitz, need to sit down and figure out what is in fact going to be best for this bank. . . ."

The shift of tone at the White House, which nominated Wolfowitz for the post two years ago, is a blow to his struggle to save his job. It came a day after a bank investigating committee found that Wolfowitz broke ethics rules and damaged the integrity of the institution by engineering a large raise for his girlfriend, Shaha Riza, while keeping the bank's top legal adviser out of the loop.

Senior Bush administration officials emphasized that the White House has not abandoned Wolfowitz and does not believe he should be fired. But the White House has concluded, through conversations with counterparts in foreign capitals and from the committee report, that Wolfowitz can no longer effectively head the institution, the officials said, speaking on the condition they not be named because they lacked authorization to discuss the matter publicly.

"We've considered that this is an issue for people at the bank and our colleagues at other governments," a senior White House official said. "We'll engage in a discussion about the future leadership of the bank."


  1. Steve Horn

    Ok – so his days are numbered – but will this be another case of (as Dylan put it)

    “Steal a little and they throw you in jail
    steal a lot and they make you king” ????

    Why is it that time and again, the big fish end up on a “catch and release” plan? Are not law and ethics wedded so that anyone who engages in illegal activites can be prosecuted? Or is prosecution and jail time reserved for poor people forced to deal drugs to survive in our “booming” economy?



  2. Sandy Price

    The Republicans blame the Democrats for all their corruption and they will be armed and ready for Democrats to trip over everything. The 104th congress waited for Clinton to get caught doing something and they impeached him. It will happen to the Democrats unless they are very careful what they appoint in every category.

    I’m sick of these two parties fighting over trivia and ignoring the serious stuff happening in America. Nobody on either side has a solution to Iraq and how to bring home our National Guard to protect the States.

    Prayers are not going to put out the fires or stop the hurricanes and tornadoes. Men at the ready is what we all need. I worry about California with the earth quakes and forest fires. California has a strong Governor even if he is a Republican but the rest of us are at the mercy of a President who only prays.

    America has a terrible education system and the Governors are doing nothing to fix it and the people look to the White House. Oy!

    A third party could and should step in and take the white house and force those silly representatives to shape up and get acquainted with the Constitution.

  3. Steve Horn

    In order to allow honest, hard working people without loads of political baggage to even have a chance of getting elected you need to even the finacial playing field.

    However, those in power will not slit their own throats by enacting legislation to do so.

    Nor will they impose term limits that would result in their own unemployment.

    As for the courts – well – the big boys are appointed by politicians – think they’re going to take any action?

    So we end up with the same political hacks – talented at sounding sincere and genuine and totally unable to be so.

    As for Wolfie’s days being numbered – there’s no downside for him – he’ll either be removed or resign and then take up a lucrative position in some political “think tank” – or teach accounting at Liberty University …

  4. Dayahka

    Saying that Wolfie’s days are numbered says nothing. The issue is how many days? And does the man himself know he should leave? Whether or not he in fact leaves in a few days, as the article suggests, is something we’ll know in a few days. Same thing for Gonzales. But these guys could hang on until George’s also numbered days are over.

  5. Gonzo

    Government officials have, I believe, over the centuries used their position to help friends and loved ones get one up over the general public.

    In todays world, it has been pointed out that this is no longer acceptable behavior.

    So, Wolfy should go down for being a schmuck, and all the Generals in the Services, and General Officers in the Government and its Agencies should be put on notice that we, the public, are looking. And that when we find you, you will be gone too – hopfully including your pension.

    After all, why continue to reward failure at any level, or time. This time honored government tradition of screwing up then appologizing for it, and thinking that is all you need do, is over, over, over.