By Jason Wojciechowski on August 4, 2003 at 6:02 AM
Powell and everyone around the reports deny them, and various notions for where the rumors came from are mentioned, including that Democrats might want to weaken the President's chances of re-election (since Powell is far more moderate than Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, et al.), or that Rumsfeld and other more right-wing administration members who have tusseled with Powell might want to force the issue of his resignation.
I'm of two minds on the issue, really. Powell has seemed an eminently reasonable man in office, in sharp contrast to Bush's cronies elsewhere, so in the fairly likely event of a Bush re-election, I'd like there to be some moderation left over in his government. On the other hand, if his resignation really did destabilize the Bush regime so that enough moderates would switch votes to a Democratic candidate, I'm all for him resigning.
The problem is obviously that you never know what the consequences would be if he resigned. What if he left and Bush won anyway? What kind of SecState would Bush appoint? If you want to push me one way or the other, then, and make me choose right now, I'm going to support Powell staying in office. If nothing else, he was educated in South Bronx public schools; I can use him as a role model for my kids.