President Bush really looked like Homer Simpson (or any other doofus paradigm you prefer) on this one. My faithful blog readers know that I nailed this situation.....I should only pick horses this well.
You have to give the Democrats credit, they lured Bush into a "compromise" that NONE of them would have actually voted for, and waited for his cretinous cronies to rail against it and "defeat" the bill before it went anywhere. It does not appear that the issues will actually be publicly debated. That seems like a constructive way to handle the most important social issue in our country.
What could Bush and the remaining upright-walking Rebublicans have done. Consider this scenario.....they all supported the bill despite stating certain reservations about it, but express a willingness to compromise further and work out any differences in the best interests of the country. They further trumpet their support of those things that would have forced the Democrats to actually talk about the bill (provisions regarding returning home, fines, waiting, elimination of certain family preferences, and English language encouragement). How many Democrats would have actually supported or voted for a bill with all those provisions? How different would this all look if the Democrats would have been the ones who "defeated" the bill, or at least contributed to the defeat.
The way this played out shows an appalling lack of political skill from the White House. It could also be that nobody in Congress, especially the Republicans, can gain anything from an association with the President. Bush is so far down that his best political ally is now Ted Kennedy.