President Bush has repeatedly proclaimed that he calls the shots and has the final word on decisions regarding the war in Iraq.
On April 18, 2006, Bush rejected calls for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to step down, saying, “I’m the decider, and I decide what is best.” Watch it:
But even “the decider” apparently recognizes the American public is not interested in what he has to say.
On Wednesday, Bush hosted a group of columnists at the White House for a 90-minute interview session. Roll Call editor Mort Kondracke, who attended the meeting, said that Bush now “may be a lame duck” and appears to know that “his credibility is low.” At the meeting, Bush acknowledged:
People listen to Petraeus, not to me.
But Petraeus’ close ties to Bush have damaged his own credibility. A recent CBS poll found that, after Petraeus’ testimony, the percentage of Americans who believe escalation is working fell from 35 to 31.