Draper: Laura Bush Considers Rove ‘A Necessary Evil,’ ‘Self-Aggrandizing’

In a new book on the Bush presidency, entitled “Dead Certain,” former Texas Monthly senior editor Robert Draper reveals that First Lady Laura Bush refers to her husband’s longtime political adviser, Karl Rove, as “Pigpen,” the perpetually dirty character from Charles Schulz’ “Peanuts” comic strip.

On the Today Show this morning, host Meredith Veira asked Draper about the First Lady’s feelings towards Rove. “Well, I think she recognizes that Karl Rove was a necessary evil,” said Draper. He also said she felt Rove often took more credit than he deserves:

She also felt that Rove was a bit self-aggrandizing, and she would say at times, “let’s see what boy genius has to say about this.” She didn’t like the fact that, in her view, Rove would sometimes be stealing credit for administration policy that, in fact, emanated from her husband.

Watch it:



Draper’s book is not the first report of Laura Bush’s displeasure with Rove. In a 2004 interview with the New York Times, Mrs. Bush said “she gets angry” when Rove is given undue credit:

Laura Bush is so devoted [to her husband] that she gets angry when Karl Rove, Mr. Bush’s chief political adviser, is called ‘Bush’s brain’ or is credited with being the real power in the West Wing. “His input is valued just about, you know, equally with a whole lot of other people and — or maybe less, I should say, than some of the other people over there,” Mrs. Bush said in an interview in February.

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