I think Morton Kondracke is right:
Democrats, liberal historians and even a majority of U.S. voters already consider George W. Bush a “failed” or “poor” president — in fact, perhaps, “the worst president in American history.”
Only a thin line of loyal Republicans, led by Bush's departing top political aide, Karl Rove, thinks Bush will be vindicated in the end, both historically and politically.
Which is it? I think the jury is still out — and ought to be — because Bush's place in history will depend on the outcome of the Iraq War, Bush's signature undertaking.
Kondracke mentions two other presidents who were reviled because of the wars on their watch who have been rehabilitated by history's judgment -- Lincoln and Truman. The war in Iraq has defined Bush's presidency, and that is really the only thing history will remember him for. And we do not know how that will turn out yet, whether making it a part of the overall war on terror was a strategically brilliant move or a spectacular blunder. We can't start figuring that out yet for many reasons -- one of them being that much will depend on who the next president is and what choices he or she makes.
If Bush does turn out to be the "worst president in history," it will mean that the war in Iraq was a disaster of epic proportions. Do some people really hope for that? Those caught up in the transitory delights of Bush Derangement Syndrome should really think a little further ahead.