DeLay’s anger at Card, according to House leadership sources, has been growing exponentially over the months as he has watched Card play footsie with House and Senate Democrats. “Card has been wooing people like Tom Daschle and Dick Gephardt, trying to draw them over to our side on budget issues and Homeland Security,” says a leadership aide. “But it isn’t working. At least on our side of the Hill, we can do just about anything we want because we have the majority. Why waste time with bipartisanship if we can just get it done?”
House conservatives have been feeling slighted of late, in part because they can get the Homeland and budget legislation passed with comparative ease. “We move the Bush agenda forward and the White House spends all its time on the Senate. No pat on the back, no thank you,” says a Republican congressman, sounding like a hurt schoolgirl.
“It’s true, we’ve had to focus more energy and more time on the Senate and Democrats, because we need them on board to get stuff done legislatively,” says a White House staffer who does liaison work on Capitol Hill. “If we don’t have some Democrats on board in the Senate, we don’t have any movement with bills.”
Republicans feel that Card could do more to direct some love their way, instead of wasting so much time with Democrats. What apparently set off DeLay most recently was a comment by Card that Gephardt was doing what he could with his caucus for the administration on the Homeland Security front. “That’s B.S.,” says the leadership staffer. “Gephardt isn’t doing squat. If that’s the spin Card is giving the President, then he’s giving him bad intelligence.”
DeLay, House Republican leadership staffers say, has made it clear to Rove that Card is not a man he feels comfortable dealing with and would prefer someone more conservative in the chief of staff position. One name that has popped up: current director of the Office of Management and Budget Mitch Daniels.
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H/T to National Review Online