The twitter Tweet Tracker collection on the National Review's The Corner blog is rife with commentary on U.S. security failures. "Mutullab could get on a plane but joan rivers couldn't," tweets the Review's Kathryn Lopez. But the tweeting doesn't seem to be resulting in any of the changes conservative commentators have been calling for all day, which is for top officials to get sacked over security lapses leading to the thwarted Christmas Day bombing of Northwest Airlines Flight 253.
Obama's short speech on Tuesday outlined security lapses and a failure to "connect those dots that would have placed the suspect on the no-fly list." But the top question asked in the conservative media blogosphere and networks on Monday is who would be sent packing. Commentators on Fox & Friends discussed Obama's "tepid" response and had a "Five Things to Watch" list for the day, with the top question "Do heads roll?" But even they didn't think that would be likely. The fire-Napolitano drumbeat was sounding all day, but everyone must have headed to bed disappointed.
The National Review suggested that firing Janet Napolitano isn't going to do any good unless Obama can find a decent replacement for running Homeland Security, which is "a mess, it has been one since its inception, and is likely to be that way for a long time to come," writes Jim Geraghty. That viewpoint, alas, is echoed not only in the conservative media, but also liberal outlets—and has been for some time.
Geraghty suggests personality types like Rudy Giuliani in his early years as New York mayor, or D.C. public-schools chancellor Michelle Rhee, who both earned reputations as feather-rufflers with little patience for bureaucracy, as the kind of person needed to run Homeland Security.
"Should Napolitano go? Only if she gets replaced with a serious reformer, hell-bent on accountability and fearless about confrontation; otherwise, we're replacing one longtime party stalwart giving rote speeches with another." But by the end of his post Geraghty sounds defeated: "I suppose it's possible Obama could find a Giuliani or a Rhee for DHS, but I wouldn't count on it."