I’m sure that Tom Ridge’s publisher realizes that their client generates as much excitement and interest as a 90-year-old nun at a singles bar, and as such Ridge was probably encouraged to throw in juicy tidbits such as this:
Among the headlines promoted by publisher Thomas Dunne Books: Ridge was never invited to sit in on National Security Council meetings; was “blindsided” by the FBI in morning Oval Office meetings because the agency withheld critical information from him; found his urgings to block Michael Brown from being named head of the emergency agency blamed for the Hurricane Katrina disaster ignored; and was pushed to raise the security alert on the eve of President Bush’s re-election, something he saw as politically motivated and worth resigning over.
Is it possible it played out this way? Sure, but as far as the election goes, would it have mattered either way? Kerry and Edwards lost handily, and I seriously doubt many people would have been pro-Kerry liberals the day before the election until a color-coded threat-o-meter changed hue. “Gee, I’d like a big tax increase and I want the crippled to walk again, but Homeland Security just went from yellow to orange, so I’ve gotta go with Bush.”
According to the DHS chronology of changes to the threat level, it wasn’t changed on the eve of the election in 2004, so Ridge can now set himself up as a hero for not caving to political pressure that may or may not have existed.
By the way, on the eve of the release of Tom Ridge’s book, I’ve been pressured to raise the threat level to “Red”: