A REASONABLE QUESTION…. David Kurtz was probably just being a little snarky with this one, but I’ve been wondering about this same question myself.

If an underwear bomb means we’re not safe under Obama, does a shoe bomb mean Bush didn’t really keep us safe after 9/11?

The right-wing criticism of the Obama administration this week has been lacking in any coherence whatsoever, but the bottom line is fairly straightforward — they want people to blame the president for the attempted attack. Indeed, as far as Rep. Peter Hoekstra (R-Mich.) is concerned, the failed Abdulmutallab effort wasn’t an “attempted” terrorist attack, but rather, “it was a terrorist attack.”

But that’s what makes David’s question quite relevant. The White House’s Republican critics can’t say, exactly, why the president should be blamed for the attempted attack, but even if we put that aside, every criticism is undermined by the Reid shoe-bomb attempt.

The Abdulmutallab plot proves Obama is pursuing a poor national-security strategy? Then the Reid plot proved that Bush/Cheney must have pursued a poor national-security strategy.

The Abdulmutallab plot proves Obama has signaled “weakness” to America’s enemies? Then the Reid plot proved that Bush/Cheney must have signaled “weakness” to America’s enemies.

The Abdulmutallab plot proves Obama can’t keep Americans safe? Then the Reid plot proved that Bush/Cheney couldn’t keep Americans safe.

As for Hoekstra’s specific argument about Abdulmutallab’s failed effort representing an actual terrorist attack, this also necessarily means that the Republicans’ favorite talking point — other than 9/11, Bush/Cheney stopped terror attacks in the U.S. — isn’t true.

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.