According to Krugman, the Bush administration is to be held accountable both for not being sufficiently alarmist with respect to intelligence estimates prior to 9/11 and then for being unduly alarmist with those same intelligence estimates after 9/11.
Think about the absurdity and hypocrisy of this for a moment: Krugman wants to vilify the Bush administration for not piecing together scraps of intelligence, speculation and theory to "predict and prevent" a one-in-a-million terrorist attack scenario and then turn around and vilify the administration when they take seriously intelligence reports - reports that the British government continues to stand by even to this very moment - that Hussein attempted to purchase material to make a nuclear bomb.
The ridiculousness of this part of Krugman's argument does, I think, put a nice highlight on why this issue may not damage President Bush the way the Democrats hope and may even backfire on them in a big way.
Rather than offer up a clear cut case that "BUSH LIED!", what the Niger/uranium story does indicate explicitly to voters in this country is that if there is even the slightest indication that terrorists or rogue regimes around the world are trying to get their hands on WMD's, President Bush is willing to act swiftly and forcefully to take them down and defend America. This stands in stark - and I mean STARK- contrast to Howard "Let's Send Troops to Liberia but Not Iraq" Dean and most of the rest of the Dem presidential hopefuls.