- The Washington Times - Wednesday, August 16, 2000

The message was simple at last night's People for the American Way gala at the Beverly Hilton Hotel: This election is all about who sits on the Supreme Court.
PFAW President Ralph G. Neas, unsuccessful Democratic challenger in Montgomery County, Md., for Rep. Connie Morella's seat, told several hundred partygoers that the Bush-Gore contest is about three things: the Supreme Court, the Supreme Court and the Supreme Court.
Not since the presidency of James Monroe has the court gone so long without a vacancy, so the next president will have his hands full, he explained.
With a large black-and-white poster against one wall demonizing the judicial rulings of Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas, it was obvious the kind of appointees the crowd doesn't want the next president to make.
Mr. Neas was accorded a few minutes of near-quiet for his comments. Less fortunate were co-hosts Julie Burton, executive director of Voters for Choice (whose handout of the evening was free condoms emblazoned with the group's name), and Michael Kieschnick, president of Working Assets, both drowned out by the social proceedings.
Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts, Sen. Robert G. Torricelli of New Jersey, a late arrival, and Kweisi Mfume, head of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, were among the happy Democrats on hand.


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