- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 8, 1999

More race-baiting

Jim Nicholson, chairman of the Republican National Committee, has accused his Democratic counterpart of engaging in race-baiting for the second time in recent weeks.
In a letter yesterday to Democratic National Committee Chairman Joe Andrew, Mr. Nicholson said:
“On Sunday, when we appeared together on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal,’ a caller asked about the fund-raising scandals associated with the 1996 Democrat presidential campaign. Rather than take the high road admitting that what some people within the Democratic Party did was wrong, and promising that nothing like it would ever happen on your watch you misrepresented the facts, and launched yet another race-baiting attack on Republicans,” Mr. Nicholson said.
“Here is what you said as taken directly from a transcript: Clearly, there are Asian-Americans who felt they were singled out through the process [of investigating campaign-finance violations by Democrats], Asian-Americans who felt they were drug in front of Republican-controlled congressional committees who would have not have been drug in front of them but for the fact of their race or nationality.’
“I can’t tell you how personally offended I am, Joe. Of course, I know that you don’t believe the charge of anti-Asian-American racism that you are making against me and other Republicans. But that only makes it worse.”
A few weeks ago, Mr. Andrew publicly accused Republicans of trying to suppress the black vote in recent elections, but when challenged later was unable to come up with any examples.

Gore the pit bull

“The pit bull of the 2000 presidential primary season was supposed to be Republican Steve Forbes, who went after Bob Dole in 1996. Instead the role is being played by Vice President Al Gore, whose broadening offensive against Democrat Bill Bradley is turning the nomination race into a daily hail of cross fire,” USA Today reporter Jill Lawrence writes in a news analysis.
The reporter added: “Forbes’ limited criticism of front-runner George W. Bush seems mild next to the nearly nonstop arrows that Gore has been slinging at Bradley’s health insurance plan and other ideas since late October.”

3 liberals back Bradley

Bill Bradley was endorsed yesterday by three of the most liberal Democrats in Congress.
“We need to stop marking time on the problems,” California Rep. George Miller said, singling out the 44 million Americans without health insurance and neglect of America’s national parks.
At a news conference arranged by Mr. Bradley’s campaign, Mr. Miller joined fellow Californian Pete Stark and Rep. Jim McDermott of Washington to endorse the former senator from New Jersey.
“What we need is someone who understands that not everybody is making it in this society and who is willing to go out and say we have to fix it for them, too,” Mr. McDermott said.
Mr. Bradley has endorsements from just nine members of Congress, who are automatic delegates to the Democratic Party’s nominating convention next summer. More than 100 members of Congress but still less than half the number of Democrats in the House and Senate have endorsed the vice president, the Associated Press reports.
Mr. Stark pointed out that many of his colleagues, who face re-election themselves next year, have opted “not to alienate” Democrats in their districts by choosing sides in the presidential race.
Asked yesterday if Bradley supporters worried about less cooperation from the White House in the next session of Congress, Mr. Stark muttered, “It can’t get any worse.”

Rubin endorses Gore

Former Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin yesterday endorsed Vice President Al Gore’s bid to be president.
Mr. Rubin, who resigned from the Clinton-Gore administration in July, announced the endorsement during a meeting in New York with Mr. Gore and business leaders at New York University Law School.
In the campaign against Democratic rival Bill Bradley, Mr. Gore has argued that he is best suited to continue the economic prosperity the country has enjoyed under the administration. He hoped an endorsement by Mr. Rubin, a prominent economic figure, would underscore that message.
“He helped make the American economy the envy of the world and I intend to keep it that way,” Mr. Gore said in a statement.
Mr. Rubin, who served in the Clinton Cabinet since 1995, previously was co-chairman of Goldman, Sachs, & Co., an investment bank. He recently accepted a position as a member of the Office of the Chairman of Citigroup Inc.
In Washington, there have been whispers that Mr. Rubin may be in line to replace Alan Greenspan as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board if Mr. Gore wins the presidency.

Clinton’s motives

“We read that Bill Clinton lost in Seattle. Says who? True enough, the World Trade Organization talks broke down amid the sacking of local storefronts and the president’s futile pitch for attaching labor and environmental conditions to future trade agreements,” the Wall Street Journal says in an editorial. “Even some of his own advisers have been quoted as suggesting the president overreached himself.
“Yet to conclude that Mr. Clinton lost’ assumes that a new trade round is what he was trying to win. In fact, right from the start he hinted that trade was secondary to the real prize: a chance to shore up key parts of the Democratic base on behalf of Al Gore’s 2000 presidential bid… .”
The newspaper added: “It may seem cynical to suggest Mr. Clinton was seeking tactical partisan gain by wasting the time of the 130-plus ministers from the WTO’s member governments, not to mention American prestige and leadership.
“But this is a president who pardons Puerto Rican terrorists in the hope of aiding his wife’s senatorial campaign, and times retaliatory bombing of Afghanistan and Iraq at key moments of an impeachment trial over public and courtroom lies about his personal misbehavior.
“For the ministers leaving Seattle, there appears to be little doubt about why Mr. Clinton did what he did.”

Podhoretz reassigned

John Podhoretz, editorial page editor of the New York Post, has been reassigned and will expand his occasional column to twice weekly.
Mr. Podhoretz also plans to write a book about the 2000 political campaign, the Associated Press reports.
The move was announced by Post publisher Kenneth Chandler, who discussed the change with Mr. Podhoretz on Friday. Mr. Chandler said Mr. Podhoretz “was responsible for the editorial pages and the arts and leisure section seven days a week, and it seemed to me it was too much… .”
“I offered him the column and he agreed. It’s a good outcome for all sides.”
Mr. Podhoretz, 38, described his editorial-page post as “wonderful but a very rough two years.”
“I’m burned out,” he said.
A successor was not named.
Mr. Podhoretz also writes for the magazine the Weekly Standard and is a commentator for Fox News.

Just a senator

Sen. Richard J. Durbin, Illinois Democrat, was locked out of his hotel in downtown Seattle last week during riots surrounding the meeting of the World Trade Organization, the Chicago Tribune reports.
This is how the senator described it: “The policeman in full riot gear said, I’m not going to open this door.’ Then someone inside recognized me and said, Oh, he’s just a politician.’ So, they opened the door and let me in.”

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