- The Washington Times - Friday, February 18, 2000

Whither Forbes?

Forget all those rumors that say Steve Forbes is about to endorse one of the two major remaining rivals for the Republican presidential nomination, perhaps before Saturday's South Carolina primary. "It will be awhile before he makes any decision. He will not do anything before South Carolina," said Mr. Forbes' campaign manager, Bill Dal Col.
Notably, Mr. Dal Col said that rumors that he's leaning toward Arizona Sen. John McCain are not true. "He's not leaning one way or the other right now," he said.
But Mr. Dal Col told The Washington Times Thursday that "both candidates have had third parties reaching out to Steve through me or directly. It's been all through third parties."

Hillary and Al

First lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and Vice President Al Gore will campaign together in New York for the first time this year as they appeal Sunday to minority voters who could be crucial to them both.
The two will appear at a church service Sunday morning that is a highlight of the annual weekend gathering in Albany of the Legislature's black and Hispanic caucus. Both Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Gore are expected to speak at the service, aides said.
The fact that the presidential candidate and Senate candidate haven't yet campaigned together in New York has raised some eyebrows, the Associated Press reports.
Clinton campaign spokesman Howard Wolfson said Thursday there was no intentional distancing of the two candidates. Aides to Mr. Gore said the same thing.
Asked recently why they hadn't been campaigning together, Mr. Gore told one television interviewer, "It's a matter of scheduling. Not just me, but also her."

Bauer's decision

Many veteran pro-life conservatives say they are mystified by Gary Bauer's decision to endorse Arizona Sen. John McCain.
Mr. Bauer, a staunch social conservative, made abortion his No. 1 issue in his ill-fated presidential campaign. But Mr. McCain never mentions the issue in his speeches and has flip-flopped on it in several interviews.
The National Right To Life Committee (NRLC), the largest anti-abortion organization in the country, put out a broadside Thursday raising questions about Mr. McCain's commitment to the pro-life cause and dismissing Mr. Bauer's influence among pro-lifers as insignificant.
"Bauer's own candidacy failed to attract many pro-life voters, and Bauer's endorsement will do little to rehabilitate McCain, who in the debate advocated weakening the Republican party's pro-life plank and who refused to repudiate his campaign chairman's characterization of Christian conservatives as 'bigots,' " the NRLC said.
Why would Bauer embrace Mr. McCain? Many conservatives say it was solely to get back into the political arena. "I think he's looking to make himself a player in the race," said Bill Dal Col, Steve Forbes' campaign manager.

McCain leads Gore

Arizona Sen. John McCain fares better than Texas Gov. George W. Bush against Vice President Al Gore, the leading Democratic presidential contender, says a national poll out Thursday that challenges the Bush campaign's claim that their man is the Republican most likely to win the White House in November.
Mr. McCain led Mr. Gore by 49 percent to 41 percent in the hypothetical matchup in the poll by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press. Mr. Bush and Mr. Gore were in a dead heat.
"McCain is the new, exciting candidate," said Andrew Kohut, director of the Pew Research Center. "The message of this poll is that McCain is taking off nationally more so among independents than Republicans."
The Arizona senator trails Mr. Bush nationally in polls of likely GOP primary voters by 20 points to 30 points, depending on the poll, but is closer to Mr. Bush now than he was before winning the New Hampshire primary.

Ties that bind

New York Times columnist William Safire Thursday decried what he called "a hatchet job" on presidential candidate Sen. John McCain of Arizona in World magazine.
"The morally disapproving author of this repugnant anti-McCain campaign document is Bob Jones IV, son of the present head of Bob Jones University. That is the educational institution prohibiting interracial dating that offered its facilities to George W. Bush to launch his political campaign in South Carolina and pointedly did not invite his opponent," Mr. Safire said.
"The Bob Jones connection is not the only tie that binds the Bush campaign to this attack on a fellow Republican in contravention of Ronald Reagan's 'Eleventh Commandment.' The editor of World magazine is Marvin Olasky, a professor of journalism at the University of Texas in Austin. He is the revered intellectual guru of Governor Bush and an author of 'compassionate conservatism.' "
Mr. Olasky responded in an op-ed piece due to run in Friday's Austin American-Statesman: "To my knowledge, everything in our Feb. 19 McCain cover story is accurate."
Mr. Olasky said he has recused himself from all presidential coverage in the magazine and did not read the McCain piece prior to its publication. As for its author, "Bob Jones IV is a super-smart 33-year-old with a master's degree in history from Notre Dame, which is not exactly where the fundamentalists of stereotype go. He has a mind of his own; for example, in the April 25, 1998, World he stressed the importance of racial reconciliation."

Ties that bind II

People for the American Way (PFAW) Thursday called on Arizona Sen. John McCain to cut his ties with Richard Quinn, editor of Southern Partisan magazine.
Mr. Quinn is a top adviser to Mr. McCain's presidential campaign in South Carolina.
The group said Mr. Quinn and his magazine had been "insulting and disrespectful of African-Americans' struggle for equality."
Southern Partisan once marketed a T-shirt bearing a photo of Abraham Lincoln and the motto, "Sic semper tyrannis."
In a letter delivered to Mr. McCain's Senate office and campaign headquarters, PFAW President Ralph G. Neas said, "While you are to be commended for your criticism of George W. Bush's appearance at Bob Jones University, you would do well to be sure that your own house is in order."

Nader to run again

Ralph Nader says he will announce his campaign for the Green Party's presidential nomination in Washington on Monday Presidents Day.
This will be the third campaign for the White House by the 65-year-old self-described consumer advocate. He ran as a write-in presidential candidate in 1992, and as the 1996 nominee of the Green Party, a small party in the United States most prominent in California, where it has elected more than a dozen local officials.
Mr. Nader won 684,902 votes in the 1996 presidential election and 2 percent of the vote in California.

Nina's 'endorsement'

"Remember Nina Burleigh? The former Time magazine White House correspondent who in the midst of Monicagate said of Bill Clinton she'd 'be happy to give him [oral sex] just for keeping abortion legal'?" the Wall Street Journal asks.
"Even though you don't get more pro-choice than Hillary, Ms. Burleigh says she'll be pulling the lever for Hillary for senator in November only 'to make sure Trent Lott doesn't get another foot soldier for his holy war.' " the newspaper observed in an editorial.
"The first lady's campaign, she writes in the New York Observer, is a litany of unpleasant reminders of what the Hillary story means for women: 'her disastrously retro marital history, her vaunted "firsts," her portrayal of the feminazi of feminazis, her ongoing transformation and fundamental insecurity and her feeble lashing at right-wing conspirators.' That's an endorsement?"

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