- The Washington Times - Friday, June 23, 2000

'He's a jerk'

Vice President Al Gore isn't exactly a hit with one teen-age fan of Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura.
During a campaign appearance yesterday at a Minnetonka, Minn., junior high school with Mr. Ventura former pro wrestler turned independent politician Mr. Gore took time out to chat with 17-year-old Blake Barry.
According to Deborah Zabarenko of Reuters, young Blake, "who sported a red-orange Mohawk hairdo and a lip ring … was generally down on politicians."
But Mr. Ventura, unlike other politicians, is "a nice guy," Blake said.
Not Mr. Gore.
"I think he's a jerk," Blake said, after talking to the vice president. "I don't believe a word he says."

'People would laugh'

"MSNBC's conservative news analyst Laura Ingraham could turn out to be Hillary Clinton's worst nightmare," Richard Johnson writes in his New York Post "Page Six" column.
Miss Ingraham is promoting her new book, "The Hillary Trap: Looking for Power in All the Wrong Places," with a tour of New York, where Mrs. Clinton is seeking a Senate seat.
"I'm doing my own listening tour, and hearing a lot of anti-Hillary sentiment," said Miss Ingraham after a stop in Buffalo. "Imagine if she was not married to Bill, just some other guy, and she had no job and tried to run for Senate. People would laugh at her."
As to Mrs. Clinton's platform, Miss Ingraham said, "It's like, 'Elect me, I'm a victim.' Well, three cheers for feminism."

'Rednecks' vs. 'elitists'

President Clinton considers himself a "blue-collar redneck," while his critics are "elitists."
At least that's the impression Mr. Clinton gave Wednesday, when he spoke to the Irish-American Democrats.
The president was telling the group about negotiations for a peace agreement in Northern Ireland, according to Matt Kelley of the Associated Press.
Mr. Clinton told the crowd of about 150, each of whom paid $1,000 to attend the fund-raiser: "None of the elitists thought we ought to do it, but all us blue-collar rednecks thought it was a good idea."

Meet the elite

President Clinton raised $200,000 for his wife's New York Senate campaign Wednesday night during a private reception for wealthy donors at a Georgetown mansion.
Mr. Clinton told two dozen persons who had paid $10,000 or more each to attend that Hillary Rodham Clinton would make a good senator because she understands the problems faced by working parents.
"I think the whole cluster of family issues will be very big in the next decade," Mr. Clinton told the group at the home of two top Democratic donors. "She spent 30 years working on this stuff."
The Associated Press reports the event was hosted by Elizabeth Frawley Bagley a former ambassador to Portugal appointed by Mr. Clinton and her husband, R.J. Reynolds tobacco heir Smith Bagley.
Earlier this year, agents of the Cuban government brought 6-year-old refugee Elian Gonzalez to the Bagleys' posh home.

No masks in Philly

The Philadelphia City Council, in an effort to prevent violence at the Republican National Convention, yesterday adopted an anti-mask ordinance modeled on a Georgia law aimed at combating the Ku Klux Klan.
Opponents of the bill quoted the Declaration of Independence during a 40-minute debate before the council voted 11-5 to make it illegal for anyone to wear a mask with the intent of threatening or intimidating another person, reports David Morgan of Reuters.
Organizers of a massive one-day protest rally slated for the eve of the July 31-Aug. 3 convention believe the ordinance will give police an easier time rounding up law-abiding demonstrators for the purpose of crowd control. They have vowed to wear masks throughout the event.
The new ordinance, which must be signed by Mayor John Street, was crafted with help from the Anti-Defamation League.

Mayor's son jailed

The son of former Nashua, N.H., Mayor Donald Davidson was sentenced to five days in jail Monday after confessing to sending anti-Semitic e-mail to a critic of his father.
Last year, Daniel Davidson e-mailed Fred Teebom: "You should have died in the gas chambers… . Die well jewboy."
Assistant County Attorney Kathleen Brown said its was important that a "message should be sent to the community that this type of behavior … will not be tolerated."
Mr. Davidson, 30, pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor harassment charge and sentenced to one year in jail with all but five days suspended, the Nashua Telegraph reported.

Bill and Bill

President Clinton said Thursday he has confidence in Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, under fire for his department's mishandling of nuclear secrets and soaring oil prices.
Mr. Richardson "came in there and faced a whole host of problems, and I think that in every case, he's dealt with them in a forthright and aggressive manner," Mr. Clinton told reporters from Reuters and other news organizations.
"They're getting to the bottom of [missing nuclear data at Los Alamos National Laboratory] I think pretty quickly, with the help of the good work by the FBI and others," he said.
The president admitted the Los Alamos case is "a very serious matter, so the administration should expect to be asked hard questions about it. And we should figure out not only what happened in this case, but how to keep such things from happening in the future."

Memo to Bill and Bill

Wednesday night's Top Ten list on the CBS "Late Show" with David Letterman was "Top Ten Questions on the Los Alamos Security Application."
No. 10: "Do you have any previous experience sitting around doing nothing?"
No. 5: "Tell us about your work with the group 'Overthrow America.' "
No. 4: "Which better describes you: bumbling or incompetent?"
No. 1: "You haven't seen an encrypted MIRV warhead schematic lying around, have you?"

'Congenital liar'

Now that independent counsel Robert W. Ray has released his findings on the first lady's involvement in the 1993 firings of White House travel office employees, William Safire wonders if he should still fear a punch in the nose from Hillary Rodham Clinton's husband.
The New York Times columnist Thursday recalled that in 1996, when he called Mrs. Clinton a "congenital liar," President Clinton "promptly made it known, through his press secretary, that were he not constrained by occupying the office of the president, he would punch me in the nose."
The White House has "angrily denied" that the firings were "personally instigated by Mrs. Clinton to make room for patronage to their Arkansas relatives and friends," Mr. Safire wrote in yesterday's column.
Now that Mr. Ray's Travelgate report is out, Mr. Safire asks: "Who cares about seven government workers? Why does this warrant years of investigation? … To cover up their desire to put cronies and a relative on the government payroll, the Clintons' White House induced an eager-to-please FBI to launch and to wrongfully publicize an investigation of innocent people."

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