- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 30, 2000

Bye Bill

"She lives in Chappaqua, N.Y., and has a daughter, Chelsea."

Biography of Sen.-elect Hillary Rodham Clinton, New York Democrat, published alongside other congressional biographies in the National Journal.

Crying in defeat

Democratic National Committee Chairman Edward G. Rendell, outspoken former mayor of Philadelphia, has just written an essay on "Why I Am a Democrat."

Which, we should stress, contains nothing as remotely controversial as Mr. Rendell's comments during the 2000 presidential campaign, when he declared: "I don't think anyone can calculate the effect of having a Jew on the ticket. If Joe Lieberman were Episcopalian, it would be a slam dunk."

A day earlier, the DNC chairman commented: "There is no question Joe would be a dynamite choice … but any time you break new ground, you have to think about that."

And Mr. Rendell is Jewish.

Now, in his essay, Mr. Rendell reflects on yet another loss suffered by Democrats during a presidential election, one that he perceived through his father, a "true blue" Democrat and "my first political hero."

"My dad died when I was very young," the chairman writes, "but I will forever remember one night in November 1952. We went down the street to pick up some groceries at the corner drug store and the radio was on behind the counter. As we approached it, the announcer relayed to us the tragic news my dad's beloved Adlai Stevenson had gone down in defeat to Dwight David Eisenhower. It was the only time in my life that I can remember my dad crying."


Announcing yesterday that on Dec. 8 President Clinton will finally pay a visit to Nebraska the only state he hasn't stepped foot into since becoming president eight years ago the White House sought to provide reporters with some background.

"For those of you who don't know," White House spokesman Jake Siewert lectured, "the following items, according to Nebraskans, were developed there: the TV dinner in 1953; Kool-Aid in 1927. Who knew? The Reuben sandwich which seems unlikely, but apparently true. Cliff Notes, which I've used from time to time. The ATM machine as well. And also 911."


Word is circulating around the links that a proposed revision to the rules of golf is being sought in South Florida that would replace the traditional call of "Fore."

When a player hits an errant shot, he would be allowed to call "Gore" while the ball is still in flight. He could then replace the ball in the same spot and hit it again. The player could do this until he is satisfied the ball is going to drop where he intended to hit it in the first place.

A recent test of this new rule was recently played out in an exclusive club in Palm Beach County, Fla., and the first hole took only 21 days to complete.

Henry's House

Congress bids Godspeed to former Rep. Henry B. Gonzalez, who passed away Tuesday in his native Texas, where he had recently retired after spending 37 years on Capitol Hill.

It never ceased to amaze some of his colleagues when the Texas Democrat and chairman of the powerful House Banking Committee introduced measures to impeach presidents Reagan and Bush, yet Bill Clinton despite all his efforts could do no wrong.

Of this column's many occasions covering the chairman, we'll never forget one procedural debate Mr. Gonzalez carried on with then-freshman Rep. Spencer Bachus, Alabama Republican, moments before the committee interrogated then-White House Counsel Bernard Nussbaum, one of Mr. Clinton's staunchest defenders.

Mr. Bachus was concerned because if each of the 51 committee members wanted to ask the witness a question and receive an answer, then each lawmaker would have only 30 seconds to do so under Mr. Gonzalez's imposed time constraints.

Mr. Gonzalez and Mr. Bachus argued the matter at length, their voices rising above the gallery. Finally, it was Rep. Barney Frank, Massachusetts Democrat, calling for order:

"The [Republican] minority has a right to have a day of hearings and to call witnesses. I assume they could call witnesses one at a time. They might like some witnesses drawn and quartered, they could have them in four different pieces, they could have them any way they want. They could have one guy sitting in the middle and everybody else revolving around them, or they could have everybody even. They could ask them questions, they could ask them whatever they want."

To which a dumfounded Mr. Gonzalez responded: "The gentleman is correct … so let's proceed. The chair recognizes the witness, Mr. Nussbaum."

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