- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 7, 2000

Turkeys and bile

It's becoming obvious why Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush made a disparaging remark about Adam Clymer, political reporter for the New York Times.
Just last weekend, we learn, a New York Times forum was convened at the American Political Science Association convention in Washington, where Mr. Clymer's liberalism "was so clear that even liberals in the audience took note."
So writes Investor's Business Daily, noting that Mr. Clymer showed no restraint when referring to vulnerable Republican members of Congress as "the turkeys who got elected in the '94 Gingrich sweep."
The financial newspaper says other Times reporters piped in with their politics, but "it was Clymer who went the furthest. He showed not only bias, but a lack of taste."
On Rep. Philip M. Crane, the Illinois Republican who revealed he was seeking treatment for alcoholism, Mr. Clymer made the snide remark, "I've heard that Crane has finally dried out."
And, adds Investor's, "not only was alcoholism fair game for Clymer. So was gall-bladder surgery. 'Pat Buchanan just has his gall bladder removed, so Pat Buchanan without bile will be interesting,' Clymer smirked."
The audience's reaction?
"Certainly, I detected more criticism of Republicans and conservatives than of Democrats, at least on the part of Clymer," David Conradt, a political science professor at East Carolina University, told the newspaper. "And I'm a Democrat."
Even the New Republic's contributing editor, Mickey Kaus, is shocked at what the reporter for the "newspaper of record" reveals in public.
"Clymer maintains a veneer of objectivity by using sympathetic experts to make his point," Mr. Kaus opines in a recent column, "but like the [New York Times'] R.W. Apple, he seems so convinced that all civilized men would agree with him that he doesn't really bother to hide his viewpoint."

Southern hospitality

More proof that the New York Senate race between Hillary Rodham Clinton and Rep. Rick Lazio is national in scope lies where the latter Republican candidate attended private fund-raisers yesterday: Alabama, Louisiana and Texas.

Let there be light

There's an exciting House race in New York, too, where incumbent Rep. Michael P. Forbes, elected as a Republican in 1994 only to join the Democrats last summer, faces a tough challenge from Felix J. Grucci.
As in Fireworks by Grucci Inc.
For more than a century, a proud Grucci family has drawn ooohs and aaahs from young and old alike with their spectacular pyrotechnic displays. So it's understandable that Mr. Grucci gets hot under the collar when the congressman pokes fun at his family's profession.
"How dare Mike Forbes attack my family after 130 years of bringing joy to millions of people throughout the world by lighting the night sky with patriotism and pageantry?" asks the Republican.
Mr. Grucci already made a big splash in the nation's capital on New Year's Eve when counting down the seconds to 2000 he turned the 555-foot Washington Monument into a giant sparkler.
Says one impressed pundit: "Let's see Mike Forbes do that."

Buying power

How unimpressed does the Republican Party remain with the 1994 California Senate candidacy of Michael Huffington?
So unimpressed that they're now saying the Democratic campaign of New Jersey Senate candidate Jon Corzine "is beginning to eerily exhibit the arrogance" of Mr. Huffington's failed bid."
"Jon Corzine and Michael Huffington may belong to different political parties, but it's beginning to look like Corzine is following the Huffington playbook when it comes to hiding and obfuscating the true sources of his massive fortune," says Mark Miller, executive director of the Republican Leadership Council.
Mr. Huffington spent a record $30 million in his unsuccessful climb up Capitol Hill. Mr. Corzine, who says he earned $44 million in 1999 alone, is spending record sums of his fortune to reach Congress.

Hammering Harlem

His command appearance at the Democratic National Convention behind him, Jimmy Carter can now get back to work.
The nation's 39th president will make history next week when he picks up his hammer and helps restore an apartment building in Harlem. While he's in New York, Mr. Carter and his fellow volunteers of Habitat for Humanity International will dedicate their 100,000th completed home for the needy.
And where better to dedicate the group's 100,001st home later in the week but the former president's hometown of Plains, Ga.

• John McCaslin can be reached at 202/636-3284 or by e-mail at [email protected]

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