- The Washington Times - Friday, August 17, 2001

The kiss of death
"Virginia has a hot governor's race this year and Al Gore lives there now but there are no plans for him to stump for the Democratic candidate, because the former vice president could be the kiss of death," the New York Post's Deborah Orin writes.
"That's a good clue to Gore's handicaps as he launches his political comeback: Bubba's veep is seen by Southerners as the ultimate anti-Bubba — wimpy, anti-gun and way too liberal," Miss Orin said.
"He's welcome in moderate/liberal New Jersey and Iowa, where he has just agreed to speak at a big Sept. 29 dinner. But in 2000, Gore personified the Democratic Party's trouble in courting Southern white men.
"That's why he didn't carry a single state in the South. Even his home state of Tennessee went for George W. Bush, despite Gore's impressive black support.
"Gore faces the same problem in 2002, when many of the hottest Senate races will be in states like Montana, South Dakota, North Carolina, South Carolina and Arkansas, where Dubya beat him.
"For Democrats in those states, a Gore visit would be as politically problematic as one by Jane Fonda."

Jackson's love child
The mother of Jesse Jackson's illegitimate child says Mr. Jackson scuttled a possible third run for the White House last year partly because of the scandal.
In an interview that will be broadcast tonight on ABC's "20/20," former Rainbow/PUSH Coalition aide Karin Stanford tells Connie Chung that she did not tell Mr. Jackson she was pregnant at first because she knew he was considering a third presidential campaign.
"I did not want my pregnancy to interfere with the possibility of a campaign."
After Mr. Jackson found out about the baby, he dropped the idea, Miss Stanford said, according to a news release on the interview issued by the network yesterday.
"I think he was concerned that because reporters were calling and asking about who the father of my baby was, his concern was that they would focus more on his personal life rather than his campaign platform," said Miss Stanford, 39.
Mr. Jackson, 59, has seen his 2-year-old daughter only once in the past seven months, Miss Stanford told ABC.

Crushing a minority
"The U.S. Civil Rights Commission is engaging in unbelievable demagoguery," Pete du Pont writes at opinionjournal.com.
"The commission issued a draft report on 'Voting Irregularities in Florida During the 2000 Presidential Election' that has been shown by dissenting members to be intellectually sloppy and politically biased. And so the commission has tucked the dissenters' statement away as an appendix, available on its Web site, but on the flimsiest of legalistic grounds is refusing to publish it as a formal dissent," said Mr. du Pont, the former governor of Delaware.
"It is hard to think of any area in American civic affairs where the publication of dissenting viewpoints as a part of a decision is not considered basic fairness — the U.S. Supreme Court, congressional debates, federal commissions. It's astonishing that the Civil Rights Commission, of all institutions, should be the one to suppress a minority viewpoint.
"And it raises the question: What is in the dissent that could be so damaging that it must be suppressed? It turns out the commission's report is a divisive political document; it draws inferences that are not backed up by data and ignores facts that are counter to its desired conclusion. The report seems designed to further the commission Democrats' political agenda of encouraging the belief that the 2000 presidential election was illegitimate because black voters were disfranchised in Florida. Any other point of view must be suppressed."

Kennedy's health
Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, Massachusetts Democrat, denies that he is seriously ill with cirrhosis of the liver, although the National Enquirer plans to report otherwise in its next issue, gossip columnist Matt Drudge wrote yesterday at his Web site (www.drudgereport.com ).
The planned headline for the next edition of the Enquirer is "Ted Kennedy Dying," Mr. Drudge said, citing "publishing sources."
"There's absolutely no truth to it at all," Kennedy aide Jim Manly told Mr. Drudge.
The supermarket tabloid plans to report: "The senator has been fighting to stave off the disease, but his condition is far more advanced and serious than he's told family and friends."
The Enquirer intends to go into great detail in describing Mr. Kennedy's supposed health woes, Mr. Drudge said, including problems with pills, booze, and a round of pneumonia.

Swift response
Massachusetts acting Gov. Jane M. Swift, who was criticized by her homosexual stepson for opposing same-sex "marriage," says she is extending some domestic partnership benefits to homosexual state workers.
Mrs. Swift, a Republican, said Wednesday that her administration had already extended benefits for same-sex couples to government social workers, and other workers would get the benefits when their contracts are negotiated over the next two years.
The move was not made in response to criticism that was published in the Boston Globe on Wednesday, Mrs. Swift said. In an interview with the newspaper, Mrs. Swift's stepson, Brian Hunt, accused her of hypocrisy.
"She wants to get the votes of the gay community, but when it comes down to it, she doesn't want to lose other votes over it," Mr. Hunt said. "It's hypocritical to me."
Mrs. Swift said her support for domestic partnership benefits is "a position that I think had been well-established, and a position that I'm comfortable with." But she reiterated her opposition to homosexual "marriage."
"In my mind, the sanctity of marriage requires that it be confined to marriage between a man and a woman," she said.
Domestic partner benefits to be extended to the state's 70,000 employees include leave to care for an ill partner, bereavement leave if a partner dies and paid time off for court appearances or counseling for victims of domestic violence.
The benefits do not include health insurance, which would require an appropriation from the state Legislature.

Not a penny
Abe Hirschfeld, a New York real estate tycoon who once offered Paula Jones $1 million to drop her sexual harassment case against Bill Clinton, scoffs at the idea he should make good on his promise.
"Paula Jones does not deserve a penny," says Hirschfeld, who is serving a prison sentence for trying to hire someone to kill a business partner. "She knew full well of Clinton's reputation when she entered his hotel room."
Mrs. Jones filed a lawsuit Wednesday in U.S. District Court to force Hirschfeld to hand over the money.
"When Paula refused to settle with Clinton, I offered a million dollars to keep the country from going into the depression which I predicted at that time," Hirschfeld said in a prepared statement. "But Paula didn't want my money anyway, so I ended up donating it to the government."
The lawsuit claims Hirschfeld's public promise of $1 million "was still on the table" even as Mrs. Jones settled with Mr. Clinton in November 1998.

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