Friday, November 9, 2001

Osama bin Sherman
Bill Clinton, in his speech to Georgetown University students on Wednesday, drew titters by drawing from his youth to illustrate a point he was making.
“One example from my childhood. In the Civil War, General [William Tecumseh] Sherman waged a brilliant military campaign that cut through the South and went to Atlanta.”
The former president looked confused as laughter spread, but continued.
“It was significant and very helpful in bringing the Civil War to a close in a way that, thank God, saved the Union. On the way, Sherman practiced a relatively mild form of terrorism. He didn’t kill civilians, but he burned all the farms and then he burned Atlanta, trying to break the spirit of the Confederacy.
“It had nothing whatever to do with winning the Civil War, but it was a story that was told for a hundred years later and prevented Americans from coming together as we might otherwise have done.”
Then Mr. Clinton arrived at his example.
“When I was a boy growing up in the segregated South, when we should have been thinking how we were going to integrate the schools and give people equal opportunity, people were making excuses for unconscionable behavior by talking about what Sherman had done a hundred years ago.”

Chelsea writes
“It’s hard to be abroad right now,” Chelsea Clinton, a student at England’s Oxford University, writes in the December/January issue of Talk magazine.
Writing about her life since the September 11 attacks, Miss Clinton says living in England is difficult “not only because of the inescapable sense of dislocation, but also because of the protectiveness, defensiveness and pride I feel for my country.”
“Every day at some point I encounter some sort of anti-American feeling” either from other students, from newspaper columnists or from anti-war protesters, the former first daughter writes, according to Reuters.
When terrorists struck New York’s World Trade Center, Miss Clinton writes, she was staying at a friend’s Greenwich Village apartment. Phone service was temporarily disrupted, and she ran toward downtown, trying to find a working telephone to call her mother, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, New York Democrat.
“The only things I was sure of was that I didn’t want to be crying or alone and that I wanted to talk to my mother,” Miss Clinton writes.

Panel OKs Walters
The Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday approved the nomination of John Walters as the new chief of the administration’s drug-control policies.
The panel, on a 14-5 vote, sent the nomination to the full Senate for anticipated confirmation, Reuters reports.
Chairman Patrick J. Leahy of Vermont was among the five Democrats who voted against Mr. Walters, who served in the drug-control office during the administration of Mr. Bush’s father. Four Democrats joined the panel’s nine Republicans in approving the nomination.
The full Senate was expected to quickly confirm Mr. Walters.

‘A senior moment’
Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle suffered what one observer called “a senior moment” yesterday when he could not find his eyeglasses as he began a news conference at the Capitol.
“Doug, could you get my glasses? I forgot my glasses,” Mr. Daschle asked spokesman Doug Hattaway, who promptly left the room to retrieve the senator’s spectacles.
Mr. Daschle intended to read aloud a letter from the National Governors Association that criticized Republicans’ economic-stimulus package, and he stalled for time. But when Mr. Hattaway returned to the ongoing press conference several minutes later, the aide still had not located the majority leader’s glasses.
“You couldn’t?” Mr. Daschle asked.
“A furious search is under way,” Mr. Hattaway reported to Mr. Daschle.
Then Mr. Daschle, with a look of chagrin, patted an inner pocket of his suit coat.
“Oh, you know what? They’re in my pocket. I found them,” Mr. Daschle said as reporters erupted with laughter.
Laughing at himself, Mr. Daschle told reporters, “This is bad. In front of everybody, I mean. This does happen once in a while, but it’s never happened in front of this all of you.”

Another Condit
Rep. Gary A. Condit’s son, who scuttled plans to run for the California state Assembly after his father became embroiled in scandal, has reversed course and decided to run for the state Senate.
Chad Condit filed a notice of intent to run Wednesday for the seat now held by Sen. Dick Monteith, a Republican who is seeking the elder Mr. Condit’s congressional seat, according to the Stanislaus County elections office.
Chad Condit, 34, has been collecting signatures for his father’s re-election bid even though Gary A. Condit, a Democrat, has not announced whether he will seek another term.
The younger Condit recently quit his $110,000-a-year job in Gov. Gray Davis’ office after Mr. Davis said he was disappointed that Gary A. Condit had not been more forthcoming about his relationship with Chandra Levy, a 24-year-old former federal intern who disappeared in May.

Roukema to retire
Rep. Marge Roukema, New Jersey Republican and the longest-serving woman in Congress, said yesterday she will retire after her term ends next year.
“There is a time and a place for everything, and my husband and I agree that this is the time to conclude this portion of my service to New Jersey,” Mrs. Roukema said in a statement.
Mrs. Roukema, 72, was first elected to Congress in 1980. She said she made the decision not to run for a 12th term over the summer but delayed her announcement until the completion of the congressional-redistricting process, and because of the September 11 attacks.
Among the Republicans expected to vie for the seat are Assemblyman Scott Garrett and Bergen County Executive William Schuber, the Associated Press reports.

Panic in New York
Judith Hope, chairman of the New York State Democratic Party, was so stunned by Republican Michael Bloomberg’s victory in the New York City mayoral election Tuesday that she immediately called for one of the party’s two gubernatorial hopefuls to drop out of next year’s race.
She didn’t say which one. Former federal Housing Secretary Andrew M. Cuomo, son of former Gov. Mario Cuomo, and state Comptroller Carl McCall are heading toward what could be a bitter fight for the right to take on Republican Gov. George E. Pataki in 2002. “We do not need a divisive primary for governor next year,” she told reporters. “One of them has to get out, it’s clear. Obviously, that’s what it’ll take.”
Mr. McCall is black, and Miss Hope may fear that the party’s most dependable voting bloc could be turned off if Mr. Cuomo should prove victorious, the New York Post reports.

Greens recognized
The Green Party won federal recognition as a national committee yesterday, which will allow it to collect larger campaign contributions.
The Federal Election Commission ruled 6-0 that the Green Party of the United States has established a national presence sufficient to gain the same legal status the Democratic and Republican parties have long held.
The national Green Party can now accept donations of up to $20,000 a year per donor and can pass money on to state and local party committees.
Prior to the ruling, the party could only accept contributions of up to $5,000 a year from each individual supporter, the Associated Press reports.
Other parties recognized by the FEC as national committees include the Reform, Libertarian, Natural Law and U.S. Taxpayers parties.

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