- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 6, 2002

All booked up

The lucrative parade of political memoirs, tell-alls and cautionary tales continues.

Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, South Dakota Democrat, received a $500,000 advance from Crown Publishers for penning a memoir of the 107th Congress, the New York Times reports. The book covers his political life after the 2000 Florida recount, the September 11 attacks and his personal experiences with an anthrax letter.

"It isn't what one would normally expect to see by way of a campaign book, which would ordinarily be either a full-blown autobiography or an issue book," said a Crown spokesman.

Mr. Daschle says he will donate his advance to charity. But there are perks: The 2003 publication date could include a high-profile publicity tour, a deft way to enhance a political campaign, as demonstrated by Bill Clinton and Ross Perot a decade ago.

Meanwhile, Al Gore recently skipped Democratic policy discussions in New York City in favor of a meeting with publisher Henry Holt. The former vice president is writing a book with wife Tipper on "the changing American family."

His former running mate, Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, Connecticut Democrat, and his wife, Hadassah, are writing their own memoir of the 2000 campaign.

Run, Al, run?

And speaking of Al Gore, should he run for president again or not? A Zogby poll released yesterday asked respondents if he "deserved the Democratic nod, or should it go to someone else?"

Overall, 47 percent of those polled said Mr. Gore was a deserving candidate; 36 percent thought someone else should step up to the plate; and 17 percent either didn't know or had someone else in mind.

In a regional breakdown, Mr. Gore had the most fans in the Midwest, where 51 percent gave him that precious nod, followed by 50 percent in the South, 45 percent out West and 40 percent in the East.

Run, Tom, run?

His four-year marriage to comedian Roseanne and some Hollywood shenanigans have long fed the tabloids. Now there is a new chapter for comic actor Tom Arnold: He has a taste for politics.

Mr. Arnold will reveal in an upcoming biography that he has "a new burning ambition to be governor of Iowa," the Des Moines Register said yesterday.

Mr. Arnold has moved on from life in the fast and argumentative lane with Roseanne. He is married to the daughter of a former California Assembly speaker, and both father and daughter are political consultants, so "the campaign trail can't be far away."

Ghosts of Whitewater

The U.S. Supreme Court yesterday barred former Arkansas Gov. Jim Guy Tucker from practicing law before the high court, a formality stemming from his 1996 conviction on Whitewater charges.

The former Clinton associate did not fight the Supreme Court disbarment. He lost his Arkansas law license last fall, according to the Associated Press.

A jury convicted Tucker of felony mail fraud and conspiracy to defraud the government after a trial with co-defendants James and Susan McDougal, the former partners in the Whitewater real estate deal with Bill Clinton and Hillary Rodham Clinton, now a New York Democratic senator.

Tucker, who served an 18-month sentence in home detention, lost a Supreme Court appeal of the convictions last fall.

Descending on a cloud

Fireworks and hair-pulling are predicted in the race between Sen. Robert G. Torricelli, New Jersey Democrat, and Republican newcomer Douglas Forrester, made piquant by last week's reprimand of Mr. Torricelli by the Senate ethics committee for accepting improper gifts.

"Torricelli may be a sleaze, but he's our sleaze," one lobbyist told the Trenton Times yesterday.

Meanwhile, the two candidates could end up spending $25 million on TV attack ads before it's over, the Newark Star Ledger reports.

"It's a big mistake for the Republicans to think that this is some sort of a silver bullet," former Clinton adviser and CNN "Crossfire" host Paul Begala said of the reprimand. "I saw them use these kinds of attacks for eight years with Clinton, and we beat them every time.

"New Jersey voters are tough. They are not delicate little hothouse flowers," he continued. "They are sophisticated and strong. And they are very concerned with the bottom line: What can you do for me? This ain't Utah, where they want their candidates to descend straight down on a cloud from heaven."

Jailhouse run

Former Rep. James A. Traficant Jr. faces another hurdle to his promised election run this November.

U.S. marshals moved him yesterday from an Ohio jail to a federal prison in Pennsylvania, the Associated Press reports. The Constitution states that House candidates must reside in the state where they seek office, and both his spokesman and state officials said they did not know whether the move would affect his eligibility to run for re-election Nov. 5.

"He's still moving forward as if he was running. But it's a gray area. Nobody's ever done this before," said spokesman Dean Caputo.

Getting the idea

Heavens: New Hampshire Gov. Jeanne Shaheen has a challenge.

"All her foes are ultra right-wing, knuckle-dragging extremists. Worse, they are religious," the Manchester Union-Leader noted yesterday in an editorial on embryonic stem-cell research.

"Flanked by people suffering from serious maladies, the U.S. Senate candidate proclaimed it wrong to oppose expansion of this line of medical research for 'ideological' reasons.

"Why shouldn't ideology be applied to such decisions, particularly in such a groundbreaking area as the creation of embryonic human lives for their stem cells? Has the pro-abortion Shaheen, a darling of the national abortion-rights movement, become so extreme on that issue that she sees no place for ideology on any life-and-death subjects?" the Union-Leader continued.

"Not exactly. Having condemned those who would make an 'ideological' decision on stem-cell research, Shaheen then added that she herself would oppose using these cells to create human clones. One would hope this stance is based on the governor's ideology, but perhaps it is merely because she has seen some polling numbers on the subject."

Letting the air out

One Tar heel's political run looks like it's taking cues from the basketball court.

"Elizabeth Dole looks like she is taking a strategy out of the North Carolina playbook in her run for the U.S. Senate. That gambit?" asks the Charlotte Observer.

"The Four Corners. [That basketball offense] was invented by former UNC Chapel Hill coach Dean Smith to sit on a lead. That's what Dole appears to be doing. The Salisbury native came into the race with a huge lead in the polls, and she seems content to sit and nurse it."

Major accomplishment

Former CNN White House correspondent Major Garrett started work as a general assignment reporter in the Washington bureau of the Fox News Channel yesterday.

Once deputy national editor at The Washington Times and later a U.S. News & World Report congressional correspondent, Mr. Garrett has reappeared on screen without a scratch on him, proof that civility makes fine armor.

"Dismissal of CNN reporter shakes bureau," the New York Times reported back in May, observing that Mr. Garrett's departure from the network was a personal shock that "roiled" his co-workers. According to the Times, the CNN brass told Mr. Garrett he had "no future," sending a "chill" through the bureau.

CNN issued a public statement praising Mr. Garrett's work, however. He in turn sent an e-mail to colleagues noting he was "happily turning his attentions to the great opportunities of broadcast journalism."

As for Fox, they offered a cordial title for their new find: Mr. Garrett was simply billed as "the new guy" during his first appearance on Fox yesterday afternoon.

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