Jewish World Review Oct. 23, 2000 / 24 Tishrei, 5761
It's the big government, stupid
AL GORE has proven that he is completely out of touch with
the American people, and undecided voters in particular.
Bush has tapped into their pulse because he happens to be
one of them: a real person.
Concerning Gore, I'm referring to his reaction to his own
performance in the third presidential debate. In an
interview with Fox News' Jim Angle he was giddy to the
point of being intoxicated as he playfully goaded Angle into
assessing his performance.
Even more telling than Gore's self-satisfied glow is the
revelation that he is trying to make sure that the third
debate is re-aired so that more people can watch it. I
wonder just exactly what it is that Gore is anxious for
more people to see.
Pollster Frank Luntz found that in terms of swaying
undecided voters Bush won the debate hands down.
Among members of his focus group in St. Louis, five Gore
supporters switched to Bush, and only two of Bush's
switched to Gore. Being in St. Louis that night, I talked
briefly with Luntz as he was explaining his results to a
small group of us in a hotel lobby. Above all, Luntz
impressed me that he is convinced that his group is truly
representative of undecided voters, due to his
organization's thorough vetting process in selecting people
who ultimately qualify for the group.
Happily for Bush supporters, Gore is apparently choosing
to listen to the wisdom of the Washington Post editorial
board, rather than swing voters. The Post pronounced
Gore's third debate effort as "just right."
Bush supporters think that Gore's performance was just
right, too -- "just right" to ensure Gore's defeat if he
continues in that mode. His impudent invasion of Bush's
space was "just right" to cause one female politician I was
talking with to be utterly repulsed by him. His petulant
insistence on making Dingle and Norwood household
names was "just right" to convince all non-policy wonks
(99.9 percent of the American people) that he is an
irredeemable nerd rather than a champion of the people.
That endless exchange would have only been better if
Gore had been wearing a superhero cape and coke bottle
glasses. Gore's boorish repetition of the 1 percent mantra
was "just right" to ensure that those who weren't turned
off by it the first ten times would be by the last five.
As out of touch as Gore is, however, I think he'll wake up
when he sees that the polls continue to contradict his
self-punditry. Then we'll truly see an acting-out of the
desperation that he'll be experiencing. It's not going to be
Among the tactics he'll probably use, is to escalate greatly
his efforts to scare the elderly (and others) about the
security of their Social Security (and Medicare). Bush
should be ready but not overreact to the ploy. So far, what
Bush is doing is working, and he should stay the course.
Bush's heartfelt denunciation of big government is
resonating infinitely more than Gore's demonization of big
business and the wealthy. How fitting that a man mostly
from the private sector is taking the career politician to
school about the virtues of entrepreneurship and the vices
of government largesse.
Bush should continue to expand this theme across the
board, as it can be applied to nearly every issue on the
table, including education, health care, the environment, the
budget, taxes, Social Security, Medicare, prescription drugs
and even foreign policy. Gore is manifestly for increased
government spending and control in all cases, which means
radically diminished personal liberties.
George Bush doesn't have to do much political strategizing
because his policies are consistent with his deeply held
principles. To him, this election is about the American
people -- whether we will continue to live and prosper in
freedom or continue to walk that "alluring" path toward
paternalism and totalitarianism.
When Gore again tries to scare the people, he will
probably find that he and Bill Clinton have cried wolf one
too many times. The public has now seen George W.
Bush, and they instinctively know that unlike his opponent
and his narcissistic mentor, he will not place his personal
political interests above their welfare.
Gore finished his closing remarks with the shamelessly
Reagan-affected statement, "You ain't seen nothing yet."
As I think he'll discover on Nov. 7, we've seen plenty,
commentator. Send your comments to him by clicking here.
10/18/00: Gore's down, so will he panic?
10/16/00: We're fresh out of new Al Gores
10/11/00: Gore: Fuzzy math = dirty politics
10/10/00:Gore: Renaissance man or unbalanced?
10/04/00: Where have you been, Albert Jr.?
10/02/00: Clintonís fragmented presidency
09/27/00: Liberal media doth protest too much
09/25/00: AlGore: Turning dreams into nightmares
09/20/00: Something fishy's going on
09/18/00: It's the liberalism, stupid
09/13/00: An open letter to open-minded cynics
09/11/00: The virtues of going negative
09/06/00: On a mission for marriage
09/04/00: Al Gore's 'Trivial Pursuits'
08/30/00: Lieberman and the paradox of liberal 'tolerance'
08/28/00: A campaign divided against itself
08/23/00: Al Gore's trickle-down populism
08/21/00: Prosperity without a clue
08/16/00: AlGore can run but he can't hide
08/14/00: When hate speech is OK
08/09/00: Bush: The pundits' enigma
08/07/00: GOP convention: Live or Memorex?
08/02/00: The first attack dog
07/31/00: The Cheney taint?
07/26/00: The anti-gun bogeyman
07/24/00: The raging culture war
07/19/00: Is Hillary 'Good for the Jews'?
07/17/00: How dare you, George?
07/12/00: Jacoby's raw deal
07/10/00: The perplexities of liberalism
07/05/00: Big Al and big oil
07/03/00: Partial-birth and total death
06/28/00: Some questions for you, Mr. Gore
06/26/00: Supreme Court assaults religious freedom
06/21/00: Waco: We are the jury
06/19/00: "Outrage" just doesn't quite cut it anymore!
06/14/00: Al Gore: Government's best friend
06/12/00: Say goodbye to medical privacy
06/07/00: Elian: Whose hands were tied?
06/05/00: Who, which, what is the real Al Gore?
06/01/00: Legacy-building idea for Clinton
05/30/00: Clinton: Above the law or not?
05/24/00: Not so fast, Hillary
05/22/00: Gore's risky, fear-mongering schemes
05/17/00: Can Bush risk pro-choice running mate?
05/15/00: Right to privacy, Clinton-style
05/10/00: Patrick Kennedy and his suit-happy fiddlers
05/08/00: Don't shoot Eddie Eagle
05/03/00: Congress caves to Clinton, again?
05/01/00: The resurrection of outrage
04/28/00: A picture of Bill Clinton's America
04/19/00: President Clinton: Teaching children responsibility
04/17/00: Elian, Marx and parental rights
04/12/00: Elian, freedom deserve a hearing
04/10/00:The fraying of America
04/05/00: Noonan: End Clintonism now
04/03/00: Bush: On going for the gold
03/27/00: Treaties, triggers, tobacco and tyrants
03/22/00: Media to Bush: Go left, young man
03/20/00: Stop the insanity
03/15/00: OK Al Gore: Let's go negative
03/13/00: Deifying of the center
03/08/00: The media, the establishment and the people
03/01/00: McCain's coalition-busting daggers in GOP's heart
02/28/00: Bush's silver lining in McMichigan
02/24/00: A conservative firewall, after all
02/22/00: Bush or four more of Clinton-Gore?
02/16/00: Substance trumps process
02/14/00: The campaign finance reform mirage
02/09/00: President McCain: End of the GOP as we know it?
02/07/00: From New Hampshire to South Carolina
02/02/00: SDI must fly
01/31/00: Veep gores Bradley
01/26/00: The issues gap
01/24/00: GOP: Exit, stage left
01/20/00: Nationalizing congressional elections
01/18/00: Do voters really prefer straight talk?
01/12/00: Media's McCain efforts may backfire
01/10/00: Conservative racism myth
01/05/00: Just one more year of Clintonian politics
12/27/99: Al Gore: Bullish on government
12/22/99: Bradley's full-court press
12/20/99: Bush: Rendering unto Caesar
12/15/99: Beltway media bias
12/13/99: White House ambulance chasing
12/08/99: Clinton's labor pains
12/06/99:The lust for power
12/01/99: In defense of liberty
11/29/99: Are Republicans obsolete?
11/24/99: Say you're sorry, Mr. President
11/22/99: Architects of victory
11/17/99: Trump's tax on freedom
11/15/99: GOP caves again
11/10/99: Triangulation and 'The Third Way'
11/08/99: Sticks and stones
11/03/99: Keyes vs. media lapdogs
11/01/99: Signs of the times
10/27/99: The false charge of isolationism
10/25/99: A matter of freedom
10/20/99: Clinton's mini-meltdown
10/18/99: Senate GOP shows statesmanship
10/13/99: Senate must reject nuclear treaty
10/11/99: Bush bites feeding hand
10/06/99: Jesse accidentally opens door for Pat
10/04/99: Clinton and his media enablers
09/29/99: Reagan: Big-tent conservatism
09/27/99: The Clinton/Gore taint?
09/22/99: Have gun (tragedy), will travel
09/20/99: Hillary's blunders and bloopers
09/15/99: GOP must remain conservative
09/13/99:Time for Bush to take charge, please
09/10/99: Bush's education plan: Dubya confounds again
09/07/99: Pat, savior or spoiler?
09/02/99: Character doesn't matter?
08/30/99: Should we judge?
08/25/99: Dubyah's drug question: Not a hill to die on
08/23/99: Should Dubyah start buying soap ... for all that mud?
08/16/99: 'W' stands for 'winner'
08/11/99: The truth about tax cuts
08/09/99: Hillary: Threading the needle
08/04/99: What would you do?
08/02/99: No appeasement for China
07/30/99: Hate Crimes Bill: Cynical Symbolism
07/26/99: Itís the 'moderates', stupid
07/21/99: JFK Jr. and Diana: the pain of privilege
07/19/99: Smith, Bush and the GOP
07/14/99: GOP must be a party of ideas
07/12/99: Gore's gender gap
07/08/99: Clintonís faustian bargain: our justice
07/06/99: The key to Bush's $36 million
06/30/99: Gore: a soda in every fountain
06/28/99: 'Sacred wall' or religious barrier?
06/23/99: GOP must lead in foreign policy
06/21/99: Crumbs of compassion
06/16/99: Compassionate conservatism: face-lift or body transplant?
06/10/99: Victory in Kosovo? Now What?
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