Jewish World Review May 17, 1999 /2 Sivan 5759
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Here are some questions that next year's candidates for high elective office -- especially Texas Gov. George W. Bush, the front-runner for the Republican nomination -- should answer.
1. Given the current moral confusion in the country and in the aftermath of the Littleton, Colo., shootings, we seem to have lost our way. What would you do as president to lead us out of the morass?
2. Do you favor a reduction in income tax rates? If so, which brackets would you reduce? Or does your preference run to across-the-board percentage cuts or "targeted'' tax reductions? If the latter, which targets?
3. If you oppose a tax cut, why? Is there an appropriate maximum or minimum tax on workers?
4. Would you reduce or eliminate the capital gains tax? If so, how and when?
5. Would you favor elimination of the federal estate tax, or would you just cut the rates or raise the exemption?
6. Since most Republican conservatives claim to be pro-life, what would you do to reduce the number of abortions? Do you support your party's abortion position as expressed in the national GOP platform?
7. Do you favor expanding civil rights legislation to include people on the basis of their sexual preference?
8. Will homosexuals be appointed to positions of trust in your administration?
9. The Navy claims shipboard pregnancies have not weakened fighting readiness. Do you agree? What, if anything, should be done to reduce pregnancies? What would you change concerning women in the military?
10. If you were president now, what would your strategy be concerning Slobodan Milosevic and his ethnic cleansing of Kosovo?
11. Would you send in ground troops?
12. Should our "constructive engagement'' with China be changed? If so, how and to what?
13. If you had been a senator, would you have voted to convict President Clinton and remove him from office?
14. If you are concerned about the lack of judicial restraint in the courts, how would you rein in judges?
15. What will you require from judges you consider for the bench?
16. What is your view of the state of our military? If you believe it is weak, what would you do to make it strong and how much would it cost?
17. What should be America's role in the world? How would you judge whether the United States should send troops to other nations?
18. Is it time for the IRS to be eliminated? If so, what should replace it?
19. Will your choice of a running mate reflect your ideology and principles?
20. Do you support the notion that we are "one world''? Should the uniqueness of the United States and the concept of nationalism be subsumed into a global economy and a society dominated by a world body, such as the United Nations?
There are many more pertinent questions, of course, but answers to these, especially from the
front runner, would be a good start. It's not enough to cite polls and speak in nonspecific
platitudes. No one deserves a coronation, but the public needs to know what a candidate
believes and what he (or she) might do as president. In light of the flimflam man now occupying
the space, some early truth and conviction would be a pleasant
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