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Jewish World Review Dec. 26, 2000 / 29 Kislev, 5761

David Limbaugh

David Limbaugh
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Consumer Reports


A tinge of revenge?


http://www.jewishworldreview.com -- DEMOCRATS tell us that President Bush should foster an atmosphere of bipartisanship in Washington. They insist that the "photo-finish" presidential election requires that the new administration make conciliation with Democrats its highest priority.

But what is the Democratic leadership offering to do to fulfill its part in this golden rule equation: "Do unto the other Party as you would have it do unto you"? Not a solitary thing, because to them the requirement of bipartisanship applies only to Republicans. It won't be enough for Republicans to move toward the political center. Unless they adopt a full-fledged Democratic agenda, they will be guilty of rank partisanship. And the media will not lift a finger to challenge the Democrats, but instead, will defend them as being wrongfully deprived of power by the Republican high court.

It is troublesome that Democratic Sen. Tom Daschle has telegraphed his obstructionist intentions, but there is an even more ominous harbinger for the next four years: Bill Clinton's coronation of his confidante and fund-raiser Terry McAuliffe as head of the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

Consider McAuliffe's own words as a reflection of his attitude toward this exalted bipartisanship. In a conference call between Clinton, McAuliffe and Joseph Andrew -- the now-vanquished would-be competitor to lead the DNC -- McAuliffe rattled his sabers. "Let George W. Bush have a good week. Let him have a good inauguration. But we need to give these Republicans the same honeymoon they gave us: none."

I don't know about you, but I don't recall hearing one word of condemnation of these pugnacious words from the man poised to lead the Democratic Party by any Democrats or any of the mainstream media. Does that mean they condone that tone? If so, my earlier prediction of the Democrats' planned four-year war is even more of a no-brainer than I thought.

But there are further disturbing aspects to McAuliffe's ascension to leadership. It shows that Clinton, if not directly calling the shots for the party after the expiration of his term, will at least be playing a major role in its decisions. The Clinton-McAuliffe combination is a strong statement from the Democratic Party -- stronger even than Tom Daschle's promised recalcitrance.

As Clinton's alter ego McAuliffe will ensure partisan warfare for the unforeseeable future. I'm not talking here about healthy partisan battles on substantive policy disagreements. I'm talking the same old dirty politics that have dominated the past eight years -- the very kind of politics George Bush is determined to eradicate.

Remember that McAuliffe is the guru who presided over Clinton's 1996 reelection effort, which the Washington Post described as "the most scandal-plagued harvest season in recent politics." Clinton and McAuliffe would doubtless have us believe that the campaign finance scandal involved not the Clinton campaign itself, but the Democratic National Committee. But the truth is that Clinton was intermingling the funds and activities of the two entities, and micromanaging each in flagrant violation of the campaign finance laws. Clinton purposely blurred the distinction between soft money and hard money so he could get around the legal limitations applicable to hard money contributions. McAuliffe, unwittingly or otherwise, had to have been complicit in this arrangement.

In fact, that's one of the things that so troubled both FBI Director Louis Freeh and Charles La Bella, the head of the Justice Department's Special Task Force investigating the campaign finance scandal. They both noted that there was strong evidence that Clinton had personally controlled the Democratic Party's advertising campaign and used its funds in support of his re-election effort.

Don't you think it's reasonable for Republicans to be concerned over Clinton's continued involvement and the Democrats' apparent willingness to let that happen? Maybe they still view Clinton, warts and all, as their only salvation -- even his successor Al Gore couldn't hold on to the baton.

Again, I hope I'm wrong, but it occurs to me that Clinton's influence could be more than a bit mischievous. He's the guy who not long ago reminded us that Republicans still haven't apologized to the nation, meaning to Bill Clinton, for impeaching him.

So let me get this straight: Bill Clinton's not sorry for the Lewinsky scandal; he's not sorry for the campaign finance scandal; his wife's a new senator; and he's got his finger on the hot button of the Democratic Party apparatus. Does anyone smell revenge in the air?



JWR contributor David Limbaugh is an attorney practicing in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, and a political analyst and commentator. Send your comments to him by clicking here.

Up

12/20/00: GOP: Breaking the race barrier
12/18/00: Civility doesn't require surrender
12/13/00: Al Gore: Innocent victimizer
12/11/00: Judicial restraint and ordered liberty
12/06/00: The four years war
12/04/00: Debunking Gore myths
11/29/00: Defending the smaller principles
11/27/00: Albert O'Gore and the little people
11/22/00: Doing 'anything to win'
11/15/00: Enough is enough, Mr. Gore
11/13/00: Al Gore: Thy country or thyself?
11/08/00: Bill and Al: Your time is up
11/06/00:The impending Bush mandate
11/01/00: Can't stop thinkin' 'bout tomorrow
10/30/00: George: Give Gore the ball back
10/25/00: Mr. Gore: A few more questions
10/23/00: It's the big government, stupid
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
03/29/00: Phantasma-Gore-ia
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
01/03/00: McMedia?
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
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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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