CyberAlert -- November 4, 1996 -- Clinton's No Liberal

Four items today:

1. NPR's Mara Liasson predicts that in a second term Bill Clinton will propose many new government programs, but that doesn't make him a liberal.

2. Sam Donaldson says Republicans shut the government down and asserts: "I don't think this was a Republican conservative tide in 1994."

3. Among the DNC donors listed in the report the Democrats initially refused to release: Hollywood celebrities from Robert Zemeckis to Danny DeVito.

4. A TV network host admits supporting George McGovern -- when she was seven years old.

1) A lot of little government programs add up to big government and putting mandates on business is the latest way liberals have found to impose their views, but that's escaped NPR's Mara Liasson. On Washington Week in Review Friday night on PBS (November 1) Liasson assured viewers that Republican are wrong to tag Clinton a liberal:
"There's this myth that if Clinton does get the Democrats back in control [of Congress], he'll revert to the quote 'old Bill Clinton.' The Republicans would like you to believe he'll become a liberal again. I don't think that's going to happen. I think the White House has prepared a second term agenda that is geared with either a razor-thin Democratic majority in mind, or Republicans still in control. They are going to be able to get the same program through no matter what. And it's going to be these small, incremental things, teeny tiny proposals that he's made this year, nothing big, no big government programs."

2) Republicans and conservatives may gain House and Senate seats on Tuesday and Bill Clinton is winning by stealing conservative issues and claiming credit for the accomplishments of Congress, but Sam Donaldson doesn't think the country has moved right.

In the roundtable portion of Sunday's This Week with David Brinkley Sam Donaldson went so far from reality that even Cokie Roberts felt compelled to correct him:
Sam Donaldson: "George is always seeing a conservative tide. If three county commissioners are elected in an off season and they happen to be Republican conservative, you say there's a Republican conservative tide. I don't think this was a Republican conservative tide in 1994."
Cokie Roberts: "How come only Democratic incumbents lost and no Republican incumbents lost?"
Donaldson: "Because I think it was the voters saying throw the bums out."
Roberts: "But no Republican incumbents lost."
Donaldson: "But I'm taking about conservative tide. There was an anti-Democratic tide, absolutely, Cokie. They said throw these Democrtaic bums out they've had all these years in Congress and we don't like it and we don't like our lives and they're in."
George Will: "Speaking for conservatives, let's just say 1994 is alright with us no matter what you call it."
Donaldson: "Are you going to shut down the government again, did that strategy work?"

3) At a campaign rally in New Jersey on Sunday, actress Whoopi Goldberg introduced the President. While she's on the road for the campaign, her friends in Hollywood have been writing some large checks. When the Democratic National Committee last week released a donor list they initially withheld, the Washington Times checked to see who was among those making the $10.1 million in donations that arrived in early October. Among the names:

Meanwhile, the October 31 Washington Post had this item in a "day in the life" story on the campaigns:
"3pm, Washington. Kevin Spacey, the movie actor is touring the Clinton-Gore headquarters....The entire Clinton-Gore Washington operation screeches to a halt. Eventually they get Spacey to participate in a daily campaign ritual. The staffers have taped a sheet a butcher paper to a door. On the paper, in crayon, somebody has drawn the White House and the number seven -- as in seven more days and it's over. As the Olympic fanfare blares from a boombox, and the staffers cheer him on, Spacey jumps through the paper like Superman."

4) Opening the Saturday Today show on November 2, co-host Jodi Applegate promoted an upcoming segment. In so doing she showed that members of the media don't grow liberal with age, they start out that way.
Jodi Applegate: "Did you hear about the Weekly Reader poll that was out this week?"
Jack Ford: "Did you used to get them in school? I loved them."
Applegate: "Oh yeah. In 1972 I voted for McGovern, because 'govern' was in his name. This was my thinking when I was seven years old. Anyway, they're uncannily accurate at predicting the outcome of the presidential campaign so we'll take a look at why that might be."

How much do you want to bet that she's voting for Clinton this year because she thinks the C in Clinton stands for "compassion"?

-- Brent Baker