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The Best of Notable Quotables; December 28, 1998

Vol. Eleven; No. 27


Carve Clinton into Mt. Rushmore Award



“He invited his exhausted audience to take a holiday from Lewinsky and spend a refreshing hour and 12 minutes feeling like a country again. For once the talk on the screen was not of oral sex, but of our lives and fortunes and sacred happiness. He had become all human nature, the best and the worst, standing there naked in a sharp, dark suit, behind the TelePrompTer. That which does not kill him only makes him stronger, and his poll numbers went through the roof....That may have been a miracle, but it was no accident: Americans are less puritanical and more forgiving than the cartoon version suggests, and this President is never better than in his worst moments.”

Time magazine Senior Editor Nancy Gibbs, February 9 issue. [104 points]


Runners-up:



“The White House looks at this with such great irony. As the impeachment hearings grind on could you have a situation where next year the President cannot go to the Judiciary Committee on a particular day because he’s receiving the Nobel Peace Prize? That's the kind of irony the White House looks at as they look at the success of President Clinton on this day.”

– NBC News Washington Bureau Chief Tim Russert to Sara James on the October 23 Today hours before the signing in the White House of the Israel-PLO peace deal. [53]
 
Dan Rather: “With the economy humming, CBS’s White House correspondent Scott Pelley reports, President Clinton was singing his own praises, this time with the facts and figures to back him up.”
Scott Pelley: “The recovery began before Mr. Clinton took office. The fact that it’s run so long is credited to what some call the great odd couple – Mr. Clinton and Alan Greenspan, the Federal Reserve Chairman. Simply put, when Mr. Clinton made deficit reduction his top priority, Greenspan felt confident driving interest rates down. America did the rest. If the recovery continues to December, it will be the longest peacetime recovery in history.”

– March 6 CBS Evening News. [33]
 
Dan Rather: “President Clinton today proposed a centerpiece of his policy agenda: federal help for working parents who need safe and affordable child care....”
Scott Pelley: “The President was raised by a single mother who left him with his grandparents when she went off to school. Today, Mr. Clinton proposed what may be the largest increase in child care funding in the nation’s history.”

– Opening of a January 7 CBS Evening News story (though Clinton survived unregulated care by a relative.) [32]

“Medicare, the health care program that has been a godsend to the elderly in this country, even with all its financial difficulties. Tonight the President wants to dramatically expand its coverage to millions more.”

– NBC’s Tom Brokaw introducing a January 6 Nightly News story. [30]