Notable Quotables - 03/05/2001

Bush's Hard Core Conservatism

"Although he talked a lot about Democratic priorities education, the entitlements, racial profiling the core of this speech was hard core conservatism: fiscal restraint; deep, across-the-board spending and tax cuts; the privatization of part of Social Security. So he certainly has made his own people very happy on this speech."
ABC White House correspondent Terry Moran, commenting after Bush's budget address, February 27.

Dangerous, Unfair Tax Cuts

"President Bush tonight outlines his cut-federal-programs-to-get-a-tax-cut plan to Congress and the nation. Democrats will then deliver their televised response, which basically says Mr. Bush's ideas are risky business, endangering among other things, Social Security and Medicare."
Dan Rather, February 27 CBS Evening News.

"Let's talk for a moment, Karen, about the tax cut because a lot of people are interested in that. Instead of an across-the-board tax cut, it seems many Americans would prefer a smaller tax cut for lower and middle income Americans. Would the President be opposed to that?...But doesn't the tax cut really favor mostly wealthy Americans?"
CBS's Jane Clayson to White House Counselor Karen Hughes, February 27 The Early Show.


Democrats Spoke Hard Truths

"As far as numbers and common sense go, the Democrats response was solid. But in terms of political dexterity or public relations acumen, it was a bust. Daschle and Gephardt's dour response to Bush's ebullient address to Congress should serve as a stark reminder to Democrats still trying to decipher Gore's loss to Bush: Most Americans don't need or want to be reminded that life is hard, money is tight and things could be better. The gloom and doom implicit in the Democrat's message may, in fact, be more realistic than the goofily optimistic tone Bush likes to set. But it's far less appealing to voters."
Time.coms Jessica Reaves, article posted February 28.


Upset Over Feeding of the VRWC

"But aside from feeding the cottage industry of the usual Republican Clinton-bashers, is anything likely to come of this?"
Bryant Gumbel to Gloria Borger, on CBS's The Early Show, after reports that Hillary's brother took $400,000 to arrange last-minute pardons, February 22.


We Believe Hillary

Cokie Roberts: "There's a poll today saying most New Yorkers don't believe Hillary Clinton on all this. Now I must say I do believe that Hugh Rodham did not tell his stern big sister about this."
George Stephanopoulos: "I think you're exactly right."
ABC's This Week, February 25.


Clueless Hillary Shocked by Hugh

"Two separate friends of Hillary Rodham Clinton told CBS News tonight that Hugh Rodham, quote, 'spent considerable time in the White House during the last month of the Clinton presidency.' Senator Clinton's mother, Dorothy Rodham, was also there for a good deal of time according to these sources. One friend said Hillary Clinton's family has, quote, 'always been very important to her and very close to her.' Continuing to quote, 'She always has tried to have her brother and mother around as much as possible.' Also continuing to quote, 'these new revelations are absolutely devastating to her and she is furious about them', unquote."
Dan Rather, February 21 CBS Evening News.

Piling On Clinton?

"With the exception of the pardon of Marc Rich and some other moves that probably were somewhat questionable, would you concede this morning that its gotten to the point where there is a bit of piling on going on here? I mean it seems to me that he has done some things that other Presidents have done in the past. I mean, you look at other presidential libraries, they are filled with things that those Presidents got during their, their years at the White House. And yet somehow its become a high crime for Bill Clinton to take some of these things with him to put in his presidential library."
NBC's Katie Couric to Chris Matthews and Mike Barnicle, February 20 Today.


Defending Clinton's Family

"In every family there are people and situations you would just as soon keep from others. So, when you express shock and outrage at Bill and Hillary's brothers involvement in the pardon controversy, consider what your own relatives might do if you possessed the power of the presidency."
Carole Simpson, anchor of ABC's World News Tonight/Sunday, in her "On My Mind" commentary, February 24.


Nixon, Bush Pardons Were Worse

"We keep learning things and everything that's come out, Hugh Rodham, his involvement was wrong. But how are any of these pardons worse than President Bush in his final days in office pardoning Cap Weinberger only days before Weinberger's going to be on trial in a way that would implicate Bush? He did it to save his skin."
ABC News analyst and reporter George Stephanopoulos on This Week, February 25.

"Now the Teamsters one million strong endorsed Richard Nixon after Jimmy Hoffa was pardoned by Richard Nixon. Now that, to me, smacks of a quid [pro quo] far more logical than Bill Clinton taking money for his library, for God sakes, not himself, but for his library or for the Democratic National Committee....Why is it that on Fox television you never hear the mention of the Hoffa pardon?!"
Geraldo Rivera on CNBC's Rivera Live, February 20.

"The problem with the right is you only investigate when it's Bill Clinton. How about Caspar Weinberger's pardon by George H. Bush? I mean if you, if you criticized that publicly, then you have standing to criticize this pardon."
NBC News reporter and CNBC host Geraldo Rivera on Today, February 14.


Fewer Cuts for the Wealthy

"Democrats in Congress put out their version of a budget and tax cut plan. It features tax cuts half the size of the Bush proposal, fewer of those cuts going to the wealthy, many more targeted to middle and lower income Americans. The Democrats would also earmark more of the federal surplus for national debt and for creating a prescription drug benefit for seniors under Medicare."
Dan Rathers complete story on the Democratic tax plan, February 15 CBS Evening News.


Bush Promoting Slaughter

Helen Thomas of Hearst Newspapers: "Why do you refuse to respect the wall between the church and state? And you know that the mixing of religion and government for centuries has led to slaughter. I mean the very fact that our country has stood in good stead by having this separation. Why do you break it down?"
President Bush: "Helen, I strongly respect the separation of church and state."
Thomas: "You wouldn't have a religious office in the White House if you did."
Exchange during Bush's first presidential news conference, February 22.


Clintons Have Never Been Venal

"Both Clintons, especially Bill Clinton, has never been, they've never been venal. They have, they may have blind spots. They've made mistakes, but they've never been people, I think, who are corrupted by money. I've just never seen any instance of that and I trust that at the end of the day what we'll find here is that there was some real stupidity involved on the part of the brother, but that the Clintons themselves were, while they are going to be lashed to this mast now for the next few weeks, that we'll find at the end of the day that they themselves have not been venal in any of these cases."
U.S. News & World Report Contributing Editor David Gergen, Feb. 21 The News with Brian Williams on MSNBC.


Newsman Gumbel: Stop Before We Learn Something!

"Give me the basis for this in a nutshell. Bill Clinton is no longer President, his pardons are irrevocable, what's the purpose of the investigation?"
"But when there's no evidence of illegality, how do you justify, for example, your committee Chairman Dan Burton subpoenaing the records of the presidential library foundation for everybody that donated $5,000 or more? Why isn't that anything more than what attorney Kendall calls a classic fishing expedition?"
"How is the welfare of the American people served by continuation of this investigation?"
Questions from Bryant Gumbel to Republican Congressman Chris Shays, February 26 The Early Show.


Dan Rather: The End is Near!

"The forecast from Hell: Why America may see more killer tornadoes and floods, hurricanes and wildfires in the years ahead....Good evening. There are new and dire predictions tonight about the future of our planet. Around the world glaciers are in full retreat. Some, like the ancient ice cap on Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa, could be gone in a decade or two. It's a dramatic symptom of the warming of the Earth detailed in a new thousand-page United Nations report, Climate Change 2001. It predicts the new century will bring, and I quote, 'Large scale, and possibly irreversible, changes affecting every last person on Earth.'"
Dan Rather opening the Feb. 19 CBS Evening News.


Clinton Has Told Just One Lie?

"The only lie he told was to his wife and to us about it."
Geraldo Rivera referring to Monica Lewinsky, February 15 CNBC's Rivera Live.