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Notable Quotables - 08/11/1997

 

Jesse Helms, Terrorist?


"Just naming [Massachusetts Gov. William] Weld is a gesture of administration bipartisanship. And the fight over his nomination may touch off a gratifying round of GOP fratricide in the Senate just when the civil war between pro- and anti-Gingrich forces is simmering down in the House. New bickering could show soccer moms just how small the GOP tent is...[Weld] underestimates Washington's willingness to negotiate with terrorists who happen to run committees."
- Time columnist Margaret Carlson, August 4.

 

Bias: Everybody Does It


"All along the Democrats have called the loan a sham transaction, but legal or not, one thing the hearings have made clear is that both parties were so consumed by money, laws were bent if not broken."
- ABC reporter Linda Douglass concluding July 24 World News Tonight story on Haley Barbour's testimony.

"Cokie, everyone agrees this is a horrible system that we have, the campaign finance system. Do you see reform coming out of these hearings, or are we going to be left with the same system that everybody agrees doesn't work?"
- Charles Gibson to Cokie Roberts, July 25 Good Morning America.

Tim Russert: "It was Republican Fred Thompson who scored the points by saying, 'Will you at least acknowledge, Mr. Barbour, that you owe some money to a gentleman in Hong Kong, who you took, borrowed money from, and never repaid the loan?' But overall, the Democrats got their poster boy. Haley Barbour was not hurt all that much." News anchor Sara James: "Does it end here, Tim?"
- July 25 Today.
Co-host Matt Lauer:
"But there aren't any major storm clouds on the horizon for Bill Clinton, other than maybe Medicare reform." Newsweek's Jonathan Alter: "Yeah, but of course there are these possible scandals, but when the economy is doing well, the public really doesn't seem to care much about anything else."
- Exchange on August 1 Today, a show which did not mention the fundraising hearings.

 

Liberals for Liberty, Conservatives for Government Power?


"To describe William J. Brennan as one of the greatest justices of all time is to put things too abstractly. Before Brennan, the Bill of Rights protected people mostly from the federal government, but scarcely from states and cities...Brennan was the principal architect of the nation's system for protecting individual rights."
- Liberal Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe in an obituary assigned by Time, August 4.

"His influence came from his ability to make his expansive view of rights in the Constitution a more attractive, more appealing alternative for other justices than the pinched reading of the Constitution advanced by conservative colleagues."
- Former Wall Street Journal reporter (and authorized Brennan biographer) Stephen Vermiel in Newsweek, August 4.

"Justice William Brennan led the Supreme Court on a quiet revolution that expanded individual rights and press freedoms to an extent found nowhere else in the world...Brennan saw his influence wane as justices appointed by Presidents Reagan and Bush cut back the court's role as active protector of individual rights."
- USA Today reporters Tony Mauro and Mimi Hall, July 25.

"Brennan was recognized across the political spectrum not only for his legal mastery but as a defender of individual liberty and a voice of civility."
- Washington Post reporter Joan Biskupic, July 25.


No "Hard-Left" Group "Calling Itself" the NAACP


"One of the nation's most respected and oldest civil rights groups is taking a new look at one of its fundamental goals of modern times....school desegregation."
- Dan Rather, July 15 CBS Evening News.

vs.

"The head of the Republican political lobbying group that calls itself, quote, 'The Christian Coalition,' said today he's leaving to start a political consulting business. Ralph Reed's group took a beating on some of its hard-right agenda in the last election."
- Rather, April 23 CBS Evening News.

 

What's the Line on Line Items?


White House Considering Line-Item Veto of Tax Cuts
- Washington Post, August 2

Clinton seems unlikely to use line-item veto on new tax bill
- Washington Times, same day

 

Attacking the Big-Spending Budget Deal - from the Left


"The naysayers say that this is a Christmas-in-July budget, with tax cuts paid for with money that should be used to reduce the national debt. The critics also say that with the economy booming, there's no need to encourage investors to invest more in the stock market with a big capital gains tax cut. They also point out that the last time we had a big cap gains tax cut in 1981, the very next year the economy fell into a deep recession."
- All of the criticisms presented by ABC's John Cochran, July 29 World News Tonight.

"After the back-slapping, after the fine print, the bottom line on the tax bill is still this: The richer you are, the richer you'll be....By slashing capital gains by almost a third, the new tax bill will shower most of the goodies on the wealthiest 20 percent of all Americans. That's families earning more, often much more, than $64,000 a year....The biggest winners from the new tax cut are those...making more than $200,000 a year, the top one percent of all taxpayers. They'll get an average of well over $5,000 a year in new tax relief, enough for a couple of weeks here at The Plaza. Enough to make them feel richer, but not rich. Jonathan Alter, NBC News, New York."
- Newsweek's Jonathan Alter on MSNBC's The News with Brian Williams, July 29.

"I have been opposed to the whole idea all along, especially when it comes to tax cuts. I don't see how that could have been afforded....Well, thank God for Kiddie Care. I mean, I'm glad that they have created that one. There should be an entitlement for that thing, children should be entitled to have good health care."
- Gannett News Service reporter Deborah Mathis, August 2 Inside Washington.

William Schneider: "Who should get the credit for passing a balanced budget? Not this President or this Congress - they didn't do anything heroic. The booming economy made it easy...The really difficult decisions got made years ago, by politicians who took deficit reduction seriously and paid for it with their own careers...This man certainly belongs on the honor roll. Back in 1984, Walter Mondale warned Americans that the deficit carried a price....when he was faced with a deficit crisis, President Bush delivered what Mondale had promised, and opened himself up to ridicule...
"In 1993, congressional Democrats stuck their necks out to support President Clinton's budget. A year later, they got their heads chopped off...Martyrs to the cause. Let us pay homage to those who gave the last full measure of devotion that the budget could be balanced. They made the tough choices, and we owe them so much, beginning with this week's political Play of the Week. President Bush, the Democratic Congress, failed candidates for President - they are the unsung heroes of this week's budget deal. Martyrs to the deficit, we salute you."
Bernard Shaw: "Bravo. Thank you. That's why I love this program."
- CNN's Inside Politics, August 1.

 

Eleanor Clift, Flushmaster General


"It's loony in the sense that you can't have every locality decide what the water standards are and I don't think the people of one state should be allowed to flush three times at whim while the people of California have to conserve water."
- Newsweek's Eleanor Clift reacting to proposal to rescind a 1992 federal law forcing all new toilets to not exceed 1.6 gallons, allowing states to set the standard instead.

 

L. Brent Bozell III, Publisher
Brent H. Baker, Tim Graham; Editors
Geoffrey Dickens, Gene Eliasen, James Forbes, Steve Kaminski, Clay Waters; Media Analysts
Kristina Sewell, Research Associate
Carey Evans, Circulation Director
Ian Alexander, Jessica Anderson; Interns