Notable Quotables - 08/18/2003

I Can Smear Arnold, But You Can't

"He's admitted smoking marijuana, using steroids during his body-building career. He's the son of a Nazi Party member. He said he was prejudiced before overcoming those feelings by working with the Simon Weisenthal Center in Los Angeles, and the dean of the Center said an investigation of Schwarzenegger's late father, conducted at the actor's request, found no evidence of war crimes. Through his publicist he's denied allegations published in Premiere magazine in March 2001 that he sexually harassed women and committed infidelity. All those things - are they gonna be front and center, Darry, do you think in this campaign?"
-Katie Couric to Democratic consultant Darry Sragow, August 7 Today.

"The New York Daily News says, 'a Simon strategist said his lagging campaign plans to win by stirring up the base, spotlighting the actor's raunchy past and liberal social views,' meaning Arnold Schwarzenegger. How dirty will you get?"
-Couric to GOP candidate Bill Simon, August 11 Today.

Since Your Election Was a Sham...

"I'd like to ask you about the recall campaign. Since you're not only the leader of this country, but as someone who came into office under extraordinarily partisan circumstances, do you view this recall, which was funded almost entirely by one wealthy Republican who would like to be Governor, as a legitimate, democratic exercise?"
-Los Angeles Times reporter Edwin Chen to President Bush at his July 30 press conference.

Drooling Over Leon Panetta

"A lot of California Democrats were salivating at the thought that Mr. Panetta himself might jump into the Governor's race. He joins us tonight from Seaside, California. You had too much common sense, or what?...Not to press the issue too much, but since its gonna happen anyway, why not have a, you know, a good, strong, sensible politician like yourself to say, well, let's make the best of a bad deal and here I am and I'll try and help make it work?"
-Ted Koppel to Panetta on ABC's Nightline August 7.

Eek! A Right-Wing Cabal!

"In terms of the overall recall process, Mr. Torres, do you think there's collusion in the Republican Party that goes all the way to the White House?"
-Matt Lauer to California Democratic Party Chairman Art Torres on the August 8 Today show.

Al-Qaeda Loves New Baghdad

"Overturning Saddam is not a central battle in that war against terrorism. In fact, al-Qaeda is probably finding it more hospitable in Baghdad today than they did before."
-Eleanor Clift on the August 9 McLaughlin Group.

Flimsy, Nonexistent Case for War

"The world is a better place, and the region certainly a better place, without Saddam Hussein. But theres a sense here in this country, and a feeling around the world, that the U.S. has lost credibility by building the case for Iraq upon sometimes flimsy or, some people have complained, nonexistent evidence. I'm just wondering sir, why did you choose to take the world to war in that way?"
-CBS's John Roberts at Bushs July 30 press conference.

Which Way Is It?

"The President's critics say that his claims of an Iraq/al-Qaeda alliance may be the next shoe to drop in the intelligence controversy, and that while the world may be better off without Saddam Hussein, that alone is not a rationale to take the nation to war."
-CBS White House reporter John Roberts, July 30 Evening News.

"Military commanders now believe al-Qaeda terrorist cells are most likely working in Iraq, part of the resistance still loyal to Saddam Hussein."
-CBS Baghdad reporter Byron Pitts on the July 31 Evening News.

Seeking Advice from a Terrorist

"What would you advise the United States to do today to fight al-Qaeda?...What would be the wise course for the United States to follow now in Iraq?"
-George Stephanopoulos on ABC's This Week, Aug. 3, interviewing Libyan dictator Moammar Qaddafi, sponsor of several anti-American terrorist attacks in the 1980s.

Reuters Joins in Election Charade

"North Korea said on Monday that polls in which voters gave leader Kim Jong-il 100 percent support showed the communist state was 'firm as a rock' in the face of economic woes and isolation over its nuclear ambitions. The 61-year-old Kim was one of 687 deputies elected unopposed on Sunday.... "
-Reuters' Paul Eckert from Seoul in an Aug. 4 dispatch, "N. Korea Hails 100 Percent Poll Support for Leader."

Howard Dean's Media Makeover

"Much of Dr. Dean's presidential platform, particularly his plan for universal health insurance, is an outgrowth of his accomplishments in Vermont. He remains a fiscal conservative, he believes gun control should be left to the states and he favors the death penalty for some crimes."
-New York Times reporters Jodi Wilgoren and David Rosenbaum, July 30.

"As Governor, Dean Was Fiscal Conservative; Presidential Candidate Imposed Discipline on Vermont Legislatures Efforts to Spend."
-Washington Post front page headline, August 3.

"The fact is if you look at his record as Governor, he got an 'A' rating from the National Rifle Association, he balanced the budget in Vermont which is the only state in the Union that does not have a constitutional requirement that you balance it, but he balanced it anyway. He imposed work requirements on welfare recipients two years before Washington did. There's a lot in his record that looks not only moderate, but even conservative."
-Time reporter Karen Tumulty on C-SPAN's Washington Journal, August 6.

"He is a kind of a complicated mix of liberal and moderate positions. He's a fiscal conservative and he was in Vermont."
-USA Today reporter Jill Lawrence on CBS's Face the Nation, August 10.

"He's also a fiscal conservative. And economically he's not as much of a wild-eyed liberal as people think he is."
-Newsweek's Martha Brant, Aug. 9 Inside Washington.

"He is a rock-ribbed budget hawk, a moderate on gays and guns, and a true lefty on only a few issues, primarily the use of U.S. military power."
-Time reporter John Cloud, August 11 issue.

"When the word gets out that Dean isn't liberal - and in fact is quite conservative - on fiscal issues, he'll pick up more McCain support....On fiscal issues, he's far to the right of [Ted] Kennedy."
-Senior Editor Jonathan Alter in an August 6 online chat at the Newsweek Web site.

Reality Check:
"After 12 years of Dean's so-called 'fiscal conservatism,' Vermont remains one of the highest taxing and spending states."
-Cato Institute's "Fiscal Policy Report on the Nations Governors, 2002."

Mondale & Dukakis Not Liberal

"The rap on Dean is that he's like Dukakis and Mondale and McGovern. Well, McGovern was a liberal, but we had an issue and that was the war. Dukakis was no liberal and neither was Mondale. Both of them had several people to the left in those primaries. It was what the Republicans did to them once they got the nomination that made them seem to be liberals in both cases."
-Former NBC and CNN reporter Ken Bode on the syndicated Chris Matthews Show, August 10.

Hillary Is a Real Bargain

John Cochran: Remember the $8 million advance Hillary Clinton's publisher gave her? Turns out it was a bargain. She has earned every penny - and then some. Her book is a best-seller in eight countries....She has not only signed 20,000 copies of her book, she has also put her name on more legislation than any other Senator in this Congress. Sponsoring or co-sponsoring 396 bills, ranging from resolutions on Girl Scouts Week to funds for rebuilding Iraq and-
Senator Hillary Clinton: - to help them improve our homeland defense."
-ABCs World News Tonight, July 31.

More a Sieve Than a Filter

"I'm not going to judge anybody else in the business, but our work - I can speak for NBC News and our newsroom - it goes through, talk about checks and balances. We have an inordinate number of editors. Every word I write, before it goes on air, goes through all kinds of traps and filters, and it's read by all kinds of different people who point out bias."
-CNBC anchor Brian Williams on Comedy Central's The Daily Show, July 29.

Bias Hiding Among the Fish

"If you see a whole monkfish at the market, you'll find its massive mouth scarier than a shark's. Apparently it sits on the bottom of the ocean, opens its Godzilla jaws and waits for poor unsuspecting fishies to swim right into it, not unlike the latest recipients of W's capital-gains cuts."
-Food writer Jonathan Reynolds in a July 27 New York Times Magazine article about eating seafood in Norway.

Admiring Arnold's Liberal Heart

"I think he [Arnold Schwarzenegger] will make a fantastic Governor...I actually believe he's really, at his heart, even though he pretends to be a Republican, I think he's a social Democrat at heart."
-Actress Jamie Lee Curtis on Good Morning America, August 7.