Notable Quotables - 12/05/1994


What A Difference Today Makes

"Your critics have called your budget intentions, as you well know, Voodoo II. Is it your intention to turn back the clock and go back to the same Reaganomics that ballooned the deficit in the first place?"
- Bryant Gumbel to Rep. John Kasich (R-Ohio), November 14 Today.

Bryant Gumbel: "You're a moderate, pro-choice Republican. Are you totally comfortable with some of the extremists and ideologues that seem headed for the 104th Congress and may dominate the Republican Party?"
Rep.-elect Sonny Bono: "I'm my own man, and so when I get there, I will just be me. In general, the philosophy I agree with totally, so I'll get along fine there. The change Newt is talking about I'm all for. I'm all for the term limits. I'm all for the balanced budget amendment."
Gumbel: "You're all for school prayer? You're all for gutting social programs?"
- Exchange on November 18 Today

"With Republicans taking control of Congress in January, Senator Jesse Helms is slated to be the new chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, a prospect that is embarrassing to many Republicans. His two most recent outbursts against the President are just the latest in a long line of outrageous remarks that have earned Helms the disrespect and disgust of people from coast to coast."
- Today co-host Bryant Gumbel, November 23.

"He's called the Prince of Darkness. A darling of the ultra- right, he's been a rabid attack dog against anything liberal... Critics call him a bigot, sexist, and homophobe, and he seems to wear it like a badge of honor."
- NBC's Jim Miklaszewski on Jesse Helms, November 23 Today news story.


The Lower-Tax Bribe

"The Republicans have resorted to demagoguery and transparent bribes (like lower taxes). The legislature they promise seems a blustery, selfish, self-righteous desert."
- Newsweek Senior Editor Joe Klein, October 31.


Newt's Honeymoon

"A lot of people are afraid of you. They think you're a bomb- thrower. Worse, you're an intolerant bigot. Speak to them....You talk about the Clintons as members of the counterculture, the elitists, the left-wingers. How can you have an accommodation with the President when you read him out of 'the Americans,' as you put it?"
- Sam Donaldson's questions to Newt Gingrich on This Week with David Brinkley, November 13.

"Look, America is in a heartless mood. They would throw all those babies in the snow if they could. We will see how they feel after it happens, but the impulse right now is to just take away all their benefits and kick them out. Now, four years from now, after people are dying in the streets, we'll have a different debate."
- Newsweek Washington Bureau Chief Evan Thomas on Inside Washington, November 19.

Dan Rather: "Soup kitchens around the country are reporting demand for their services is up this Thanksgiving - unfortunately, donations are down. And now with the coming shift of power and agendas in Washington, many charitable groups are worried about how they - and the people they help - can make it."
Reporter Richard Threlkeld: "...The leaders of the next Congress have already announced their intention to make major cuts in welfare and other social services....Thanks to places like the Pine Street Inn in Boston, this Thanksgiving there'll be a hot meal and a bed for anyone who needs it. Next Thanksgiving, though, Boston's homeless may not have that to be thankful for."
- CBS Evening News, November 23.


Ted Koppel: Rationalizing Criminal Behavior

"Crime doesn't happen in a vacuum. If we were obliged only to deal with sociopaths, with men and women who commit crimes for the simple satisfaction it gives them, the solutions would be relatively easy. But we are disproportionately hard on the poor and ill-educated in this country. It is absolutely true that even within that disadvantaged segment of our society there are more honest men and women by far than criminals. But to be poor and uneducated in America already constitutes two strikes, and to automatically sentence someone to prison for life on a third strike, without regard to circumstance or context, is unjust, imprudent, and will not solve our problems."
- Nightline host Ted Koppel concluding a series in a North Carolina prison, November 18.


Those Brutal Governors

"[Massachusetts Gov. Bill] Weld's first term featured a relentless, often brutal drive toward fiscal health for his state....Michigan's Republican Governor John Engler earned a reputation as a cold-hearted budget cutter who couldn't tell the difference between fat, flesh and bone by eliminating payments to the state's 83,000 single welfare recipients."
- Time Associate Editor Richard Lacayo, November 21.


Gorby: Didn't Abhor Violence in Lithuania

"Relations with Yeltsin remain poor. Gorbachev, who abhorred violence, denounced Yeltsin for resorting to shelling the Russian Parliament building last year to quash a hard-line revolt."
- Unbylined introduction to interview with Gorbachev, November 1 Los Angeles Times.


The New Hillary?

"One new role now under consideration: national Comforter-in- Chief, exhorting the nation to shed its poisonous cynicism as Roosevelt did in the Depression."
- Newsweek reporter Bob Cohn, November 21.


Negative Attacks on Republican Negativity

"Negativity is the essence of the conservatives' assault. They have nurtured and exploited a negative public mood that, in turn, has wrapped itself around the conservatives' message of negative government. Cynicism has been used to breed cynicism. The conservative program can be summarized as 'anti' - anti-tax, anti-government, anti-incumbent, anti-immigrant, anti-welfare, anti-criminal - with the all the categories conflated into one angry impulse. This is rooted in traditions of no-nothing [sic] nativism and Social Darwinism. No one should be surprised that the celebrated conservative book of this campaign season is The Bell Curve, which proclaims that blacks are inherently inferior in intelligence."
- Former Washington Post reporter Sidney Blumenthal in the Los Angeles Times, October 30.

"How does a Republican candidate running in a state where he must attract Democratic and independent votes square the bankrupt policies of Reaganomics, which resulted in one of the worst recessions since the '30s and changed the entire job structure of the nation, made millionaires out of venture capitalists who went to jail and still kept their great fortunes, and sent the bill to the public for one of the largest fiscal scandals of our government - the savings and loan crisis?"
- Former Boston Globe Executive Editor and Washington Bureau Chief Robert Healy, October 29.


No Hate on the Left

"I hope his wife feeds him lots of eggs and butter and he dies early like many black men do, of heart disease....He is an absolutely reprehensible person."
- USA Today columnist Julianne Malveaux on Justice Clarence Thomas, November 4 PBS To the Contrary.


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