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Mullings by Rich Galen
A Political Cyber-Column By Rich Galen
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    A Democratic Dilemma

    Wednesday August 21, 2002

                            Click here for an Easy Print Version

      From Fargo, North Dakota
      Midwestern Legislative Conference

      NOTE: Click here for the third installment of the Mullings Dog Days Tour Travelogue - "I Take Las Vegas by Storm"

    • I did a mini-debate here yesterday with Donna Brazile who ran Al Gore's campaign. You know the Mullings Rule of Interpersonal Relationships: If someone is nice to me, I like them.

    • Ms. Brazile is nice to me, so I like her.

    • Her pitch to the members of legislatures from the Midwestern states was this: The Democrats will win in November because people are worried about their pocketbooks - It's, again, the economy.

    • She maintains the deficit is the result of the Bush tax cuts and in order to restore the budget to balance the tax cuts must be rescinded.

    • If reversing the tax cuts is such a good idea, why aren't Democrats on the Sunday shows pounding their fists on the table demanding it be done?

    • In Monday's LA Times, reporter Ron Brownstein wrote that, while the only arrow in the National Democrats' quiver is a tax increase, "the party's congressional leadership is extremely reluctant - "terrified" might be a better word - to propose retrenching the tax cut unless Bush is on board."

    • Memo to all: George W. Bush is not going be in favor of a tax increase. His dad was talked into a tax increase and the Dems, after praising 41 for doing the statesmanlike thing, proceeded to beat the you-know-what out of him by running the "read my lips" clip a million times in the in the 1992 campaign.

    • Meanwhile, the Republican National Committee is circulating a memo by pollster Matthew Dowd, which indicates that, unlike what Ms. Brazile and the other Democrats are saying around the country, among people who are investors in the stock market Republicans have actually increased their margin in the important generic ballot.

    • The "generic ballot" is the question which asks, "If the election for Congress were held today would you be voting for the Republican or the Democrat." No names, only party affiliation.

    • In January, according to the Dowd memo, the generic vote among investors was 40% to 32% in favor of the GOP. However, he writes:
      "Today, in the latest tracking polls, Republicans have a net generic ballot advantage of 13 points (45% for Republicans and 32% for Democrats) among investors. This is a net increase of five points since January of this year among voters who have been hardest hit by a decline in the stock market!"

    • In addition, Dowd says that the job approval ratings for President Bush are several points higher among investors - in the mid 70s - than they are among non-investors.

    • In another blow to Democrats' attack strategies, former Enron executive, Michael Kopper, is scheduled to plead guilty today to wire fraud and money laundering.

    • This probably means Kopper is going to roll on some - or all - of the other senior Enron thugs, leading to another round of perp walks, and an end to the Democrats' foolish complaints that the Bush Justice Department was dragging its feet on Enron.

    • The closely watched campaign in Maryland between Lt. Governor Kathleen KENNEDY Townsend and Congressman Bob Ehrlich is now just a four-point race. According to a poll by Gonzales/Arscott Research, Townsend leads Ehrlich 47% to 43% with 10% undecided.

    • According to the poll, Ehrlich has built a 47-33 lead among independent voters to go along with his massive lead of 81-8 among Republican voters.

    • One of the sidebars Donna Brazile and I had during lunch was over the evacuation plan for government employees recently announced:
      Donna: There is no way that you can clear all federal employees out of their offices in 15 minutes.
      Me: You can if you evacuate at 5:15. They do it every day.

    • A GOOD Secret Decoder Ring page today: A link to the new Travelogue installment; links to the Matthew Dowd memo and the Ron Brownstein column; and a very good Catchy Caption of the Day.

      --END --
      Copyright © 2002 Richard A. Galen


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