Let the big dog out

By Joan Walsh

By Letters to the Editor

Published October 24, 2000 7:02AM (EDT)

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Yes, yes, yes. When is Al Gore going to figure out that anybody who ever cared about the Lewinsky scandal is never going to vote for a Democrat anyway, and that the rest of us would feel better about supporting him if he showed some spine by working with the president who brought about the incredible achievements Gore should be bragging about? If young people are voting for Bush, perhaps it's because they can't remember a time when deficits dominated budget talks, public healthcare practitioners couldn't even mention morning-after pills or abortion services to desperate clients, and the Supreme Court seemed poised to eliminate the Bill of Rights, thanks to Reagan-Bush appointees.

-- LauraAnne Adler

I couldn't agree more. Gore has already distanced himself morally from Clinton, atoning for his boss with the Lieberman selection. Now, if it isn't too late, is the time to turn the campaign into a referendum on the last eight years. How stupid not to. Let's face it: If Clinton could run again, even with the Lewinsky albatross around his neck, he'd win in a landslide.

Get with the program, Al. Stop listening to the GOP which has engineered this distancing and is now out dancing with a 10-point margin in the polls.

If you get Clinton involved, you can easily bait the Republicans into going too far in their hatred of Clinton. Remember 1998! Right in the middle of the whole scandal, at the height of anti-Clinton sentiment, the Dems won seats in the House.

-- Janet Clark

"United we stand, divided we fall," will soon become a reality for the Democratic Party if Gore does not wake up to the reality that Clinton is not a liability. Al Gore and his advisors need to allow Gore to be his own man by standing beside Clinton, whose record speaks and atones for itself. Unfortunately, Gore at this point cannot win for attempting to lose the very legacy of which he is a part.

The elephant is in the room. Everyone knows it and to not speak of it, in this case Clinton, is foolish at the very least. At the very worst it accomplishes the Republicans' agenda.

-- Marcus Farrell

I think letting Clinton loose would be a high-risk maneuver, one that Gore really can't afford at this late date. To Democrats frustrated by Gore's lackluster performance against Bush, having Clinton go after the governor might be extremely satisfying, at least in the short run, but what would it really do for Gore? I think the jury is out on that one.

-- Janice Billingsley

I have to respectfully disagree with your opinion that Gore may lose the election if he doesn't let President Clinton campaign on his behalf. It appears to me that there are but a few states where the election will actually be won, such as Michigan and Wisconsin. There are many independent voters in those states, who I think are registered as such because they typically vote their conscience and not along party lines. It appears to me it is those independents to which the two front-running candidates are making an appeal. I think many of those independents may not as forgiving of President Clinton's transgressions as you would like to believe. If Gore brings him out now it may just have the opposite effect of disgusting those voters who have not quite made up their minds.

-- Julie Titze

Four months ago the media yapped on and on about Gore needing to "distance" and "distinguish" himself from Bill Clinton. The advice was clear: "Show you are your own man."

Gore has done this. Now, suddenly, it is imperative that he seek Bill Clinton's help in persuading voters to support him in November.

A clearer message to aspirants for public office cannot be found: Do not pay too much attention to the advice of the media.

-- Scott Leahy

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Al Gore Bill Clinton Joan Walsh