Dirty tricks

By Geraldine Sealey

Published May 18, 2004 9:22PM (EDT)

The Village Voice has a scoop on GOP dirty tricks that undermined Pat Buchanan's 2000 Reform Party presidential run and "virtually eliminated a national centrist party that could've altered the 2004 race."

Here's an excerpt, but it's really worth a full read: "Alive now in only seven states, the party's remnants just offered their ballot line to [Ralph] Nader, which could also wind up benefiting Bush. The saga begins with a baby, allegedly born more than four decades ago. Incredibly, just as Bush backers in 2000 used an illegitimate-child scandal in South Carolina to smear John McCain, longtime Republican dirty-tricks operative Roger Stone was simultaneously using just such a scandal to undermine Buchanan."

"Stone, who also spearheaded the pro-Bush mob shutdown of the Miami/Dade recount in 2000, says now that he 'has no specific recollection' of strategically employing the Buchanan baby story. But a Voice investigation reveals that he pushed it aggressively on reporters early in the 2000 campaign, then just let it hover over Buchanan, who was nose-diving so badly toward November that no explicit threat of a scandal story was even needed."

Geraldine Sealey

Geraldine Sealey is senior news editor at Salon.com.

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