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The Politics Junkie

( -- Clinton's long good-bye is good enough for NYT, WP and USAT, but how to lede the lead? Mimi Hall reads Bill's mind with "President Clinton, increasingly worried that his would-be successor lags in the polls, vigorously defended his record Monday night and pleaded with voters to keep the good times rolling by electing Al Gore." Funny, I could have sworn Al got a shorter shrift than that.

, well, LAT is still running yesterday's print edition at 3:30 -- PT, no less -- and the web version leads with a Ron Brownstein take on a Gore "burdened by voter doubts about his leadership and widespread skepticism that he deserves credit for the strong economy, a new Times poll has found." But at least it's a new Times poll.

discovers Clinton speech: "In perhaps his final address to the nation, President Clinton offered a robust assessment of America's growth and progress in the past eight years and highlighted Vice President Al Gore's role in bringing it about." Then they get right to the protests.

gets newsy too in second: "Seizing his party's center stage one last time, President Clinton opened the Democratic convention Monday night with a laudatory tour of the past eight years and asserted that only Al Gore can keep the good times going."

NYT's son of Apple ledes historical -- shocking! -- for his on whether Gore will always be second best: "The transfer of power is one of the key tests of democracy. At the governmental level, the United States has managed it exceptionally well ever since George Washington, hero of the war that brought the nation into being, handed over to John Adams in 1797." Hey, Papa Bush got a term out of it, anyway. But then again, Nancy never ran for Senate. Knock on wood.

(A a probably unwitting nod from up the stature ladder with two shared thoughts: "sounded at times more like a State of the Union address than anything else," "Mr. Clinton was unstinting in his praise of his vice president. Good word, unstinting. Thanks, R.W. -- call me about a job.)

WP gets on whether Clinton squandered good times or created them: "One of the abiding themes of Clinton's presidency is a frustrated conviction that he has never received the credit he deserves for his accomplishments -- most of all for the prosperity he believes flowed directly from his 1993 budget plan."

USAT goes .

NYT's Peter Marks does some nifty and notes that "The Democratic convention program was running behind by 20 minutes tonight, which happened to be just long enough to ensure that Hillary Rodham Clinton's speech to the delegates was broadcast live in prime time on all three of the major broadcast networks."

"It was not intentional." -- convention spokesman, on Hill's spotlight grab (NYT)

"These girls are working. They're not here to be interviewed. They're here to mingle with the guests." -- warning reporters away from the Playboy Bunnies at Hef's place. (NYT)

"I love you." -- last words to audience Monday night


"Before the convention is over, we're going to show the country just how much special interests have completely taken over our political system." -- 28

"Both parties have made a decision about who they're going to represent. And it ain't us." -- 43

"They've all locked themselves inside the Staples Center and are trying to hide from important issues." -- 23

"We're just here to see Rage." -- 19, at the rubber-bullet-and-riot-gear-filled RATM concert in the Staples parking lot.

NYT's ever-witty : "Al Gore has been hovering outside California waiting for the Clintons to depart, like a host tapping his foot at the door while the longest-winded guest at the party launches into one last anecdote by the coat rack. But now the convention is his, his, his, and we are going to hear more about Mr. Gore over the next three days than you might have thought humanly possible."

WP's : "So how much will we miss Bill Clinton? The politician who welcomed himself into American history as the Man from Hope eight years ago says goodbye as the Man of Hopes Realized."

WSJ's : "The Democrats are reveling in a preconvention electoral bounce with the choice of Joe Lieberman as Al Gore's running mate. Yet they remain beset by political problems."

But aren't the Clintons leaving town now?

Copyright © 2000 Time Inc.


Tuesday, August 15, 2000


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